This is the 3rd annual PopCon International Film Festival (PIFF) competition for PopCon, but we are in our 9th year as a physical convention. We are opting to do another hybrid event. The in-person film festival portion of the PIFF begins Thursday, June 2, 2022 and concludes Sunday, June 5, 2022. The virtual portion of the festival will he held July 7 - 10, 2022 and will feature films, post screening Q&A's, celebrity panels, filmmaker panels and more.

PopCon prides itself as being Indy's "only" locally owned and operated large pop culture fan event. PopCon will be programming a full-lineup film festival. Filmmakers from around the world are invited to submit their short/feature film and short/feature screenplays in multiple genres. The film festival will be honoring films of several pop culture genres, including but NOT limited to: Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Anime/Animation, Horror, Action/Adventure, Fan Film, Supernatural/Thriller, Documentary, Internet Culture & Gaming/Sports.

PopCon continues to bring some of the largest names in pop culture to Indianapolis each year, but the event’s true mission is to give creators – of all kinds – a platform to find new audiences. Instead of focusing on one specific fandom, PopCon flips the script on the typical con experience by focusing on all genres of pop culture fandom. The film festival is an obvious expansion of that mission.

The film festival will be in addition to all the other programming at PopCon over the event’s weekend. The 7th Annual PopCon Podcast Awards, the 9th Annual Ultimate Cosplay Championships, and dozens of fan panels and workshops will be alongside video gaming, laser tag, escape rooms, state-of-the-art virtual reality offerings, and 24-hour board gaming. PopCon will also continue to have the best selection of vendors for fans to enjoy.

Upon filmmakers request and written consent, official selections can be submitted for distribution consideration to several of our domestic and international film distribution partners. NOTE- films already available free online are not eligible for submission to distributors.

Each Official Selection will receive the following:
(1) Three-day Pass (in-person event ticket) to Indy PopCon (full convention & film festival)
(1) ticket to Virtual PopCon (July 7-10, 2022),
PopCon gift bag (in person only)
An official PopCon International Film Festival welcome letter.

Award trophies will be given for the following:
-Best Horror
-Best Thriller (added 4/26/2022)
-Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy
-Best International Film
-Best Feature
-Best Short
-Best Director
-Best Actress
-Best Actor
-Best Cinematography
-Best Special Effects (SFX)
-Best Indiana Film

Award Certificates will be given for the following categories:
-Best Comedy (4/26/20220
-Best Sound Design
-Best 1st Time Filmmaker
-Best Story
-Best Costuming
-Best Production Design
-Best Ensemble Cast
-Best Student Film
-Best Villain
-Best Hero
-Best Animated Film
-Best Fan Film (4/26/2022) not enough viable films
-Best Documentary (4/26/2022) not enough viable films
-Best Short Screenplay
-Best Feature Screenplay

Films can be nominated for multiple awards.


PopCon International Film Festival is excited to consider your short film of 40 minutes or less or your feature film over 40 minutes in length within the categories of, but not limited to; Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Action/Adventure, Horror, Anime/Animation, Fan Films, Supernatural, Thriller, Internet Culture & Gaming/Sports.

Films must be submitted through FilmFreeway. If selected, acceptable screening formats are as follows: Blu-Ray, DVD or DCP. Digital is highly preferred. Please upload trailers as well.

We accept films produced after May 2019.

In the interest of fair competition to all that submit their films/scripts, PopCon does NOT offer free submission waivers.

Please submit the version you want judged. We do not allow alternate versions to be submitted without being subject to another entrance fee.

By submitting your film to the PopCon International Film Festival you acknowledge and authorize the use of materials for promotional use which includes but is not limited to excerpts and images. You also agree to hold the PopCon International Film Festival harmless from any and all claims, liabilities, losses, expenses and damages as a result of entry.

Premieres will be considered in final programming decisions.

All films not in English must have English subtitles.

Films can be nominated for multiple awards. PopCon reserves the right to eliminate a category if there are enough viable nominations

Notifications will be made on or prior to April 4, 2022 via email or phone.

PopCon reserves the rights to disqualify any submission without refund and PopCon does not allow any refunds once a film has been submitted.

Films that have been acquired, produced, financed or distributed by any major motion picture studio(s) or production company(s), at the time of screening, will be screened out of competition. It is the sole responsibility of the submitting entity to attain all permissions required from the studio(s) or production company(s) prior to submission and screening.

By submitting, artists agree to all terms set forth in the rules.

Entering your film is considered giving the PopCon International Film Festival permission to screen your film during the course of the event (physical and/or virtual)

PopCon International Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition prior and during PopCon for promotional purposes.

The submitter shall indemnify and hold harmless PopCon and PopCon International Film Festival from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.

Please include the following items when submitting your film:
1) Poster
2) Stills/Set pictures
3) Trailer- not required but highly recommended even for shorts (limit trailers to 90s)
4) Complete the Filmmaker Biography section in FilmFreeway

Overall Rating
  • Christopher Vecchio

    One of the BEST film festivals I’ve been to in 2021 hands down! Audery & George Lane are amazing, great communication, hospitality and will bend over backwards for filmmakers. They made be feel like a VIP by assigning me my own liaison, the lovely Sophia Maria!!! Will definitely enter my next short in POP CON 2022!

    October 2021
    Response from festival:

    Hi CJ,

    Thank you for the review- we appreciate it. We hope that every filmmaker will feel get the chance to feel this way. Stoked for your next project!

  • Yuichi Kondo

    PopCon International Film Festival is incredible!
    It's a shame I couldn't make it to the venue from Japan due to COVID-19, but I really enjoyed the Film Festival by their excellent communication!
    I'm so honored to be part of PopCon. Thank you, great festival team!

    September 2021
    Response from festival:

    Hello Yuichi,

    Thank you for the review. We were so sad you could not make it over. You sent in a lovely intro video to attendees. We look forward to seeing your next creation.

    Audery, George

  • What an incredible time the PopCon International Festival was. The venue selection was on point, the audio and video quality of the screenings were superb, and everyone was so hospitable and welcoming. Popcon cares about filmmakers and their work and it really shows. We are so happy to have been a part of this festival and we will definitely submit again in the future. Thank you Popcon for a great experience and including our film Bliss Burger!

    September 2021
    Response from festival:

    Hi Tonya,

    Thank you kindly for your kind review. We are glad you all enjoyed your experience with PopCon and it was a pleasure to meet this group of fine people. We can't wait for you all to submit again!

  • An amazing event that hosted the film in a spectacular way.

    I very much look forward to the next opportunity to participate in this amazing event.

    August 2021
    Response from festival:

    Hi Pedro,

    Thank you so much for dropping us a review. We welcome your next submission and def are excited to see it.

    I will be in touch regarding your award- congrats again for Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy!!!

  • What fun! A very great festival! Nice people, nice contact! I would have loved to be there in person. PopCon is great!

    August 2021
    Response from festival:

    Hi Thorsten, thank you for the kind words. We would have loved to meet you in person but glad you participated virtually. We look forward to seeing more from you!