The San Antonio Black International Film Festival (SABIFF) is celebrating its 6th year of empowering events! This year, the festival will be held both virtually and physically in the “Alamo City” for three days, from October 4 to October 6, 2024. This year, the San Antonio Black International Film Festival’s SABIFF 2024 is ‘changing the script’ from our regular Open Call Films-In-Competition Submissions for 2024 to reFOCUS * reCHARGE * reFRESH our organization (this year’s festival’s theme).

We are thrilled to have concluded SABIFF 2023 on a high note, celebrating our 5th year anniversary. As we enter our 6th year, our leadership team recognizes the importance of strengthening our roots from within and nurturing our soil to ensure that our festival continues to grow strong, healthy, and sustainable in the years to come. For 2024, SABIFF will scale the festival days, and timeframe for film submissions consideration which will entail decreased rates. Find out more below:

SABIFF 2024 festival dates will run for 3-days, both virtually and physically in the “Alamo City” from October 4 to October 6, 2024, with curated content themed around a range of vigorous cinema to uplift and nourish our minds, bodies, and spirits. This year, we will NOT conduct a “Films in Competition” awards. Although there will be no Films in Competition awards this year, SABIFF will select and curate a wide range of quality films to exhibit around the theme of “reFOCUS * reCHARGE * reFRESH” as well as recognize local Texas film Creatives and their works.

If you have a film of any genre that you would like to submit for consideration to add to this year’s nourishing program focus on any form of wellness, which can range from stories on any aspect of resolution, ranging from - mental, physical, financial, environmental, identity, history, futurism… -to- justice, to reciprocity, to redemption - Feel free to submit to our OPEN CALL.

Our OPEN CALL submissions timeframe will only run for 4-months, from February 1, 2024, to May 5, 2024. In consideration of our 6th year alterations, all Early Bird specials and regular deadline submissions all the way to late entries are reduced.

SABIFF accepts all original, quality video/film narratives, documentaries, animation, and music videos from around the world, with diverse perspectives on the Black experience. Films must be created by, for, and/or about Black perspectives, with Black Creatives in leading production roles.

The San Antonio Black International Film Festival (SABIFF) is dedicated to showcasing quality films, advocating for, and supporting filmmakers of African descent. We aim to expose audiences to a myriad of subject matters, stories, voices, perspectives, and diverse images of Black people throughout the global African Diaspora who have been historically under-represented. SABIFF affirms that multitudes of quality Black films deserve to be presented to all audiences thirsting for alternative independent cinema in the Alamo City and virtually. We believe that the elevation of Black history, culture, lives, and diverse narratives is empowering to people and platforms, which in turn inspire positive and progressive social change. #BlackFilmsMatter

SABIFF provides a unique philanthropic service aimed at connecting universal humankind to misinterpreted and under-represented African-humanity on the silver screen. We promote cultural pluralism by amplifying films created by people who identify as, and represent data specific to Afrocentrism. We present unique film works and introduce creative perspectives to disparate and isolated audiences open to receiving a Black-world-view of cinema. We understand that the African proverb “it takes a village to raise a child” holds true in the independent film world for African-descent storytellers. It takes a village to create moving narratives and images reflective of one’s ethnic identity, history, and experiences that are consciously and unconsciously inherent in our physical and cultural DNA.

San Antonio is the 7th largest city in the United States and is widely known for its tourist attractions, including the Alamo, the five-time NBA champion SPURS basketball team, delicious Tex-Mex cuisine, the 750 ft. Hemisphere Tower, and its beautiful River Walk, which runs through the downtown area. SABIFF’s expansion of the arts, culture, and storytelling through Black films, pride, and economic development on the Eastside, adds to the city’s commitment to broaden equity, diversity, and inclusion.

We invite you to stay connected, follow us on social media, become involved, and consider being a thriving part of our SABIFF village.

SABIFF 2025 will come back in full swing; including our Opening Night, Ankh Achievement Award, Black Friday Student Field trips, Workshops & Films-In-Competition screenings, Soul Saturday's F-I-C exhibitions & Cinema Under the Stars Closing Night, and Filmmaker's Sunday Glory Awards Brunch. 2025 is set to be ALL THE WAY LIVE!

*Black Heritage Things to do in San Antonio

SABIFF 2024 WILL NOT present a FILMS IN COMPETITION this year. Open Call Submissions are only for curation purposes. Selections will be exhibited this year as part of our "reFOCUS - reFRESH - reCHARGE" theme in all categories.

*Best Narrative Feature Film *Best Narrative Short Film
*Best Documentary Feature Film *Best Documentary Short Film
*Best Student Film *Music Video (& Spokenword)
*Audience Choice Acknowledgement *Best Animation Film

SABIFF 2024 OPEN CALL Submissions are non-competitive this year. Works accepted will be considered for curated exhibitions only in the following categories:

• Documentary (features and shorts)
• Narrative (features and shorts)
• Animation
• Student films
• Music Videos

All submissions must have subjects/subject matters by, for and about people of the African Diaspora (Black people of African descent from around the world). Films must consist of a Black Creative in a key role(s) which include, but are not limited to the: director, producer, writer, primary actors, and essential crew positions.
All entries must be in English, or have English subtitles.

The entry fee of $$ are non-refundable. (decreased for 2024 submissions)

Completed films/videos must have been created after January 1, 2019. The film submitted can not be older than 5 years old. *For SABIFF 2024, if you have a compelling film that you'd like us to consider that is older than 5 years, email us the reason why, and a preview.

No Works-in-Progress films, or Film Scripts are accepted.

Format: Please submit the film that you would want exhibited if selected in an
MP4, 1080 x 1920 format (a link of the winning films are also required w/ the MP4 format)

No web-series are accepted at this time UNLESS it can be presented as a STAND-ALONG narrative or documentary. Otherwise, only single features, shorts, narratives, documentaries, animation films, and/or music videos are accepted.

At the time of OPEN CALL submissions, film/video works MUST NOT be available for monetary profits based on public viewing on distribution outlets such as: Networks, Public Television Broadcast, Movie Theaters, YouTube, Vimeo, etc) or on Video On Demand platforms (Amazon, Prime, I-Tunes, etc).

Based upon their Open Call submission, the filmmaker (producer or director) agrees to make available, and allow SABIFF permission to use any photographs, bios, video excerpts/trailers in the required format (MP4, quicktime file, link), and any other media associated with the film, for use in SABIFF 2024 trailers, website postings, social media outlets, publicity, and promotions at the discretion of the film festival needs.

It is the sole responsibility of the filmmaker to ensure that the film submitted and ALL material screened is owned, legally cleared, by the Filmmaker/Filmmaker's company. SABIFF is not responsible for any legal issues associated with the filmmakers film entry to SABIFF 2024's Open Call.


As the submitter of entry, I have read and have complied with all of the San Antonio Black International Film Festival rules. (See recommended format needs below)
I acknowledge that the submission is my/our original work and there are no disputes regarding the ownership of the submission as well as the footage in the said project.
I warrant the submitted material does not defame or invade the rights of any person living or dead, and I fully indemnify the Festival against any claim made for such violations of law. To the best of my/our knowledge, all of the statements herein are true and correct.

I understand that failure to adhere to the Festival rules will result in disqualification and forfeiture of entry fee.

The individual submitting the film hereby warrants that they are authorized to commit the film for SABIFF 2024's screening(s), and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations.

I agree to hold the San Antonio Black International Film Festival (SABIFF 2024) harmless from any and all claims, demands, losses, damages, judgments, liabilities, and expenses (including attorney’s fees) arising out of or in connection with any and all claims of third parties, 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.

FORMATS: Please note the necessary formats for accepted film submissions. We are capable to handle most kinds of mp4, mov, and m4v files, however, as advance notice for selected video/films, we recommend the following video settings for BEST live streaming results when streaming via our platform.

- Format: mp4
- Video codec: H.264 (AVC)
- Audio codec: AAC
- fps: 30 max (Higher fps may cause disruption of stream)
- Video duration: At least 1 minute
- Orientation: Landscape, Portrait, Square
- Audio bitrate: 128 kbps
- Video bitrates: 1500 kbps - 6000 kbps
- 360-degree Video bitrate: 5000 kbps - 10000 kbps

Overall Rating
  • Benji Lang

    A lovely and vibrant festival that is still small and intimate but will continue to grow. With the amazing folks who run the festival and the great films they select, I hope to return someday when I too have grown.

    November 2023
    Response from festival:

    Thanks so much Benji! We all must continue to grow and get better. We are looking forward to future works. All the best!

  • Sean Kithas

    The events SABIFF planned for the opening were high energy and made us feel welcomed. I enjoyed the hype of the red carpet event, awards show with Phylicia Rashad, the movie selections, workshops for the public and creatives, and the closing brunch. I also loved how they had events for the youth and involved them throughout the weekend. Only suggestion is to increase the amount of food for the opening and closing events and to have food options available during the movie screenings. Watching back to back movies without a place to eat close by was challenging since we ended up having to miss movies to go eat. Other than that, excellent festival and I will attend again!

    -Cynthia Freeman Gibbs, screenwriter & actor

    November 2023
    Response from festival:

    Cynthia, we are so glad to have connected with you at this year's festival, and look forward to future collaborations. Thank you for your comments to help us grow and get better.

  • Clayton Allis

    Ada Babino and the whole SABIFF team were fantastic! Communicative, organized and welcoming! Very honored to have screened IN THE WEEDS at this years festival

    October 2023
    Response from festival:

    TY! We enjoyed Weeds... it will go far!

  • Long life for SABIFF!!
    We’ll be back!

    October 2023
    Response from festival:

    Your film is a Gem that needs to be put in history books...especially w/ Texas bans. All the best!!

  • In just one weekend, SABIFF has become family. The film festival truly cares about not only promoting black voices and perspectives, but also specifically minority voices right here in TX. It is a festival that was definitely needed. This is also a film festival that cares about promoting and supporting the filmmakers, of which I felt personally from the very beginning. The networking opportunities are supreme, so I was able to meet a ton of new friends there. I can’t wait until next year! Even if I don’t have any film to submit, I will be there to support, attend or even volunteer. This festival is HIGHLY recommended!

    October 2023
    Response from festival:

    Thank Sis : ) We gotta get a Igwe perspective going at the rate that you're producing films. Appreciate ya!