Our Mission
Dedicated to the exhibition and preservation of independent film, we showcase the art and power of storytelling worldwide and gather communities to share diverse cultures, viewpoints and conversation. With support from our many community partners, we celebrate independent film as the rich, cultural, economic and educational asset it is.

Our story
It was the creative combination of great friendships, local film lovers, filmmakers and Hollywood talent that lead to the first Kansas International Film Festival nearly two decades ago. Back then, the goal was to bring the diversity of film to the Heartland while celebrating Kansas City’s vibrant local film community. Today the festival is that and more, screening more than 150 films annually with submissions from more than 50 countries worldwide.

The KIFF Experience
Filmmakers from around the world submit their work and attend our festival because of its storied history and reputation for celebrating filmmakers with Midwestern roots and beyond.
While KIFF attracts Academy Award-winning films, provides major networking opportunities and large events drawing community awareness, the festival never loses site of its roots, which are the local art, music and film communities that support each other.
In celebration of those connections, KIFF features local talent annually during the festival with our KIFF Local series and other featured programming at the Glenwood Arts Theatre throughout the year.

The festival has grown from just a few hundred filmgoers to thousands over the past 18 years with a wide range of guests and celebrities attending, including Actor and activist, Ed Asner, horror filmmaker George Romero, special effects wizard Tom Savini, experimental filmmakers Guy Maddin, Barbara Hammer and Stan Brakhage, executive director of Women Make Movies.

Jury Awards: KIFF is proud to present Jury Awards for the best Social Justice Documentary ,Best Feature Narrative Film, Best Animation. The five award finalists in each category are listed in the festival program, and winners will be announced at the Filmmaker Recognition Brunch on Sunday, October 14th at 10:30 a.m.

Cash Awards ($350.00) both Documentary and Narrative Jury Award Winners

Audience Awards: Audience participation at its best. Audience members vote for their favorite Narrative and Documentary Films. Winners will be announced on Monday, October 22nd.

Liability: In case of loss or damage to theatrical print, the Festival is limited to compensating the producer or distributor for the cost of replacing the lost or damaged footage.

Consent: Participation in the Kansas International Film Festival implies understanding and acceptance of festival regulations.

The festival accepts exhibition formats: Blu-Ray Preferred, DVD or DCP.

1. The number, times, dates and locations of screenings of films are at the discretion of the Kansas International Film Festival. By entering the festival and if you film is selected, you are giving the Kansas International Film Festival permission to play your film without a screening fee. The film can not be withdrawn.

2. The print supplier will be responsible for the cost of shipment to the Festival. The Festival will return the print postage prepaid to the address provided by the supplier on the final acceptance contract. If you have a change of address, please contact us immediately to assure the safe return of your print.

3. The Kansas International Film Festival provides insurance for loss or damage up to a maximum value of $200 or the cost of replacement (whichever is less).

4. The Kansas International Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize a clip not to exceed 90 seconds in length from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

Overall Rating
  • Jim Spena

    The KIFF was awesome. It's in a fun old theater that's completely devoted to the festival and the crowds were good. Well staffed, good management, great experience!

    January 2018
  • Badar Shahid

    I would recommend all filmmakers to submit their film to KIFF. The staff is friendly and did a great job helping me in the proper submission of the exhibition format and film materials.

    January 2018
  • Becky Smith

    The Kansas Int'l Film Festival is a terrific event with passionate volunteers, a warm and welcoming atmosphere and strong films. I have been to the festival with two different films, two different years, and came away with new colleagues and great memories.

    December 2017
  • Elena Beuca

    I couldn't go to this festival but my husband went to represent our film D-love. He is rarely impressed with a festival, but he couldn't stop talking about KIFF and what a amazing experience he had there . They have a amazing group of people who are film lovers and they celebrate filmmakers. Highly recommend them and I can't wait to go there next year!!

    November 2017
  • Scott Petersen

    I had a wonderful time showing my doc at the festival. All the films are screened at a multiplex so it was quite easy to theater hop. I especially like the mug with my movie's name engraved on it in the swag bag.

    November 2017