Minnesota WebFest is the first film festival in the Midwest dedicated to the emerging web series format and a member of the Web Series World Cup. Since our founding, our mission has expanded to include many different forms of web entertainment, including web series and podcasts.
We take immense pride in championing diverse human voices and perspectives.
Now entering our seventh year, we are part of a larger event called the North Star Story Summit that includes Catalyst Stories and the Duluth Superior Film Festival. From Tuesday through Sunday, professionals from all corners of the entertainment industry and the world will be in Duluth for networking, education, and entertainment.
The core Minnesota WebFest events take place Tuesday-Thursday with the goal of bringing the best web entertainment in the world to Minnesota and showcase top Minnesota talent to the world. Our mission is to identify high quality web entertainment, to promote the works of the creators, and to highlight the diverse voices that this medium empowers.
Throughout the festival you will be treated to screenings on state of the art theater equipment, networking opportunities, educational talks, and panels from web series experts around the world. Network with other creators and industry experts in downtown Duluth, Minnesota. Our Awards Ceremony completes the event, where we hand out our awards, decided by an independent jury panel.
And of course, we are by no means all work and no play! There are lots of fun and unique events you can enjoy on the North Shore of Lake Superior!
A key part of our mission is bringing public exposure to these amazing works. As such, each year we strive to keep our event free and open to both creators and the public.
---SHORT FORM EPISODIC---
Best Action Series
Best Comedy Series
Best Dramatic Series
Best Dramedy Series
Best Documentary/Reality Series
Best Horror Series
Best Mockumentary Series
Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Series
Best Sketch Comedy Series
Best Thriller Series
Best Comedic Ensemble
Best Comedic Performance
Best Screenplay (script entries only)
Best Dramatic Ensemble
Best Dramatic Performance
Best Original Music
Best Original Score
Best Production Design
Excellence in Web Series Promotion
Best Representation of Communities of Color
Best Representation of LGBTQ+ Communities
Best Representation of Women
Best Pilot (pilot entries only)
Best Student Series
Best of Minnesota
Best of the United States
Best of the World
Best Sound Design
Best Game Master
Best Dramatic Performance
Best Comedic Performance
Best New Concept (concept entries only)
Best Actual Play
In addition, our partner festivals make direct selections from our pool of Minnesota works.
We do not accept for any category pornographic works nor do we accept any works that promote violence or hatred. All works must have been completed AFTER December 1, 20202 for consideration.
NOTE FOR PODCAST SUBMISSIONS: When you join FilmFreeway, you can upload your audio file by categorizing your work as "Music/Songwriting." It's currently the only category that allows you to upload audio-only files. So, get your work up and submit to get the film festival experience! Our partner festival New Jersey WebFest has a great set of instructions at: https://www.newjerseywebfest.com/film-freeway-podcasts.
Short Form Series
A short-form series is any episodic work consisting of three or more episodes. When submitting a short-form series, you are actually placing your full season under consideration. If your work is a mini-series, the mini-series is the one season. By short-form, we mean less than 30 minutes. However, the sweet spot is really under 15 minutes. If you have only a pilot, submit to the SERIES PILOT category.
- Must be a short-form series (episodes <30 minutes)
- You are submitting a SPECIFIC SEASON of your series. That season should have AT LEAST 3 episodes.
- You cannot submit a season that was previously accepted into Minnesota WebFest
- We accept any and all genres
- Your screener can be of a single episodes, but it's better if it's the full season in consideration
The Series Pilot category is for creators with a pilot for a series or season and are using that pilot in preparation for completing a full season.
- Must be a single episode of a short-form series for a season that has yet to be made
- The episode must be less than 30 minutes in length to qualify
- You cannot submit an episode from a season with more than two completed episodes
- You cannot submit a pilot that has previously been accepted to Minnesota WebFest
We want the script for a single episode of a series that best demonstrates your ability to write for short-form content. Because of the focus on short-form, we will read a maximum of 10 pages.
- Must be 10 pages or less
- You cannot submit a script previously accepted into the festival
- You CAN submit a script for a series that has been previously accepted to other categories (pilot, series)
For trailers for short-form series.
- Must be less than 2 minutes in length
- Trailer may not have been accepted to a prior Minnesota WebFest trailer competition
The Podcast category is for creators with a new or established podcast.
- Your podcast must have at least 3 episodes
- You may submit a podcast of any length, but only the first 30 minutes will be considered
- You may submit a podcast that has been previously accepted to Minnesota WebFest so long as the submission represents content created for the podcast since the edition in which you competed (e.g. if you had a podcast in MNWF 21, only new content created after Sept 26, 2021 is allowed)
The Podcast Concept category is for creators with a new idea for a podcast and who have either produced a single episode or created a proof-of-concept in preparation for producing the larger podcast.
- You may submit an episode of any length, but only the first 30 minutes will be considered
- The podcast should have no more than 2 completed episodes
TikToks and Reels
For TikToks and Reels, we accept any ultra-short videos designed for social media. It does not have to be for TikTok or Instagram, and it does not even need to have appeared online.
- Must submit at least 3 videos and no more than 6
- Videos should be no longer than 60 seconds each
- Only one submission in this category per creator
HOW TO SUBMIT:
1. Select your category:
* SHORT FORM SERIES
* SERIES PILOT
* PODCAST CONCEPT
2. If your work was made in Minnesota or by a Minnesota resident, indicate "Made in Minnesota".
3. FOR EPISODIC CONTENT (web series + podcast): Your screener should include at least one episode, but more can be helpful for the screeners.
4. FOR PILOTS AND CONCEPTS: Submit ONLY your pilot. You may not submit a pilot for a series that has been previously accepted unless the pilot is the only work from a new season. You may not submit a concept for a podcast that has previously been accepted, period.
5. Submit all required information and pay the required fee(s) in accordance with the relevant submission window.
6. ELIGIBLE CONTENT
All submitted content must satisfy the following requirements:
-The content must have been developed for online audiences. Non-exclusive development for online audiences is sufficient.
- The content must be submitted by a creator/producer aged 18 or older.
- If your content is unfinished or pending distribution, you may submit password-protected unreleased content or Works in Progress for consideration. You can add a password to protect your video uploads on your FilmFreeway project page.
- Selected projects will be required to upload additional information to assist with the promotional and screening processes. You agree to have all your information uploaded by the deadline which will be in late summer 2023.
- The content must include English subtitles to accompany any important dialogue or visual references that are not spoken or written in English.
- Student series must have a director and/or writer that is a registered student at the time of creation.
- YOU AGREE TO PROVIDE CAPTIONS FOR OUR SCREENINGS SHOULD YOU BE SELECTED.
7. INELLIGIBLE CONTENT
The following content formats are not eligible for screening during Minnesota WebFest and will be rejected regardless of their adherence to any other requirements:
-Corporate videos promoting a product or service (does not include branded narratives)
-Short or feature films
A note on branded narratives: Many web series and podcasts are "branded content" in that a brand has sponsored them and that brand has been incorporated into the narrative. Those series and podcasts ARE ELIGIBLE. What we are trying to exclude are "informercial" like things where the subject matter is the brand itself.
1. All submitters must submit their content to Minnesota WebFest through FilmFreeway.
2. All submitters must submit to at least 1 category.
3. A single submission may be considered for more than one category, provided that an additional entry with additional submission fee is paid for each additional category.
4. Multiple projects (except for TikToks and Reels) may be submitted for consideration provided that an additional submission fee is paid for each entry.
5. All submission fees are non-refundable. It is up to you to understand the entry rules.
6. Submitting does not guarantee your series as an Official Selection of Minnesota WebFest 2022.
7. The Festival prefers that the submitter is the creator/producer of the project, however in order to submit content on the behalf of its creator/producer, the contact information of the primary creator/producer must be provided in order to document them as the festival’s main point of contact.
8. The submitter must have obtained legal copyright to publicly screen their submitted content and all intellectual property contained therein including, but not limited to, music, lyrics, written work, photos, video content, artwork, and media excerpts.
9. Official Selections will receive a a free copy of the Mac-based captioning app Imaginary Captions courtesy of festival sponsor Imaginary Productions.
In order to be screened at Minnesota WebFest and eligible for judging:
A. All non-English language series MUST provide English language subtitles.
B. All English language series MUST provide English language captions.
Subtitles and/or captions may be embedded in the video or provided as a separate file in SRT format.
TERMS & CONDITIONS:
-Minnesota WebFest reserves the right to amend these Guidelines at any time.
-Failure to meet the eligibility requirements will lead to disqualification.
-Disqualification will not entitle a submitter to a refund of the submission fee.
-By submitting your content, you represent that you have acquired all legal rights to publicly screen all content within your submission.
-Minnesota WebFest reserves the right to determine screening conditions for all Official Selections.
-Minnesota WebFest reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to add content advisory disclaimers to any content screened, if deemed necessary, for any reason.
-If a submitter’s content is selected, a Notice of Official Selection shall be emailed to the to the email address provided by the submitter in their FilmFreeway profile on the notification date.
-Announcements identifying the Official Selections will be posted online on the Minnesota WebFest website and social media channels on the notification date.
-If you have any questions about your eligibility, contact us and we will assess your submission on a case-by-case basis.
-Minnesota WebFest participants agree to not hold Minnesota WebFest, the Northern Film Alliance, its employees, directors and representatives responsible for any and all losses, damages, rights, claims and actions of any kind in connection with the event or resulting from acceptance, possession or use of any prize.
-All state & federal laws apply.