Reeling: The Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival is the second longest-running film festival of its kind, and prides itself on showcasing the best LGBTQ+ films each year.

From award-winning international feature films to social documentaries to experimental shorts, Reeling has always presented a range of genres that demonstrate the rich diversity of work being produced. Not only has Reeling become one of the most important cultural events for Chicagoans, it also attracts audiences from throughout the Midwest who consider the festival to be the highlight of their cinematic year.

The first Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival took place in April 1981 in Chicago Filmmakers’ 90-seat folding-chair screening room on West Hubbard Street. The festival sold out nearly every screening, leaving audiences demanding more. The enthusiasm for the festival led to a commitment on the part of Chicago Filmmakers to continue the festival as an annual event, and it has been going strong ever since.

The mission of Reeling is to recognize the important artistic contributions that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender filmmakers have made to our culture; to educate the general population and sensitize them to lesbian, gay and transgender issues; to investigate the history of LGBTQ+ film, including the stereotyping that has been a major part of this history; and to counteract this stereotyping with valid, meaningful and diverse LGBTQ+ stories.

The festival provides a unique opportunity for the celebration of these identities for a community too often misrepresented or ignored in mainstream film and television.

Entries are eligible for (non-cash) audience awards in the categories of Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Episodic Series, Best Narrative Short, Best Documentary Short, and Best Experimental or Animated Film; and (non-cash) juried awards in the categories of Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Episodic Series, Best Narrative Short, Best Documentary Short, and Best Experimental or Animated Film. Additional cash prizes may be awarded on behalf of Reeling sponsors.

MISSION & OBJECTIVE
Reeling: The Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival is the second longest-running film festival of its kind in the U.S. and prides itself on showcasing the best lesbian and gay films and web series from around the world. From international feature films to social issue documentaries to experimental shorts, Reeling has always presented a range of genres that demonstrates the rich diversity of work being produced.

ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
Reeling 2020: The 38th Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival will screen approximately 75-100 independent films and videos over 11 days, from September 24 - October 4, 2020.

We invite you to enter this year's festival and ask you to please take a moment to read through our Festival Regulations and Entry Procedures before you enter your work.

For information on last year's festival, visit us at www.reelingfilmfestival.org/2019.

For more information or questions, call 773-293-1447 or email
reeling@chicagofilmmakers.org. We look forward to viewing your work!

Send to: Chicago Filmmakers
Attn: Reeling Film Festival
5720 N. Ridge Ave.
Chicago, IL 60660.

ORGANIZER
Brenda Webb (Executive Director)

GENERAL RULES:

SCREENING FEES
By entering Reeling, the entrant acknowledges that Reeling is not obligated nor expected to pay rental fees or screening fees for the exhibition of entered works.

FESTIVAL AWARDS
Official entries will be eligible for Jury Awards voted on by juries of film professionals and Audience Awards chosen by audience vote.

SCREENERS
Submissions must be submitted via a secure online screener (e.g. Vimeo.com with password) or uploaded to FilmFreeway for preview. Entrants must also supply a password-protected screener link for press review purposes immediately upon notification of acceptance into Reeling.

NOTIFICATIONS
Entrants will be marked as “In Consideration” on FilmFreeway once the payment, entry form, and preview link have all been received. If your entry is accepted for exhibition, you will be notified via email by August 14.

PHOTOS
Still photos from your work are required with your submission and for all films selected for the festival. Preferred format is TIF or low compressed JPEG. Preferred minimum size of 1800 pixels x 1200 pixels in horizontal. Color images should be provided in both RGB and CMYK but if only one version is available, CMYK is preferred.

WORKS-IN-PROGRESS
Rough cuts and works-in-progress are eligible for submission only if a completed final copy is available for preview by June 4, 2020. A brief explanation describing changes to be made for the final version and expected date of completion must be included with your entry.

PREMIERE STATUS
We generally do not program works that have screened in Chicago, have been shown on television, or are available on DVD or online prior to the festival. Exceptions are determined on a case-by-case basis. It is your responsibility to disclose this information on your entry form and to notify us immediately of any changes after your submission is made.

EXHIBITION COPIES
***Deadline for Receipt of Exhibition Copy: September 4, 2020***
If your feature film entry is accepted for exhibition, your DCP and backup Blu-ray should arrive in our office by September 4, 2020 for inspection and testing. If your short film entry is accepted for exhibition, your digital file should be sent via an online file transfer system by September 4, 2020. Please inform our office if this will be a problem.

***Shipping***
Exhibition copies must be sent to the festival prepaid. The festival cannot accept nor assume responsibility for damage or loss of materials while in transit. For DCPs, please do not use fiber-filled shipping envelopes.

***International Shipping***
Foreign entries must be shipped prepaid. Exhibition copies must be sent directly to the festival office with all transportation charges, delivery fees, and any duties or taxes prepaid by the shipper. The entrant will have to bear financial responsibility in the event that the festival is charged any brokerage fees. Please be sure to include all proper customs documentation. We recommend that the following declaration be printed on the outside of the package and on customs forms: TEMPORARY IMPORTATION – FOR FILM FESTIVAL EXHIBITION ONLY. NO COMMERCIAL VALUE.

***Return Shipping***
Feature exhibition copies will be returned to the entrant at the festival’s expense, using a method and carrier of the festival's choosing. Express shipping or shipping to any other destination that incurs higher shipping charges (such as transshipments to foreign film festivals on behalf of the filmmaker) must be borne by the entrant or the recipient. Trans-shipments of exhibition copies to other festivals must be requested in writing, and is subject to approval.

***Change of Address***
It is the responsibility of the entrant to notify Reeling of a change of address by emailing reeling@chicagofilmmakers.org. The entrant must accept responsibility for the cost of reshipping exhibition copies returned to the festival due to a change of address, unless written notification was given to the festival prior to return shipping.

LOSS OR DAMAGE
The festival cannot accept nor assume responsibility for damage or loss of materials while in transit. In the event of loss or damage during the festival, the festival’s responsibility is limited to repair or replacement of the print.

MEDIA PROMOTION
Programmed works may be excerpted for TV, website, and other promotional purposes. Photos and trailers or clips supplied by makers may be used for promotional purposes. Reeling must be notified in writing at the time of submission of any press restrictions.

AUTHORIZATION
Entering your film or web series automatically indicates your acceptance of all Reeling 2020 submission guidelines and regulations. By entering the festival, the entrant automatically authorizes Reeling to publicly screen the work in the festival and agrees to provide an exhibition copy for the period of the festival (September 24 to October 4, 2020) AT NO CHARGE. If the film is picked up for distribution after the film has been entered, it is still the responsibility of the entrant to provide an exhibition copy to the festival without charge. Once a film/tape is submitted for entry, it may not be withdrawn. The entrant assumes all financial responsibility and legal liability for the content of their work including, but not limited to, usage of all copyrighted material for story, voice, visual images, and music.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • April Kelley

    Absolutely adore this festival and only wish I could have made it over there to be there in person. From the get-go the communication was fantastic, professional and seamless. Will look forward to submitting more work to them in the future.

    October 2019
  • Ed Hancox

    I didn't make it this year, but all of the communication from the festival was great and very efficient. Thanks for programming the film!

    October 2019
  • Rochely C. Droves

    What an amazing festival ! Very diverse selection of movies and gives opportunity to brand new filmmakers to show their works!

    October 2019
  • Rachel Relman

    I had an amazing time! Would 100% submit my work again. Thank you for everything!

    October 2019
  • Jeremy Leroux

    This festival was excellent and I was so glad we could attend it for our SOLD OUT world premiere. Chicago is great city with plenty to see and do and this festival was well organized and attended. Their team was on top of everything from Website to, social media posting to the days of the event. They cared about making sure filmmakers had audiences and great Q&A's. Also really appreciated the filmmaker brunch to be able to connect one on one with other filmmakers in a laid back setting. Highly recommend this festival.

    October 2019