The 16th Annual Imagine Science Film Festival will take place in October 13-20, 2023.


As part of the submission process, we encourage everyone to join HABITAT, our ecosystem and networking tool for scientists, artists & educators on our sister platform

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Propelled by a movement led by working scientists in 2008 to broaden how science is depicted in media, the Imagine Science Film Festival is committed to promoting a high-level dialogue between scientists and filmmakers. But not only through the usual channels -- where many other science film outlets focus on classic television-style documentary or science fiction, ISFF radically expands the conversation and reaches diverse audiences through a blend of inventive documentaries, thought-provoking scientific fiction, data and visualizations straight from the labs, and stunning experimental film. The resulting hybrid programming defies preconceived notions and provides a unique forum for new ideas and interdisciplinary collaboration, as well as some of the finest filmmaking in the world. The festival also actively cultivates forward-thinking scientific cinema through annual Symbiosis competitions challenging scientists and filmmakers to work together to create groundbreaking new work.

The festival takes places at science and art venues around New York city. This year, we will be partnering with these same organizations but we will be putting a spotlight our feature and shorts programming to serve an audience thirsty for compelling and accurate scientific storytelling

Our films, are eligible for several awards. Awards are sponsored by a myriad of like-minded science and art organizations.

For Features:

- Science New Wave (IN COMPETITION) - features that propose singular and hybrid ways to tell scientific stories.

For Shorts:

The In Vivo Award: Awarded to the short film that best exemplifies science in narrative filmmaking in a compelling, credible, and inspiring manner.

The Theme-Sensitive Award: Awarded to the short film that conveys bold storytelling and hybrid aesthetics and narrative.

The Avant-Garde Award: Awarded to the short film that best emphasizes narrative storytelling related to this year's theme.

The Symbiosis Award is awarded to the film made in this year's Symbiosis competition that best embraces the idea of collaboration, scientific storytelling, and originality. It is given every year for the Symbiosis scientist / filmmaker competition by Science Sandbox.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Every year, we pay tribute to some noteworthy films, that we feel are particularly timely.

ISFF is always thrilled to received films that address scientific or technological themes and stories, or that have a leading character who is a scientist, engineer, or mathematician.

SUBMISSIONS need to adhere to the underlying requirement of IMAGINE SCIENCE which is that science and/or scientists need to be presented in a narrative framework - in a compelling yet credible manner.

Submissions must be in English or have English subtitles, and there must be a preview AND screening copy available in English or with English subtitles, excepting music videos and films without dialogue.

If your film is accepted, ISFF generally screens from digital files. We may also be able to discuss screening in other formats as allowed by our venues and programming each year.

All filmmakers will receive notification, whether or not their film is chosen to screen. Notifications will be sent out on or before October 1st. Please DO NOT contact us to find out whether or not your film has been received. We do not have a large enough staff to respond to such inquiries.

ISFF accepts submissions for PREVIEW through private screener links

Feel free to send along any additional press material, cast and crew bios or any other information about your film. We will say, however, that it will most likely NOT influence our selections in any way.

Should your work be selected to be part of the Imagine Science Film Festival, Imagine Science Films will reserve the right to show your film during the period.

We will also ask filmmakers if they would like to participate in our Satellite festivals and be featured in our video magazine, These will only be upon requests and optional.

If your work is accepted as part of ISFF we would love for you to be able to attend the screening of your work. Unfortunately, Imagine Science Films is not typically able to cover travel or accommodation.

We also encourage you to submit your film to our partnering platform that curates monthly issues, weekly spotlights and a LIVE cinema program. To submit for consideration, please send your film to :

Overall Rating
  • The ISFF is an excellent festival with a wide, eclectic selection of film screenings. It was a pleasure dealing with the organizers, and communication was very prompt and professional. To have my short premiere at the festival was an absolute privilege--my only regret being that I couldn't attend in-person!

    January 2023
  • Serge Dentin

    Great festival! Long life to ISFF!

    November 2022
  • Derek Dabkoski

    What a fun, intimate festival! Our little film, Derek Changes His Mind, was given great attention, and offered to be the featured project on the sister science/film streaming platform, Labocine. Highly suggest submitting your film to be screened amongst other exceptional projects in the heart of New York City.

    October 2022
  • tim grabham

    I have been fortunate to screen a number of films with Imagine over the last few years and they have always been incredibly supportive. The curation of the festival is always eyeopening and fascinating so I was thrilled to be a part of it again this year. Highly recommended.

    October 2021
  • Gavin Hipkins

    A privilege to be part of Imagine in 2021!

    October 2021