Spooky Empire's Horror Film Festival returns to the Hyatt Regency Orlando this October 27-29, 2023!

Spooky Empire brings you the goriest, spookiest, and most frightening short and feature-length horror films for your viewing pleasure. With 20,000+ guests attending annually, this film festival is the premier destination to immerse yourself in horror culture. With massive amounts of genre fans, celebrity guests and other special attendees, get your film noticed by all the right people!

There's something at Spooky Empire for every kind of horror filmmaker! Looking for informative panels with insight into the industry? Check! Looking for a roundtable discussion with other independent filmmakers? We've got you covered! Looking for a Meet & Greet networking hour? We've got it, and we'll ensure those important connections are made in the most comfortable, non-awkward environment possible! All capped off with Sunday's RIP Best of the Fest block of the Screening Committee's favorite films and the awards ceremony. Will YOU be Fearmaker of the Year?

To keep up to date with information about the festival, follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/spookyfilmfest and YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/c/AndYouFilms.

Fearmaker of the Year
Best Short Film
Best Cinematography
Best Makeup
Best Special Effects
Best Actor
Best ScareActor
Best Student Film
Audience Choice
Florida Fear

In addition to our premiere awards, Spooky Empire Film Festival also gives out a handful of superlative awards. The specific categories of superlatives change each year, so stay tuned for this year's announcement!

GENRE ELIGIBILITY:
Spooky Empire seeks independent short and feature-length films from around the world in any of the following genre groups:
- Horror, Supernatural
- Horror Comedy
- Sci-Fi
- Animation
- Thriller, Suspense
- Cult, Bizarre, Genre-defying, Experimental
- Documentaries with a genre-related or cult/bizarre subject matter

MICRO-SHORT FILM ELIGIBILITY:
- Completed after January 1st, 2020
- Works-in-progress and rough cuts are not accepted
- Run time of less than 2 minutes
- Not previously submitted to the festival
Films in a language other than English must be subtitled in English

SHORT FILM ELIGIBILITY:
- Completed after January 1st, 2020
- Works-in-progress and rough cuts are not accepted
- Run time of less than 30 minutes
- Not previously submitted to the festival
Films in a language other than English must be subtitled in English

FEATURE FILM ELIGIBILITY:
- Completed after January 1st, 2020
- Works-in-progress and rough cuts are not accepted
- Run time of 30 minutes or longer
- Not previously submitted to the festival
Films in a language other than English must be subtitled in English
*NOTE: Starting February 1st, 2023, feature films will no longer be in competition at Spooky Empire Horror Film Festival. Rather, 1 or 2 features will be selected as special screenings geared toward promotion of the film(s). The Festival Committee will program the weekend around selected features and work closely with the filmmakers to market and support attendance of their film(s). So much hard work and effort is put into producing a feature, and we want to assist in making these screenings as successful as possible!

2023 SUBMISSION DEADLINES & MECHANISM:
Spooky Empire ONLY accepts online film screeners. Also, any applicable submission fees must also be paid online at time of your entry.
Our Standard Festival Participation Agreement (Terms and Conditions), which all submitted films are also expected to uphold, is as follows:

GENERAL AGREEMENT OF PARTICIPATION IN SPOOKY EMPIRE INTERNATIONAL HORROR FILM FESTIVAL:
I have read and accept the terms and regulations of Spooky Empire Film Festival. I will provide the festival with any additional information required pursuant to these rules and regulations. I authorize Spooky Empire Film Festival to exhibit my film, and if selected, I confirm that an exhibition copy will be available in a required format for screening during the 2023 festival (October 27-29, 2023). I certify that I hold all necessary rights for the submission of this film/video to the Spooky Empire Film Festival and that all rights and clearances have been made. This film is not subject to any litigation nor is threatened by any litigation. I hold Spooky Empire Film Festival harmless from damage to, or loss of any or all materials en route to, from or otherwise at the festival. I assume all legal responsibilities therein. By agreeing to these terms, I transfer to Spooky Empire Film Festival the right to use excerpts, stills, and trailers of the submitted film, for the purposes of publicity and marketing of the film at the 2023 festival, and for other non-commercial uses related to the promotion of the 2023 festival. I hereby agree to indemnify Spooky Empire Film Festival, in the event that such rights have not been properly transferred.

PLEASE E-MAIL US QUESTIONS, ANYTIME: spookyempirefilmfest@gmail.com

WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR SUBMISSION!

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Amazing experience! If you attend, you MUST join the opening Zombie walk and get transformed from the living to the "undead". The enthusiasm and professionalism by Alea and the team at AndYouFilms is of value and quality. We look forward to returning with our horror feature in the near future!

    December 2022
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    Response from festival:

    It was great meeting you at the festival! We're glad you had a great time. Looking forward to seeing your next project!

  • The Creeping Film

    A wonderful festival. We were proud to have THE CREEPING screen at Spooky Empire.

    Unfortunately we couldn't attend the festival itself but the communication was excellent and we were honoured to be part of the lineup.

    November 2022
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    Response from festival:

    It was a pleasure sharing "THE CREEPING" with our audience! Thank you for the kind words!

  • Sara Lynn

    Spooky Empire's Horror Film Festival was such an amazing experience! Aléa, Brendan and the team did a fabulous job hosting the event and creating panels and Q&As beneficial for filmmakers. I met so many awesome people and I'm so honored that my film The Callback was screened here. It's a festival I'll never forget!

    November 2022
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    Response from festival:

    It was great seeing you at the festival! We're glad you had a great time. Thank you for the kind words!

  • Peter Anthony

    Great communication! Professional courtesy. They really helped make my film the success it was today. Highly Recommended.

    November 2022
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    Response from festival:

    It was a pleasure to share "Rose Blood" with our audience - they really enjoyed it! Thank you for the kind words!

  • Philippe SFEZ

    SURVIVAL nominee at The Most Vomit-Inducing !! It's such an honor to have been rewarded by a festival with such kindness and humor.
    Merci

    November 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you for the positive review! The Screening Committee had a great time with "SURVIVAL." The nomination was well-deserved! :)