The Whitaker St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase, an annual presentation of the nonprofit Cinema St. Louis, serves as the area’s primary venue for films made by local artists. The Showcase screens works that were written, directed, edited, or produced by St. Louis natives or films/filmmakers with strong local ties.

The programs range from full-length fiction features and documentaries to multi-film compilations of fiction and documentary shorts. Programs with feature-length films include post-screening Q&As with filmmakers.

The 2021 Showecase will take place from July 16-25. The event will be held virtually on the secure Eventive online platform. If in-person presentation is safe by mid-July, the programs will also be presented at Washington University's Brown Hall Auditorium on the Showcase's two weekends (July 16-18 and 23-25).

Deadlines remain important, but we want to be as flexible as possible to be respectful of filmmakers’ abilities to submit fully completed projects. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to CSL artistic director Chris Clark directly.

More than two dozen awards are given by the St. Louis Film Critics Association. Selected films will also receive invitations to the St. Louis International Film Festival.

Conditions for Eligibility:

This is a competitive, curated event, and submission does not guarantee an invitation.

All films must fulfill the following requirements:
1) Be written, directed, edited, or produced by St. Louis natives or those with strong local ties.
2) Be a St. Louis festival or theatrical premiere.
3) Be submitted with English subtitles if in a language other than English.
4) Be submitted with all contact info, including mailing address, phone number, email, and appropriate entry-fee payment.

In some instances, we are willing to accept and screen works-in-progress, provided that the versions submitted will work for the audience and jury.

It is strongly preferred that films not be widely available on video/DVD, cable, YouTube, Vimeo, iTunes, Facebook, Amazon Prime, or VOD in the St. Louis region before the festival dates. A film's availability on one of these platforms does not absolutely disqualify an entry, but first priority will be given to works that are true premieres.

Public cast/crew screenings, especially features, before the event are also discouraged.

Music rights and all copyright clearances are the sole responsibility of the filmmaker.

Cinema St. Louis (CSL) will not be held responsible for any legal disputes regarding the exhibition of this film.

Entry Procedure:

Provide complete information on FilmFreeway. Films should be submitted as secure online screeners on the platform (do not send DVDs or Blu-rays to our office). All preview materials must be received by May 31, 2021.

If your film is selected, it is mandatory that the projection master file be delivered via Dropbox or to the CSL office on a flash or hard drive NO LATER THAN June 26, 2021. All invited films should be submitted as a .mov file (Pro Res or H.264). Specs will be provided with an acceptance email.

Publicity images, if available, must also be sent promptly (300 dpi or higher electronic images are preferred in .jpg or .png format).

All entrants will be notified of the status of their submission by email no later than June 15, 2021.

Notification of acceptance or rejection will not include criticism or feedback specific to your entry.

Please contact Chris Clark at Cinema St. Louis for any/all questions and clarifications.

NOTE: At no extra charge, Showcase submissions are also eligible for consideration for the 30th Annual St. Louis International Film Festival, held Nov. 4-14, 2021. You will not need to resubmit your film.

Overall Rating
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  • Nate Carroll

    Great communication, amazing masterclasses, and even an awards ceremony!

    July 2020
  • Really enjoyed our experience with the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase. A must for all St. Louis filmmakers. COVID-19 meant our film did not play in the wonderful Tivoli Theater — which was unfortunate — but I guess we shouldn't have made a film during a once in a century pandemic.

    July 2020
  • The St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase has time and again pushed me to deliver bigger and better work every single year, but has also inspired me to meet new filmmakers and step outside of my comfort zone.

    I cannot think of a more hardworking and genuinely supportive and kind film event staff in St. Louis, or even Missouri, as those at Cinema St. Louis, who push themselves to make the festival better each and every year.

    It's always an easy-to-follow process with a lot of transparent communication.

    Even in the face of a global pandemic, the Showcase made magic happen digitally, and I'll forever be thankful for that.

    July 2020
  • Eric Chandler

    If you’re a local filmmaker, plugged into the social pipeline in St. Louis, this festival should be a must. I would go as far as saying that the showcase should be a mandatory entry for every student at any film school in Missouri. Even with everything going on in 2020, the showcase staff were on top of it. There were no delays and no connection issues (the whole festival was done via zoom). I’m happy with my experience. Do yourself a favor and submit. Also, if selected you can bypass the fee to SlIFF, which is always a plus.

    July 2020
  • Daniel Neville

    Great all around, good variety of awards 👍

    July 2020