A Terrifying Display of Artistry and Fear, Presented by Hot Springs Arts & Film Institute
As the autumn leaves fall and the eerie ambiance fills the air, horror enthusiasts and filmmakers from around the world gather in Hot Springs, Arkansas for an unforgettable cinematic experience: the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival. Brought to you by the acclaimed Hot Springs Arts & Film Institute, this festival has become an iconic event for horror genre aficionados, celebrities and filmmakers alike.
Nestled in the heart of picturesque Hot Springs, this festival has carved out a thrilling niche in the film industry, providing a platform for indie horror films and showcasing the talents of both emerging and established filmmakers. With a dedicated team of horror enthusiasts, volunteers, and industry professionals, the Hot Springs Arts & Film Institute has created an immersive experience that celebrates the artistry and fear-inducing power of the horror genre.
The Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival is more than just a gathering of film screenings; it's a celebration of the macabre and the exploration of the dark recesses of the human imagination. From psychological thrillers to supernatural tales, slasher flicks to creature features, the festival invites both filmmakers and audiences to indulge in their darkest fears and revel in the thrill of adrenaline-pumping cinema.
Bill Volland, the visionary behind the Hot Springs Arts & Film Institute, recognized the need for a dedicated space to showcase the Horror, Thriller and Sci Fi genres while providing a supportive community for filmmakers. A passion for bringing unique stories to the forefront, Volland established the festival with Tamara Glynn (Halloween 5) to challenge conventional narratives and push the boundaries of horror filmmaking.
The festival showcases a curated selection of the best Horror, Thriller and Sci fi films submitted from all over the world. From chilling shorts to spine-tingling feature-length films, each entry is carefully chosen to give audiences a diverse and terrifying experience. The festival's commitment to showcasing a blend of traditional and avant-garde horror ensures that attendees are captivated by a range of imaginative and thought-provoking works.

Beyond the screenings, the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival offers a range of engaging events and discussions. Workshops hosted by renowned horror filmmakers provide valuable insights into the craft, while panel discussions explore the themes and social relevance of the genre. These sessions foster networking opportunities for emerging talent while offering valuable knowledge to seasoned professionals, making it a must-attend festival for anyone looking to deepen their understanding of the horror genre.
The picturesque location of Hot Springs further enhances the festival experience. Exquisite natural landscapes, quaint historic districts, and the legendary Hot Springs National Park create an ideal backdrop against which to explore the plethora of spine-chilling films on offer. The festival's immersive atmosphere ensures that attendees are transported into a world of suspense, horror, and the supernatural.
In the spirit of the institutes commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity, the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival welcomes submissions from a wide range of creatives, regardless of gender or background. This focus on granting a platform to underrepresented voices provides a refreshing perspective on the genre and welcomes new narratives that add depth and richness to the thrilling tapestry of horror cinema.
So, if you have a love for the macabre, a passion for horror filmmaking, or simply a desire to immerse yourself in the chilling world of the supernatural, make sure to mark the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival on your calendar. Experience the thrills, the scares, and the dark imagination brought to life by visionary filmmakers from across the globe. Prepare to be terrified and amazed at this one-of-a-kind celebration of horror cinema.


Some guests have included

Actors Tyler Mane, known for his roles as Michael Myers in Rob Zombies “HALLOWEEN” and Sabertooth in "XMEN"
Michael Berryman in "THE HILLS HAVE EYES" and "STAR TREK
Leslie Easterbrook in “DEVILS REJECTS”
David Schmoeller "PUPPET MASTER” and "ARRIVAL"
Sound Design and Audio Effects Wizard Alan Howarth "STAR TREK", "ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK", "THE THING" and "HALLOWEEN"
Ted Hatfield, Regal Entertainment Group and United Artists Cinemas
and many more.

Juliet Landau, Drusilla Buffy the Vampire Slayer
HOT SPRINGS INTERNATIONAL HORROR FILM FESTIVAL is brilliant!!! We love the mission and vision of this incredible and innovative festival!!! It is truly what a film festival is supposed to be. Festival Director, Bill Volland, is a pioneering entrepreneur. Bill, Christi Goode Day and the whole HSHFF team have built and are continuing to build a remarkable hub for Independent cinema and filmmakers.
They showcase a slate of diverse pictures from all over the world. HSWIFF doesn’t go for uninteresting, cookie-cutter fare. They champion unique, cutting edge, revolutionary, out-of-the-box movies.
Everything was run with an immaculate attention to detail. They are sincerely interested in the filmmakers and the films.
We are deeply honored to have won BEST FEATURE OF THE FESTIVAL.
Juliet Landau, Drusilla Buffy the Vampire Slayer


Tyler Mane, Actor/Producer Mane Entertainment Tyler is best known for his roles as, Sabretooth, Wolverine's foe, in the big-screen version of the Marvel comic "X-Men" and playing the iconic role of Michael Myers in the last two Rob Zombie remakes of "Halloween".

"What a great weekend of networking and screenings and sharing our love of filmmaking! We came away from the Hot Springs Horror Film Festival feeling like we suddenly had a much larger family. Can't wait to get back!!"
-Tyler Mane- Actor
(Michael Meyers in the movie Halloween)


Eileen Dietz, Actress Exorcist/Constantine/Planet of the Apes... The Demon who possesses Regan in "TheExorcist", also the Emmy-winning Helter-Skelter she was one of the Manson Gang.

“I have been a guest speaker at many, many film festivals and I gotta tell you all, The Hot Springs Horror Film Festival 2013 was !!@!$&!!ing fantastic. I had such an awesome time. Every short film and feature were of the utmost quality and so much fun as were the Filmmakers with whom I made lasting friendships. I can't say enough about the fantastic hosts. the incomparable Tamara Glynn and the always gracious and organized Bill Volland. I cannot wait for October to see everyone again.
-Eileen Dietz- Actress (Exorcist)

“Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival is a celebration of genre cinema by filmmakers for filmmakers. Located in one of Arkansas most treasured historic regions, the festival places special emphasis on education, in addition to showcasing quality independent motion pictures.”
-Justin Beahm- Fangoria Magazine

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HotSpringsHorror/.

Awards can include Trophies, “4 wall screenings,” sponsored prizes from film industry names, promotional items . Category winners, and some runners up get can get complementary fast-tracked into “FILMCOM” where they get a chance to pitch their next film to a finance and distribution panel. Qualified feature films and shorts can get help finding distribution. Please be advised that unless explicit arrangements have been discussed and agreed upon prior to the festival, it is imperative that you are physically present in order to receive your award.

CATEGORY RULES Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival
Guidelines, rules, and regulations of our festival/competition:

Not meeting eligibility requirements may be cause for disqualification.

Each film will be judged solely on its own merits. We only accept original productions of a horror, suspense, thriller, science fiction/fantasy or Documentary. Documentaries, comedies, animation and works of non-fiction related to the horror genre ARE acceptable for submission. We will not accept any hard core XXX adult material, any films that feature actual human/animal cruelty. ( and/or any depictions of actual human/animal torture, cruelty or death). Festival directors, members of the program and industry professionals are designated judges. Festival volunteers and special guests may also be appointed judges in some cases. The festival does not send out rejection letters. We will contact those filmmakers whose films are accepted to participate in the festival. Unless explicit arrangements have been discussed and agreed upon prior to the festival, it is imperative that you are physically present in order to receive your award.


1. Hot Springs Horror Film Festival and HSAFI will hold your submitted film for 1 year, after which, if you would like to resubmit, you can. All screening copies submitted to the festival, are kept by the Hot Springs Horror Film Festival and HSAFI for reuse at future festivals or screenings. Any exceptions must be pre-agreed upon by both parties.
2. Entrants must submit a downloadable viewing/preview copiy for consideration. Please test the download and be sure it is not over 9 gigabytes.
3. Entry forms and payments will not be processed without accompanying film downloads.
4. All entries must be in English or contain English subtitles (unless special arrangements have been made with festival).
5. All entries must be titled with the (RT) running time included.
6. We encourage submitting a downloadable trailer and as much publicity material as is available electronically.
7. Any materials that entrants wish to be seen by the programming committee should be submitted in duplicate with this application.
8. Exceptions to the festival regulations must be pre authorized by the festival director.
9. We reserve the right to combine categories and or awards.
10. If your film/video is selected for screening, you may be asked to provide another copy for projection purposes. This copy would be in addition to the online secure screener, already submitted.
11. We reserve the right to cancel a screening of any film submitted and or officially selected at anytime without notice.
12. We may use all or part of your film for promotions.
13. Films submitted into the "Short Film" category agree to give the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival the right to use and to include the film it in it's yearly Short Film compilation. Each Volume will be released world wide on all platforms every year. Proceeds from the sales of the short film compilation go to support the film festival.
14. Submitting your short film you are giving the festival the right to include it in our annual Short Film Compilation which It is distributed world wide on DVD VOD and other streaming platforms. This is non exclusive and does not give the festival the right to use the short film individually. The film will be apart of the "Best of the Festival" Short films and used only in the compilation with other short films submitted to the festival. (you may be asked to provide additional deliverables)

Delivery options and Shipping
1. Please use a large envelope for shipping, do not send your entries in a box (no boxes).
2. The cost of shipping an entry to the festival must be paid by the entrant. Collect or C.O.D. shipment will not be accepted.
3. All film submission mailings MUST be marked with the quote "no signature required" on the delivery option.*
4. Please be sure you have clearly marked on your DVD's or Blu-ray's:
A. the title of your film.
B. the RT (or running time)
C. the FilmFreeway four digit code (you will get this when you submit through FilmFreeway).

Ship To:


Certification of Entrant
I/We, the undersigned, acknowledge and agree:

1. I/We have read, understated and fully comply with all submission eligibility information, Submission Guidelines, Terms and Conditions of Entry and Entry Eligibility Requirements.
2. To the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in this document are true;
3. This film or video is not subject to any litigation nor is threatened by any litigation;
4. I/We am duly authorized to submit this film to the festival;
5. I/We hold the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival and Hot Springs Arts & Film Institute (hereafter known as HSAFI) harmless from any damage to the print(s) or tape(s) en route or otherwise during the course of the festival’s possession of the film;
6 I/We hold the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival and HSAFI, its owners, management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, volunteers and etc. harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from my entry.
7. I/We certify that I have full rights to the use of the music in the entered work.
8.. I/We give permission for the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival and HSAFI to use stills, titles, copy, and/or information from the film for promotional purposes
9. I/We give permission for the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival, HSAFI and its agents to screen the film at the Festival as well as any Festival presentations, programs, and/or events including our short film compilation distributed world wide. The festival's yearly world wide release entitled the "Best Short Films of the Hot Springs International Horror Thriller and Sci fi Film Festival" a compilation of hand picked short films submitted to the festival.
10. I/We also warrant the submitted material does not defame or invade the rights of any person living or dead and I/we fully indemnify the Festival against any claim made for such violations of law.
11 . I/We understand that failure to adhere to the Festival rules or Terms and Conditions will result in disqualification and forfeiture of entry fee.
12. I/We agree to hold the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival and HSAFI harmless from and defend them against all claims, demands, losses, damages, judgments, liabilities, and expenses (including attorneys fees) arising out of or in connection with any and all claims of third parties, whether or not groundless, based on any film submitted to the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival.
13. These terms and conditions must be printed and signed by all submitting parties before they will be eligible for competition or screening.

By submitting your film to the festival you are agreeing to these term and conditions.


Overall Rating
  • James Morris

    Sincerely wish I could have attended, but from the start, the festival answered any questions and were quick to respond with any issues. Will absolutely submit again in the future.

    November 2023
  • Yvan Gauthier

    We had a great time at the festival showing our film THE VAMPIRE PROJECT which also won the BEST HORROR FEATURE AWARD! Great team, cool historic venue, awesome movie selection and Hot Springs is a beautiful place to visit. Looking forward to going back with out next film!

    November 2023
  • Joseph Sernio

    Great festival! Great crew! Great films! Thank you for supporting independent film and filmmakers. Congrats to all of the official selections, nominations and winners!!

    November 2023
  • Thank you so much for including my first horror short "Consumed" we were so honored to be among some incredible films this year. Hope to see you again in the future.

    November 2023
  • Glen Coburn

    All film festivals are hit or miss. The Hot Spring Horror Film Festival falls in the first category. The festival director, Bill Volland, was totally accommodating and accessible. He put together a fun event, screening unusual independent films that would never have been seen anywhere else.The vibe was casual and low-key. And the venue was awesome. A cool, funky former speakeasy. I loved it! Film soundtrack composer, Alan Howarth (Escape From New York, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Poltergeist) was truly the star of the show. The biggest problem with the festival is that it is not well attended. This event deserves a much bigger following. I traveled to the festival from Dallas and it was worth it. Of course I’m partial because I won the award for Directors Rising Star! But I will definitely attend the festival in the future.

    November 2023