There are few things that go together better than independent film and the independent spirit of a small Texas town. Which is exactly why we choose to hold the Hill Country Film Festival in Fredericksburg. And, when the films are finished, we couldn’t think of a better town to explore for our filmmakers and patrons. Because here, you’ll find everything from museums and historical sites to shopping, outdoor adventures, great German food, over 60 wineries and more.

Created to celebrate and showcase filmmakers from Texas and around the world, the festival began in 2010. In addition to screening independent films, both short and feature length, HCFF hosts filmmaker Q&A/interviews, discussion panels, a VIP lounge and festival parties.

HCFF welcomes films in the form of features (recommended between 90-120 minutes) and shorts (recommended under 30 minutes), along with documentaries in either form.

Cinema Dulce Award (Best of Fest)*
Best Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Director
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Student Film
Best Texas Film*
Best Documentary
Audience Choice Award

*Cash prizes will be given to winners of the festival’s Cinema Dulce - Best of Fest ($1,500) and Best Texas Film ($1,000) awards sponsored by Texas’ premier boutique winery Pedernales Cellars.

Pedernales Cellars has a long-standing commitment of supporting the development of regional arts organizations, especially those with a strong educational mission. Through these awards, Pedernales Cellars looks to extend its support to include excellence in independent filmmaking for the benefit of the Texas Hill country community and beyond.

1. We encourage the submission of films in the form of feature-length (recommended 90-120 minutes), and short-length films (recommended under 30 minutes). International films are also welcome but must either be in English or have English subtitles.

2. Films must be available for screening during the festival, May 30 - June 2, 2024.

3. By submitting a film to HCFF, you grant the Hill Country Film Festival permission to screen your film, if said film is officially accepted into this year's lineup.

4. By submitting a film to HCFF, you agree to allow highlights or excerpts of your film (e.g. a trailer) to be placed on the HCFF website and used for other marketing and promotional purposes. You also agree to allow HCFF to promote the following year's festival with the above excerpts, highlights and/or trailers. HCFF will never solicit or screen your film outside the promotion of the HCFF.

5. You may submit as many entries as you like. Each entry requires its own entry fee.

6. The only acceptable way to submit your film is via FilmFreeway, as an online screener (Vimeo password-protected link is recommended).

7. In accordance with the HCFF policy, the entry fee is non-refundable. You will not be allowed to enter your work unless you agree to abide by the terms and conditions of the HCFF.

8. Filmmakers must have obtained all clearances for exhibition and must certify that the work is original and no disputes regarding ownership exist on the film.

9. All entries must be submitted through FilmFreeway by March 18, 2024.

11. Notification of selections will be by April 22, 2042. Only then will the film be considered for awards. Please understand that acceptance in the festival will in no way guarantee that you, your actors or crew will be offered paid transportation or lodging for the event. We do promise a good time, however.

Overall Rating
  • Drew Highlands

    Thrilled to have my short film 'In the Water' screened at HCFF. It's such a great festival, getting to meet so many filmmakers and having a great time watching some incredible films. The entire HCFF staff was amazing, and I hope to return to HCFF in the future.

    November 2023
  • We were not available to attend, however; everyone there was easy to work with and communicated well.

    August 2023
  • Paul Alanis

    Glad I had the opportunity to screen my short horror film “It Listens” at the HCFF. The programmers know how to run a solid festival. I was excited to screen in a block with other great films. I would definitely love to participate again.

    July 2023
  • Great festival in a great Texas town. Every film maker should be here for a truly great experience.

    July 2023
  • HCFF is an amazing festival in a gorgeous and welcoming town! I had the best weekend watching stellar films, meeting amazingly talented filmmakers, and drinking my weight in delicious wine! The team behind HCFF really takes care of the attendees with top-notch parties every night. AND the number of locals who attend the festival every year is just fantastic. I highly recommend attending this festival!

    June 2023