The Tryon International Film Festival (TRIFF) is the principal annual event of the non-profit Polk County Film Initiative, now celebrating its tenth year of operation. Our festival spans multiple screening venues, seamlessly connecting film enthusiasts and artists. Additionally, depending on content, we offer a special evening amphitheater screening that includes live music, delightful culinary offerings, refreshing beverages, and a unique film experience.

Beyond the Festival, TRIFF hosts a wide array of educational sessions throughout the charming town of Tryon. These sessions facilitate valuable connections between filmmakers and students, fostering the development of original voices, inspiring fresh concepts, and encouraging collaboration within the independent film production sphere. Importantly, these sessions are open to the public and free of charge.

TRIFF also features an enchanting gala, held at the new building known as "The Fitzgerald," named after F. Scott Fitzgerald. During the festival operations, we affectionately refer to this building as TRIFF HQ, signifying our festival headquarters. The retail shops, bars, and dining establishments in the area warmly welcome festival-goers.

Plan to immerse yourself in the entire festival experience by staying at one of our exclusive B&B's alongside your fellow filmmakers. Attend your own film screening, participate in breakout sessions, explore the picturesque streets, or unwind in our complimentary VIP lounge located at the heart of the town.

Over the years, our film selection process has evolved due to the influx of high-quality submissions. We meticulously curate films characterized by exquisite craftsmanship in the categories of full-length features, short films, and documentaries. Our festival is also renowned for its Human Rights & Dignity category, a cornerstone performance grouping since our inception.

For the 2024 film season, the Tryon International Film Festival introduces two new performance categories: Best Animation - Full Length and Best Animation – Short Film, alongside the newest addition, the Environmental Awareness or Green category. These categories encompass a wide range of animation styles, including 3D animation, cartoons, puppetry animation, clay animation, computer graphics, and miscellaneous animated films in various styles.

Moreover, in line with TRIFF's dedication to education, we are thrilled to introduce two new categories dedicated to TRIFF student filmmakers, specific to TRIFF education. These categories are named the "AWE Project - High School" and the "AWE Project - College." These additions highlight our commitment to nurturing young talent and fostering a vibrant educational environment within the festival.

A note to filmmakers seeking waivers: While we consider waiver requests, we apply rigorous scrutiny to the reasons provided. Our approach to approving waivers remains conservative.

Special Note: When submitting your film, please ensure you provide all requested information on our form, including a synopsis, the director's bio and headshot, and production shots. Incomplete submissions may not be considered.

Trophies and Awards: Each year, our awards team collaborates with local artists from our community to create exceptional and thoughtful awards. If your film is honored with a performance category award and you are present at the festival, you will receive your award during the ceremony. However, for those winners unable to attend, please note that you will be responsible for the cost of shipping and delivery, given the logistical challenges of sending trophies and awards globally.

Learn more about the Tryon International Film Festival by visiting our website at or join our Facebook Group: Polk County Film Initiative, Tryon International Film Festival.

Awards & Prizes:

Judging Awards are presented in the following categories:

Best Full-Length Narrative
Best Full-Length Documentary
Best Short Documentary
Best Short Narrative
Best Student Film
Best Animation - Full Length
Best Animation - Short
Best Human Rights and Human Dignity
Best Equestrian Full-Length Feature
Best Narrative Podcast
Best Overall Film
Audience Choice
AWE Project - High School
AWE Project - College
EcoHarmony Ciné Award

A unique, handcrafted award will be given in each category, designed by our local artist community.

For national and international award winners, please ensure compliance with customs regulations, as you will be responsible for any shipping costs and customs fees.

Submission Directions and Rules for Tryon International Film Festival 2024

Thank you for your interest in submitting your film to the Tryon International Film Festival 2024, our 10th season. Please carefully read and follow the submission guidelines and rules outlined below:

1. Submission Requirements:

All film submissions must be made online with a live link to YouTube or Vimeo, accompanied by passwords for viewing access.
All submission fees are non-refundable.
Please include a director bio and headshots with your submission.
Ensure each submission contains the following information:
Your name
Production Company
Phone number
Email address
Title of work
Place of residence

2. Accepted Submission Formats:

All "Accepted Submissions" for TRYON2024 must be delivered in standard electronic film format playable on a standard PC.
Full-length feature films selected for screening at the Tryon Theatre must be delivered in DCP (Digital Cinema Package) format. If your film cannot be delivered in DCP format, we can offer guidance on how and where to produce one. You are responsible for obtaining and retrieving your DCP post-screening.
DVD submissions will not be accepted for any screening venue.

3. Submission Methods: FilmFreeway Only

4. Rules and Eligibility:

Multiple entries are allowed but must be submitted separately.
All submissions must be made via FilmFreeway only.
Films in languages other than English should be subtitled. If your film is selected for the 2024 film season, you must be prepared to provide separate closed caption (CC) files along with your film.
Winners will be notified via email, so please ensure that your contact information is accurate and up to date.

5. Responsibility and Copyright:

Entrants are solely responsible for the content of their films.
The Tryon International Film Festival and its organizers or affiliates are not responsible for any copyright, trademark, privacy, publicity, or other intellectual property infringements made by any entrants.
Films must have been completed within the past two years.
Entrants must have the rights and permissions necessary for any content, including music, locations, and appearances in the film. The Festival may request proof of these permissions at any time.

6. Prizes and Terms for Winners:

Prizes are non-transferable and cannot be exchanged for cash or substituted.
Winners are responsible for any applicable taxes, fees, and additional costs.
In the event that a specified prize becomes unavailable, the Festival may substitute a prize of equal value.
Winners may be required to participate in press and promotional activities, and the Festival may request the participation of actors and other film participants.

7. Ownership and Use of Submissions:

By submitting an entry, you grant the Festival the right to use your film during the 2024 season.

8. General Conditions:

The Festival reserves the right to modify or terminate the Contest in the event of technical issues or other causes that may compromise the fairness or integrity of the Contest.
By participating, entrants agree to the rules and decisions of the Festival and release the Festival and its affiliates from liability.
All legal matters related to this Contest are governed by the laws of the State of North Carolina.

For updates and information about the Tryon International Film Festival, please visit our Facebook page at Polk County Film Initiative and Tryon International Film Festival.

Thank you for considering the Tryon International Film Festival for your submission. We look forward to viewing your work!

Overall Rating
  • Looking forward to the next one! Thanks TRIFF

    November 2023
  • I have had the pleasure of attending this festival on two different occasions now. It's in a charming little mountain town. Everyone is so nice and welcoming. We had a blast both times.

    October 2023
  • Great people running a great festival in a great little town. What more could you ask for? Thanks for having us TRIFF!

    October 2023
  • David Weintraub

    The TRFF is an amazingly versatile and rich film festival in the quaint town of Tryon, NC. I have been proud to screen my films there and I always find a very receptive and enthusiastic audience.

    October 2023
  • Robbie Robertson

    What a great festival with such energy and passion for filmmaking and in a beautiful location! The organizers really made you feel at home and I was very impressed with the whole experience!

    October 2023