MSF was created with the purpose of embracing, recognizing, and showcasing short film. We LOVE short films and discovered a need in the festival community for a new way to approach the short film. Films that slam an edgy topic in less than forty minutes are true masterpieces.

Of course, traditional and mainstream shorts are also valuable. Everyone loves a great comedy or an informative documentary. There are a myriad of genres that our team of industry professionals are eager to see and evaluate. Our reviewers have knowledge and experience in the genre of films they evaluate. They also understand the complexities and challenges associated with creating independent films.

In addition, winning films are screened by the public. These individuals are your target demographic. They give valuable insight to both the quality of your film and its potential marketability. When you win here, you are winning with the public.


All winning entries are promoted through our social media and website with any combination of log line, synopsis, film stills, poster, and/or trailer.

For this purpose, we recommend that projects must be fully entered on FilmFreeway, including film stills, production pictures, downloadable poster, and trailer or teaser.

All projects officially selected in each season receive an Awards laurel and custom digital certificate. Some of the award-winning films are screened at the Plaza Theatre, Miamisburg, Ohio. We accept .mov and .mp4 files that are converted in DCP with no fees.

Monthly Award winners in each the annual cycle are eligible for the nominations for the annual awards. Additionally, our committee can decide to nominate other award-winning or finalists projects.

As an additional reward, the award winners from each monthly film category will receive a small cash award of $50. Cash awards apply only to overall genre awards (i.e. best drama, best animated short, etc.) and NOT to talent recognition (i.e. best actor, best supporting actress, best ensemble cast, etc.) OR technical/crew/promotion awards (i.e. best sound, best trailer, best director, etc.)

Special Content Award:

The "on the edge award" is an ANNUAL committee-selected award. This SINGLE film is selected from all entries in all categories/genres submitted in the small monthly festivals. The criteria for this award may be any combination of: controversial/timely subject matter, innovative technical components, appropriate use of illustrative imagery, language, human behavior, or social exploration.

Please note that there is a fine line between "on the edge" and "over the edge". Films celebrating or glorifying hate, abuse, violence, prejudice, exclusion, sexism, racism, ableism or other offensive content will be disqualified.

Some categories may have no winners if there are no/inadequate submissions meeting the requirements. Submissions in categories without adequate participation will be offered inclusion in the following month's event, or a refund of submission fees.


1) Guidelines
a) Submission
-When submitting for subcategories, it is IMPORTANT that you select a MAIN category AS WELL AS whatever subcategories you may be interested in. If all subcategories is selected without also selecting a main category (genre), your work will not be considered for main category consideration.
-Download permissions MUST be supplied for all entries so that films may be screened publicly.
- Film must have been created no earlier than 2017
- Submission Screeners must adhere to guidelines below.
- Submission must be sent by via Online Screener to FilmFreeway.
- All Accepted Submissions will be notified via personal e-mail.
- All Non-Accepted Submissions will be notified via e-mail.
- Check submission platform account at festival notification deadline for updates.
- Deadline Dates on FilmFreeway are final deadlines
- Do not send cash or any payments or requests via mail.
- Any work revised or modified after submission, must be re-submitted on FilmFreeway following FilmFreeway's terms and conditions.
-We offer a LIMITED number of waiver codes to assist film makers who may not be in a position to finance entry fees for submission to MSF festivals. Waivers must be submitted via FilmFreeway contact page in writing. If a request for a waiver code is approved by our organizers, the creator MUST understand that he/she has all rights and privileges of any other submitted project; however, CASH PRIZE PORTION OF PACKAGE IS FORFEITED BY THE SUBMITTER TO MAINTAIN FAIRNESS FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS. Projects utilizing waivers or discounts are not identified, publicized, or segregated by MSF in any way out of respect for the creators and integrity of our program.

b) Exhibition

- Exhibition Print RUN TIME must never run longer than Submitted Version.
- Other DCP may be allowed (depending on venue discretion).
- Films must be non-watermarked.
- Multiple prints must have matching chapters and aspect ratios.
- No menus, no test footage, no pre-film footage, on any Exhibition Print.
- Venue Print Requirements may change without notice, at sole discretion of venue.

Business office mailing address:

Midwest Slam Fest
8401 Claude Thomas Road
Suite 16
Franklin, OH 45005

II.) Rules and Regulations:

- Submitter must be 18 years of age or older to enter competition.
- Adult Guardian or Parent may submit on your behalf of minors.
- By submitting to MSF, submitter is:
a) endorsing copyright of film and images
b) granting permission to use the images and content from the submission in advertisements and promotions both for any screening of the submitted film, but also in any promotions for MSF for the 48 months following first receipt of the submission.
- Festival times may be subject to change.
- All fees are non-refundable unless a submission category does not receive adequate submissions to be considered for a legitimate inclusion AND submitter opts for film not to be carried over to the following month's event.
- In submitting, MSF is given the right to screen submission at no charge to the fest.
- MSF reserves the right to refuse service to anyone.
- All films submitted for review are consenting permission to have MSF publicly screen the film
- Not all submissions received will be selected for live exhibition, nor given award honors.
- By submitting via FilmFreeway, you are agreeing to these Rules as well as the MSF Terms and Conditions:

III.) Terms and conditions:

If any provision of this Agreement is held to be invalid or unenforceable, such provision shall be struck and the remaining provisions shall be enforced. You agree that this Agreement may be automatically assigned by the MIDWEST SLAM FEST (MSF), in its sole discretion, to a third party.

Section headings are for reference purposes only. Our failure to act with respect to a breach by you or others does not waive our right to act with respect to subsequent or similar breaches.

This Agreement, along with any other terms and conditions listed by MSF, sets forth the entire understanding and agreement between us with respect to the subject matter hereof. The provisions of this Agreement and any ancillary terms and conditions will survive termination or expiration to the extent necessary to carry out the intentions of the parties.

Governing Law.
You acknowledge and agree that this Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the internal laws of the State of Ohio, excluding conflict of laws provisions thereof that would indicate the application of the laws of any other jurisdiction and you hereby submit to exclusive jurisdiction in the federal and state courts of Ohio. You agree to receive service of process through certified mail or by other means sanctioned by law, and you expressly waive any claim of improper venue and any claim that such courts are an inconvenient forum.

You agree to indemnify, defend and hold The MIDWEST SLAM FEST harmless from any claim, expense or demand, including without limitation reasonable attorney fees, made by any third party due to or arising out of your breach of this Agreement, or your violation of any law or the rights of a third party.

By agreeing, Submitter agrees to abide by all the Terms laid forth in the General Festival Rules listed for MSF, including FESTIVAL RULES AND REGULATIONS noted below:

Festival Guidelines:

- Film must not currently have major distribution in U.S.A. that conflicts with exhibition dates of the festival.
- International films with a spoken language other than ENGLISH must be subtitled (in English).
- Festival screening times are subject to delay, change, or cancellation.
- All fees are non-refundable unless otherwise specified in writing with cause.
- MSF reserves the right to refuse service.
- MSF reserves the right to remove screenings from program at any time.
- Films submitted for review are consenting permission to publicly screen the film submitted (at least) one time in the next 48 months as to be determined by MSF.
- By submitting your film for review submitter is a) endorsing copyright of film and images and b) granting permission to use the images and content from the submission in advertisements and promotions both for any screening of the submitted film, but also in any promotions for MSF in general for the 48 months following first receipt of the submission.
- By submitting you agree MSF has the right to screen your film with no additional exhibition fees or charges to the festival from filmmakers or film copyright owners.
- Festival is not responsible for broken or non-functioning films.
- Submitter must be 18 years of age or older (or have your parent/guardian to submit on your behalf) to enter the competition.
- In case of non-functioning Exhibition Print, festival may use any submitted prints.
- By submitting with payment, you are agreeing to abide by all the above terms, rules, and guidelines, as well as the following Terms and Conditions:

All content contained on MIDWEST SLAM FEST (MSF) website, including but not limited to photographs, text, graphics, logos, icons, images and software (collectively, "Content"), is the property of MIDWEST SLAM FEST and is protected by U.S. and/or international copyright laws.

You acknowledge and agree that your only remedy for failures, delays or interruptions with respect to the ordering of and delivery of passes ordered by you is limited to a refund for such passes, with such refunds issued at the sole discretion and judgement of the MIDWEST SLAM FEST.

Entrants warrant that they have the legal right to enter film work to the MIDWEST SLAM FEST. As Director/Producer/Submitter of the Film, entrants have submitted and represent and warrant to the MIDWEST SLAM FEST that the Film and all parts thereof are original; that the Film does not contravene the rights of any person or entity and that entrants own or control the Film and all parts thereof and have the sole authority to submit the Film to the MIDWEST SLAM FEST; the Film entrants submitted to the MIDWEST SLAM FEST is not subject to nor threatened by any litigation. Entrants acknowledge that no fiduciary or confidential relationship now exists between the Festival and entrants, and entrants further acknowledge that no such relationship is established by these guidelines, the submission of the Film, or by the MIDWEST SLAM FEST acceptance, review or retention of your submission (film, screenplay, etc.).

Overall Rating
  • Excited. Thrilled. Can't wait. January 2023!

    September 2022
  • Rob Tode

    Thank you for the nomination, but so sad we never got any further results or information about the winners.

    September 2022
  • Thanks for including us in the latest Midwest Slam Fest! We were honored that "65" was a part! Great festival!

    August 2022
  • Jack Truman

    So proud to have our film THE FRINGES OF BURLESQUE as a part of the festival!!!

    July 2022
  • I am really honoured to be part of the Winners of this festival. And I am happy that our movie will be part of the annual event as well. Thank you.

    June 2022