Being a new PROSPECTive filmmaker is tough, especially during a pandemic! But we know that great films take more than big budgets and A-list celebrities; they need SPARKLE!

We're movie people. We love the sense of community created through the shared moviegoing experience. That's why we made The Prospector International Film Festival (PIFF)! Independent filmmakers face many challenges in storyboarding, filming, editing, and producing their films. Why should screening them be another challenge?! The Prospector International Film Festival will bring the sparkle of independent films to the silver screen, spotlighting the best that independent cinema has to offer.

The Prospector International Film Festival will be in-person and virtual. All in-person screenings will be open captioned to engage a wider audience and will be hosted at the Prospector Theater - a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to providing competitive and integrated employment to people with disabilities through the operation of a first-run movie theater in Ridgefield, CT. Just an hour train ride from New York City, the Prospector Theater is a premium, four-screen movie theater equipped with state-of-the-art moviegoing technologies. Our model is a solution to the unemployment epidemic facing Americans with disabilities - 82% of whom lack meaningful employment. Your submission fees will help to support our mission as we curate an inclusive and accessible forum for independent filmmakers to showcase their hard work.

We vow to screen every film submitted to us. Communication with submitting filmmakers will be prompt and efficient. There will be no pre-programmed films in our festival. Social media presence, cast list, and budget will have no bearing on film selection. Our selections will be based solely on the content of your submission. We have hosted over 20 film festivals since opening the Prospector in November of 2014, and we are eager to bring your film to the big screen!

Every selection will receive a Prospector International Film Festival Laurel. Festival winners will receive a personalized Prospector swag bag filled with Prospector Theater goodies and additional laurels.

Each film category will award two prizes - one for best feature and one for best short film. Award categories will include...

- Best Drama
- Best Action
- Best Comedy
- Best Horror
- Best Sci-Fi
- Best Thriller
- Best Documentary
- Best Music Video

Open to all filmmakers creatively representing the film community. Entrance fees are non-refundable.

As a condition of entering the Prospector International Film Festival (PIFF), you hereby certify that:

1. All films must submit an open caption version of their film.

2. All accepted films must submit a DCP to the PIFF team by July 29th. DCPs can either be downloadable or a physical DCP on a drive. If you can not or do not have a DCP, we can DCP your film for exhibition for a highly discounted rate. Email us for more information.

3. We accept films both new and old. There are no constraints on when films are made.

4. You grant us the right to publish your trailer and film poster on our website and social media (including, but not limited to, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter).

5. By sending your film you confirm that there are no copyright infringements on your behalf, and we take no responsibility in this matter. You are also the sole creators of the film, short, new media, music which you have submitted to the PIFF. You warrant as sole and exclusive owner(s) of all legal right and title thereto have absolute authority to submit the enclosed material to PIFF. You warrant as sole and exclusive owner(s) of all legal right and title thereto have absolute authority to submit the enclosed material to PIFF.

6. We accept online screeners.

7. By submitting you agree to our terms and conditions. You hereby grant the PIFF the non-exclusive right to use my name, photograph, and likeness in connection with any and all publicity and promotional activities regarding the PIFF.

8. I have read, understood, and complied with all eligibility requirements of the categories for which I would like this film to be considered and to the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in this document are true.

9. This film is not subject to litigation nor is threatened by any litigation.

10. I am duly authorized to submit this film to the Festival and its Competition and understand that the Festival holds the right to screen my film for Festival screening and promotional purposes and to extract clips from this film for promotional purposes. I understand this may include online streaming of clips on Festival or Festival sponsor sites.

11. I understand that the Prospector International Film Festival is not responsible for any type of damage to or loss of the print during screenings, at any other time during the course of the Festival, while the film is in the Festival’s possession or while en route to or from the Festival, and I release the Prospector International Film Festival from any and all liabilities regarding damage to or loss of the print while en route to/from the Festival or while it is in their possession. You also understand that the PIFF will not return and is not obligated to return my film or any other materials I/we have submitted to the PIFF.

12. Films must be the original work of the applicants. If a film is based upon another person’s life or upon a book or other underlying work, applicant(s) must secure any necessary rights to make such adaptations. However, it is not necessary to submit the adaptation rights agreements to the Festival. Neither the Festival nor its jurists investigates or attests to the authenticity of an applicant’s statement of authorship or rights secured. By entering the competition, you represent that you have secured all necessary rights.

13. Applicants are solely responsible for obtaining all necessary rights and permissions for third-party materials included in their films, including but not limited to music, trademarks, logos, copyrights, and other intellectual property rights. PIFF expressly disclaims all liability or responsibility for any violations of the foregoing.

14. In the event the designated party is unable to attend the screening or awards ceremony, I understand that the director and/or producer of the film as listed in the credits of the film shall accept any and all awards in their stead.

15. If selected as a participant in the Festival, television ready media clips of the film must be provided by the date provided on notice of selection if requested. You shall be solely responsible for taking all necessary steps to establish and protect my/our copyright in the submitted material, and the PIFF shall have no obligation with respect thereto. The PIFF shall have the right to reproduce all or part of said material for use in its publicity and any and all related communication directly associated with PIFF.

16. If selected as a participant, I will deliver the film in the format requested by the deadline, set at the time of acceptance.

17. A film will not be considered in multiple categories. The entrant must select the appropriate category at the time of submission.

18. Short films must be under 60 minutes. Feature Films must be over 60 minutes. Music Videos must be under 8 minutes.

19. You will indemnify and hold harmless PIFF Prospects, Opportunity and Enrichment, Inc., its’ officers, directors, employees and assigns, its judges, sponsors, and partners, individually and collectively, from and against all claims, demands, losses, damages, costs, liabilities and expenses including legal expenses arising out of or in connection with any and all claims, or third party claims based on material submitted to PIFF.

20. You have read all of the festival rules, regulations and releases, understand them, and have complied with them. I/we understand that the festival rules, regulations, and releases may change or be updated and that it is my responsibility to read, understand and comply with any changes or updates

21. Entrance Fees are non-refundable.

Overall Rating
  • Nate Barlow

    Great festival! Excellent communication and so cheerful with which to work. Even though I couldn't travel to it because of COVID, so glad they were able to make a hybrid in-person/online festival

    March 2021
  • Although selected, we lost. So this review is probably the most honest you’re going to read. These people are fantastic. They have given their hearts in their lives over to film and at the same time in powering people who our twice exceptional. Meaning people with a physical or developmental challenge. They are empowering both Filmmakers and Films lovers. We should all support this first of all just because what they’re doing is heroic and wonderful. Not to mention they are also preserving a historical theater in Connecticut.

    March 2021
  • Lovely festival, great communication and a fantastic ethos behind what they do. We were thrilled that The Haunted Hotel was a part of PIFF 2021, and even more so when honoured with the Best Horror Feature Prize. The only regret was that we couldn't attend in person. Fingers crossed for next year, and very best wishes!

    February 2021
  • Extraordinary festival, very good communication. Its work with people with disabilities is to stand out. Very happy that Holestepper has been part of the official selection. A highly recommended festival to submit films.

    February 2021
  • Aamira Martinez

    This was a great festival! Their mission to provide meaningful work to those with disabilities is inspiring. The staff was friendly and very helpful. I will definitely submit in the future.

    February 2021