The Stony Brook Film Festival is produced by the Staller Center for the Arts on the campus of Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY. The festival in 2018 will be the 23rd year of this very competitive and highly selective ten-day festival. All films are shown on our 40 foot screen in the Staller Center’s Main Stage Theater which seats over a 1000. Filmmakers who attend may be provided with travel assistance, lodging, and access to all our parties and events.

The festival works very hard to make sure that all films selected get seen by as many people as possible, including film industry insiders, distributors and other festival programmers. We also work very hard to insure that each screening has as close to a sold out house as possible. In 2017 we had over 14,000 attendees which included passholders and single ticket buyers.

Over the past 23 years the Stony Brook Film Festival has shown numerous New York, East Coast, US and World Premieres from over 74 different countries, and more than 230 of them have been directed by women.

Attendeees have included Alan Alda, Tim Blake Nelson, Celine Bonnier, Steve Buscemi, Brian Cox, Dana Delany, Stephen Dorff, Karoline Herfurth, Sylvia Hoeks, Brent Huff, Nathan Lane, Ralph Macchio, Jena Malone, Mary Stuart Masterson, Joe Pantoliano, Christopher Plummer, John Putch, Missi Pyle, Eran Riklis, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Campbell Scott, Leelee Sobieski, David Strathairn, Tilda Swinton, Martin Talbot, Christine Vachon, Valerie Weiss and many others.

Travel assistance, lodging, awards, prizes and gifts are provided at upwards of $50,000 in value. Every festival features Jury and Audience Choice Awards, as well as other awards recognizing special achievements given at the discretion of the Jury.

Audience Choice Best Feature

Audience Choice for Best Short

Jury Award for Best Feature

Jury Award for Best Short

We accept features and shorts in narrative, documentary and animated categories.

Films must not have been screened in U.S. prior to July 1, 2017 and must not have been completed prior to January 1, 2017.

We accept the following screening formats: Blu-Ray, DCP, MPEG 2, Pro Res 422 or contact us.

Competition is open to U.S. and International entries.

No more than a total of 2 (two) submissions are permitted per director, and no more than a total of 5 (five) submissions are permitted per distributor or producer, regardless of film categories. If you are a distributor and would like to submit more than five films please email us your request and we will get back to you.

Feature films are 30 minutes in length or longer. Short films are under 30 minutes in length.

Films not in English must be subtitled in English.

Films that have shown theatrically or broadcast on television in New York prior to the Festival or are available on DVD or VOD are not generally eligible for consideration.

Overall Rating
  • Garrett Tripp

    This festival was incredibly well done, gracious and generous with amazing films from talented filmmakers from around the world. We are honored to have been included.

    September 2017
  • Robin Grey

    The festival was superb! Way beyond my expectation. Every detail was thought through and carried out flawlessly. The festival team was very friendly and professional. They went out of their way to be helpful. The filmmakers came from all over the world and were a joy to be with. The award swag bags were filled with great items. Take your film to Stonybrook, you won't be disappointed!

    September 2017
  • The Sounding film

    Amazing, amazing, amazing. Myself and my team cannot even begin to sum up how brilliant this festival is in a review like this. Every single element - from programming to hospitality to audience curation to personal interaction - is managed with care and attention. The programming is truly visionary - unique and specific and informed - and the programmers care deeply about what they program, which is done with a purity rarely possible. Filmmakers are treated like royalty from start to finish from the first comments on their film when invited, to each moment of prep and publicity, to two full meals and open bar events every night (one filmmakers only, one open to the public). Festival staffers are literally standing by to take tired (and perhaps tipsy) filmmakers back to their beautiful hotel on the waterfront at any hour of the night, brilliant introductions are individually made to each film, all the filmmakers are mentioned by name in front of literally a thousand audience members each night, there are unrushed and thoughtfully moderated Q&As. Oh, and INCREDIBLE awards sponsored by HBO given at a beautiful closing night ceremony if you are lucky enough to be honored by the jury or the audience!! The audiences are smart and curious and loyal. And the screen! Did we mention the screen! HUGE (thirty feet high at least) and beautiful and state of the art. And perhaps most important: the audience. The huge beautiful attentive awak interested audience. Somehow Alan and his amazing team are able to fill the one thousand seat theater over and over again for EVERY SINGLE SCREENING. Really fill it. And they do it with grace, and energy, and effort and integrity and by having built up a trust over the past 25 years that can't be bought. Go, go, go. You owe it to yourself.

    August 2017
    Response from festival:

    Wow, thank you! We loved having your film and the entire THE SOUNDING team at the festival. It was such a pleasure!

  • Elliott Murphy

    My experience at the Stony Brook Film Festival was so much more then I imagined it could be. Alan and his staff were so efficient and professional and took excellent care of the filmmakers in attendance. I would say that the key word for this wonderful festival is respect - both the audience and the filmmakers are treating with nothing but respect and consideration. Don't miss next year!

    August 2017
    Response from festival:

    Elliot, you are the best! Thank you for the kind words. It was such a pleasure to meet you and have you at the festival.

  • Daniella Rabbani

    SUCH A FANTASTIC EXPERIENCE! I highly recommend this featival for filmmakers and film goers alike!

    August 2017
    Response from festival:

    Thank you, Daniella. We really enjoyed meeting you and having you and your film at the festival.