PUFF is thrilled to announce Academy Award winning writer/director JOHN PATRICK SHANLEY as the Jury President for the 4th annual Picture's Up! Film Festival, taking place August 25th-27th, 2023 at The Lee Strasberg Theater in Hollywood, CA.

John's films include JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO, MOONSTRUCK, DOUBT, and WILD MOUNTAIN THYME. Along with his Oscar for Best Screenplay for MOONSTRUCK, John has received numerous other awards including a Tony Award, Pulitzer Prize, and many more. His work has dazzled, challenged, and delighted audiences for over four decades and we are honored to have him serve as Jury President for 2023. His insight and expertise will be invaluable as he guides us in shaping this year's lineup and selecting the recipients of the coveted PUFFY Awards.


PUFF is more than a festival. It’s a community.

Once a year we gather in West Hollywood to celebrate and promote 50 of the world’s best up and coming filmmakers the best way we know how. By throwing a massive party and inviting all of our friends!

That means filmmakers, execs, agents, managers, casting directors, actors and actresses. Everyone that a filmmaker could be looking to meet.

We are filmmakers ourselves and we started PUFF because we were sick of festivals that seemed more interested in promoting films than the people that made them. So when the party is over, we’re just getting started!


JUDGES THAT MATTER: PUFF has judges from all aspects of the entertainment business. From Managers, Producers and Studio Execs, to working Actors and Screenwriters. We want our filmmakers to have their work exposed to people who’ve been where they are now and can offer insight into navigating this business.


Picture’s Up! has a $500 Grand Prize for the festival’s winning film and every filmmaker receives a package of exciting perks such as free access to The Strasberg Institute’s film studio and casting spaces.

Winners will also receive a 4-month InkTip Pro Membership. As an InkTip Pro Member, thousands of filmmakers can find and read your scripts, and you'll be able to pitch directly to production companies every week. With over 3,000 options and 400 movies made, InkTip is the place for independent film.

In between screenings, filmmakers are invited to get a drink in the beautiful Theatre Lounge and get to know their fellow filmmakers.

The PUFFY’s Award Show: Every year filmmakers tell us that the highlight of the weekend was our closing night award show. We go all out as our founders host a night of clips from all the nominated films, laughs and tears as we hand out awards and gifts from our sponsors and hear speeches from our winners.


We don’t care about genre. We don’t care about budget. We care about voices. We’re looking for filmmakers who have something to say, and we want to help you say it! We use the submission categories to make sure that the judge most likely to enjoy and champion your film, is the person that sees it.

Our programmers meticulously craft each hour long block of films around a different theme, so when you walk into a PUFF screening, you never know what you’re going to get!

Submit your short films under 35 minutes in any of the following genres:
Television Pilot
Music Video
Super Shorts (< 5 min)

PUFF is based in Los Angeles, CA at the historic Marilyn Monroe Theatre.

Best of Festival - $500 PRIZE
Best Comedy Short
Best Drama Short
Best Documentary Short
Best Horror/Thriller Short
Best Foreign Language Short
Best Sci-Fi Short
Best Pilot
Best Emerging Artist
Best Music Video
Best Experimental Short
Best Director
Best Screenplay
Best Performance by an Actor
Best Performance by an Actress

All nominees will be receiving a package of perks and gifts from our exciting partners!

1. Submission Format
* Films must be submitted via online screener ONLY. We DO NOT accept DVD screeners. * Vimeo or YouTube links are preferred.
* Only one version of the film will be reviewed by programmers - updated cuts will not be reviewed.

2. Submission Eligibility
* All submissions must have been completed after 1 January 2018.
* There is no premiere policy - we accept films that have screened at other festivals or online

3. Submission Fee
*All submissions for PUFF are to be paid through FilmFreeway platform. Submission fees are non-refundable.

4. Selection of Films
*Submissions are reviewed by a panel of judges and selected under the following criteria:
- Quality of narrative and production values.
- Independent nature of the production.

5. Notification
* PUFF endeavors to complete all selection procedures by May 15, 2022 and inform all submitting parties if their film has been accepted or not after that time. Successful submissions will receive a Filmmaker Festival Kit that will include information on press and publicity, screener requirements, contact information and how to make the most of participating in the Festival.

6. Festival Screenings - selected films ONLY
* PUFF aspires to provide the most quality projection possible but will not be held liable for any failure in the technical quality of the projection during screenings, nor will fees be refunded in any such case. PUFF assumes that the submitting party or filmmaker(s) has spot checked the submission.

7. Scheduling - selected films ONLY
* Screenings are scheduled at the discretion of PUFF. Every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule however PUFF reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. PUFF will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a change in scheduling.

8. Promotion - selected films ONLY
*Selected films acknowledge that PUFF reserves the right to promote the films using both images and video that you provide.

Overall Rating
  • Amazing Time! Pictures Up is a festival that is clearly for the filmmaker and movie-goers. The entire experience was awesome from the first line of communication to the amazing screening they held. Griffin and his team truly put their hearts and soul into making this film festival amazing. You cant ask for a better festival and I cant wait to submit again in the future!

    August 2022
  • Second year attending PUFF, and I can't say enough fantastic things about this fest. Griffin, Alyssa, and Paul are wonderful and really put in the work to make this an interactive fest for both the filmmakers and the attendees.

    August 2022
  • An amazing festival with a wonderful selection of films and filmmakers. Thanks to the organizers for a truly wonderful experience!

    August 2022
  • Starks Films

    PUFF was a really great film festival that was friendly, great films, great people, and very well organized. I can see this film festival growing bigger and bigger every year. Thank you for nominating my film as best documentary. I will definitely be spreading the word about this film festival to my peers.

    July 2022
  • Joe LoBianco

    What a great festival! "Dinner For Two" was so excited to be selected and receive the award of "Best Actor". Paul and Griffin make you feel welcome and the selection was an honor be be included in. Our team member Maarten Cornelis was able to attend and had nothing but praise about the festival. We will definitely be sending in future movies to the festival.

    July 2022