The Sedona International Film Festival celebrates current independent film from around the world. The festival strives to bring the best in narrative features, documentaries, short subjects, animation and foreign language films in all genres to its indie audience. It provides a rich educational opportunity to filmmakers, students and the general public alike through its on-site workshops, panel discussions and seminars.

The Festival's mission statement: "Bringing people together to broaden the understanding of the human condition and celebrate the power of independent film through cinema and the Sedona experience. To educate and inspire filmmakers and audience members to make a difference around the world through film."

The 26th Annual festival features nine days of independent films: February 22-March 1, 2020.

Now celebrating its 26th season, the Sedona International Film Festival prides itself on bringing the best in independent film to its ever-growing audience of indie film lovers. From features to documentaries, short subjects to animation, and an impressive lineup of foreign films, the Festival screens more than 170 films at the state-of-the-art Harkins Sedona Cinemas, the Mary D. Fisher Theatre (the festival's own art house theater venue) and the Sedona Performing Arts Center, located in beautiful Sedona, Arizona .

In addition to all of our incredible independent film programming in all genres, the festival also features a "Family" film series, a "Green/Sustainable" series and other exciting themed series tracks each year. Additionally, the festival features a "Docs That Make a Difference" series and World Cinema Showcase. The festival has also introduced a new initiative: "Art into Activism — Turning Movies into Motivation" that inspires and encourages audience members to "act" on topics they've seen in our films when they leave our theaters.

The Festival features a gala with an annual celebrity tribute, filmmaker dinners/events each night and an awards ceremony.

Past festival honorees have included: Susan Sarandon, Richard Dreyfuss, Jane Alexander, James Brolin, Cybil Shepherd, Elliott Gould, Michael Moore, John Waters, Peter Bogdanovich, Nicholas Cage, Gary Sinise, Jonathan Winters, Paul Sorvino, Lea Thompson, Phil Rosenthal, Rip Torn, Rita Rudner, Tim Daly, Richard Schiff, Jamey Sheridan, James Karen, David Rasche, Jane Seymour, James Keach, Doris Roberts, Giancarlo Esposito, Nick Nolte, Joe Pantoliano, Mary Stuart Masterson, Diane Ladd, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, along with classic movie icon Robert Osborne from Turner Classic Movies. Additional tributees have included Ned Beatty, Alan Cumming, Lainie Kazan, Peter Masterson, Carlin Glynn, Elizabeth Banks, Ed Asner, Rick Schroder, Elmer Bernstein, Ted Danson, Ann Miller, Donald O'Connor, Mary Steenburgen and Sean Young.

While every festival has its celebrity honorees, the Sedona International Film Festival prides itself on honoring the FILMMAKER first and foremost. The FILMMAKERS are the true celebrities and are given the most attention, focus and accolades at the Sedona festival. This includes Q&A discussions after every screening, complimentary hotel accommodations at one of Sedona's incredible hotels, complimentary meals in the Filmmaker/VIP lounge every day of the festival plus top "All-Access" passes to all festival activities and films. The filmmakers are our "STARS" and we treat them as such!

The Sedona International Film festival boasts a stellar lineup of some of the best independent films from around the world in all genres. The recent 2017 festival featured 173 films with 18 countries represented. Previous festival lineups have included Oscar Winners/Nominees "Amore", "Monsieur Lazhar", "In Darkness", "If a Tree Falls", "Inside Job" , "Biutiful", "Exit Through the Gift Shop", "Winter's Bone", "Wasteland", "The Cove" and "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire", "An Education" "Burma VJ" and "Food, Inc." In the past, the festival has been the launch pad of films such as: "What the 'BLEEP' Do We Know", "Canvas", "The Cake Eaters", "Away From Her" and many, many more that went on to critical and audience success.

But don't just take our word for it ... here's just a sampling of what some filmmakers had to say about the Sedona International Film Festival:

"Twenty-nine film festivals later, there is really only ONE worth going to ... SEDONA"

"What an unbelievable, wonderful, inspired and inspiring event you ALL just put on."

"Flawless! The atmosphere breathtaking and the films were magnificent."

"I have been to a good few film fests and yours was the nicest experience that I have had. I think all the filmmakers I spoke with share this sentiment."

"I have to tell you, of all the film festivals I've been involved in, yours stands head and shoulders above them all! Somehow, you were able to make our visit a class act and, at the same time, keep your film festival a film festival."

The Sedona International Film Festival awards Audience Choice Festival Favorite honors to Best Feature, Best Documentary, Best Short, Best International Film and Best Animation. In addition, Director's Choice Awards are given in each category, as well as other categories to be determined each year.

Awards are presented to filmmakers at the awards ceremony at the end of the festival.

We understand how fees can add up for film makers. We also understand that a not-for-profit film festival needs to stay in business. As a courtesy, Fee Waivers will be granted to filmmakers IF you have had one of your films selected for the Sedona Film Festival in the past. Otherwise, WE DO NOT GRANT FEE WAIVERS. Please refrain from requesting one.

For entries paying the Student Fee, a copy of a current student ID MUST be included with the submission.

Participation in the Sedona International Film Festival implies understanding and acceptance of festival regulations.

Overall Rating
  • Sabine Purviance

    Thank you Sedona International Film Festival for showing our work!!! We had an overall amazing experience and are looking forward coming back in the future :-)

    May 2019
  • James Fazio

    Having our world premiere of Time Well Spent Documentary at the Sedona International Film Festival was such an honor and a pleasure. The festival team really cares for you, really loves films and they really make you feel special. Sedona is such a beautiful place we had a hard time staying indoors! Next film I will be submitting again for my world premiere, as it was that special! Thank you Sedona for the amazing time and opportunity. Other Filmmakers, make it a point to get to this Festival.

    March 2018
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you James for your kind words. We look forward to hosting you and another one of your films in the future

  • Bryan Reinhart

    The Sedona International Film Festival treats the filmmakers as the celebrities.

    October 2017
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Bryan. And your Film was well received by sold-out audiences at the Sedona Film Festival. Congratulations.

  • Fredric Lehne

    Definitely one to shoot for. Extraordinarily gracious hospitality, and a deservedly well-respected festival. You always wanted to visit Sedona, anyway, right? There could be no better reason.

    September 2017
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Fredric for your kind words. Sedona is amazing own it's own. Thanks to fabulous filmmakers we are able to put on a a great Film Festival.

  • Shawn Tolleson

    Simply amazing film festival. Patrick and his team work very hard and take great care of their filmmakers. They feed you lunch and dinner everyday and have amazing parties every night. Plus they house you! The crowds really turn out for your screenings, even at 9am! We had a full house! I can't recommend this festival enough!

    July 2017
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Shawn for your kind comments. WE are happy to hear your experience was AWESOME and we do have the BEST audiences. We look forward to your next film.