It gives us great pleasure to introduce you to Sacramento's Premier Cinema Experience, The Sacramento International Film Festival, being held August 18-20 and December 14-17 2023.

For 28 years filmmakers have enjoyed the Sacramento Film Festival (SFF) for its exceptional hospitality and its commitment to visionary artists.

2022 was a very difficult year due to COVID though we persevered in a mostly ONLINE/HYBRID capacity. Many festivals didn't make it. SFF however, BACK with a FULL LIVE event + Hybrid/Digital offerings, making our festival stronger than ever!

Previous guests include Colin Hanks (Fargo), DB Sweeney (The Cutting Edge), Dr. Lew Hunter (UCLA Screenwriting), Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs), Dominique Swain (Lolita), John Daly (Platoon, The Last Emperor), and Timothy Bottoms (The Last Picture Show) to name a few!

SFF regularly showcases Academy Award-winning films like "STRANGERS NO MORE" (Best Foreign Short) and "SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE" (Best Picture) as well as award-winning LOCAL films and films from around the globe! By accepting only films which have not previously screened in the region and working with Hollywood and independents alike, SFF grows the art and craft of filmmaking here in California's capital city,

Enthusiastic audiences, beautiful venues, and innovative ONLINE PREMIERES offer filmmakers a first-class showcase for serious cinema. In addition, SFF hosts two full-day film conferences as part of our event: The "DIGITAL ODYSSEY" technology expo and the "AMERICAN SCREENWRITER'S CONFERENCE". Add screenings like our "CINE-SOUL" and "CINE LATINO" showcases and you will find a complete cultural experience unlike any other!

SFF organizers are proud to offer this extraordinary "Festival of Cinema" to highlight Northern California as an arts and culture destination and celebrate amazing artists like you.

The following guidelines govern submissions for the Sacramento International Film Festival. For more information, call 916-524-5138. Please read these guidelines carefully and follow all directions for submission.

General guidelines for all films: READ CAREFULLY

NOTE: Only films that have NOT previously played in Sacramento via TV, Cinema or the internet will be accepted for general entry. Films with ANY form of distribution in the Sacramento region prior to the fest are disqualified. This INCLUDES Cast and Crew screenings. The Festival does reserve the right to periodically make exceptions for "RETROSPECTIVE" screenings. That said, any form of distribution in Sacramento prior to the fest are generally considered disqualified.

1) Types and Categories of Entry:
There are three main "Types" of entry for this festival, short-form (under 20 minutes total running time), long-form (20 minutes to an hour total running time), and features, (over one hour total running time), plus special Showcases. The categories are listed below. If you are from Northern California or your film was shot here, it is ALWAYS preferable to submit under the "Nor Call All-Stars" category, regardless of running time as we give much deference to locals.

Please make certain that you have specified which genre(s) your film falls under. A genre helps our judges to identify the film's content. All styles of film will be accepted for review.

2) Eligibility Requirements:
Only films that have NOT previously played in the Sacramento region are eligible for entry. This includes private screenings, physical media, TV or online distribution of any kind. Employees, volunteers, interns and board members are prohibited from entering. By acceptance of these rules and submission to our festival, the entrant certifies that he/she has sole legal authority to enter into this agreement.

3) Format Requirements:
Please submit a preview copy of your film via the FilmFreeway or another listed online submission engine. Sound must be 2 channel mono or stereo, 48 hz 16 bit. If accepted, you will be contacted to provide a final screening copy. All final exhibition prints must be submitted on one of the following formats: HD online copy (password-protected Vimeo or Google Docs), 1080p. No other formats will be accepted for screening prints.

4) Disclaimer:
The festival holds no responsibility for lost media or promotional items.

5) Awards: Awards and acknowledgments for best International film, best short, best local short, and the "Visionary spirit" best overall film will be awarded at the festival.

6) By submitting your film you agree that you have the sole legal authority to enter into this agreement. Further, you authorize the Sacramento International Film Festival, The California Film Foundation, and/or their designees to exhibit your film's content (in part or whole), without restriction via Theatrical, Digital Media, TV, Radio and/or other means.

Overall Rating
  • The Team over at the festival are really great, but I think logistics this year weren't in their favor. We ended up being notified the venue was switching to virtual the week of the event and were sad out mostly local cast and crew didn't get to see their film in a local venue. Likewise, I think networking suffered accordingly but it sounded like they were doing everything they could and I appreciate them trying to help the local film scene. UPDATE: We were able to attend the following spring at live event dubbed Sac Gems. Was really great to get to see the film on the big screen and get to network with local individuals. Looking forward to the next round of the festival and plan to attend.

    December 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thanks guys. To say the LEAST, logistics weren't in our favor. We suffered a MAJOR LOSS due to COVID. But we DID indicate a month prior that the venue in your case was going to be virtual. It wasn't until Johnny actually reached you BY PHONE the week prior that we got confirmation, however. This is a COMMON problem with filmmakers where for whatever reason, the email is unresponsive and sometimes even phone outreach. Often it is a different submitter than the director/producer. Often contact info changes. Whatever the case, it WAS exacerbated by our horrible loss closer to the event and for THAT we do appreciate your patience! Johnny WAS also instructed to inform you that you'd get a LIVERESCREENING in the spring so we look forward to seeing you then!

  • Joe Petrucelli

    Covid Made it Very Difficult to network. Get Film Festival

    January 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thanks Joe! Much appreciated. and you're right! COVID did make it harder to Network. Thanks again for attending. Hope to see you this year!

  • I'm truly honored to have my drama/fantasy feature "The Seedling" selected for Drama and my comedy/horror feature "The Moron" selected for Comedy! Thank you so much!

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Kevin. The honor is ours!!

  • Amy Wu

    Hi! I was very happy that my film From Farms to Incubators was chosen to screen at the Sacramento International Film Festival.

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Amy! We value you and appreciate the feedback!

  • Cool festival, positive experience, thank you!!

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Jonathan. This year has been tough with COVID but, it's creators like YOU that make it worth it! Thank you!