ABOUT US:

---Recently recognized as one of the TOP 50 FILM FESTIVALS WORTH THE ENTRY FEE IN 2022 by MovieMaker Magazine ---

We are a multicultural and BIPOC film festival that showcases diverse representation and gender/identity parity. Our organization seeks to cultivate a dynamic community that gives artists an honest space to share their unique stories. Our ultimate aim is to be a platform in living color; inclusive, intersectional, and disruptive.
By offering a cutting-edge and fresh take on the traditional festival experience, we seek to bring independent creatives together with future collaborators in the television, film, and digital space.

No matter the genre or medium, we pride ourselves on being an entertainment and media sanctuary where all are welcomed, seen and celebrated.

Our mission and vision is simple:
Discovery > Celebrity.
Lead with help.
Elevate with value.
And close the knowledge gap between indie and industry.

The festival is aptly named after OSCAR MICHEAUX, a pioneer independent Filmmaker, described as one the most successful African-American filmmakers of the first half of the 20th century. His legacy lives on through his writing, directing, producing, and distribution of over 44 feature films during his lifetime.

Our commitment to diversity and inclusion lies beyond a buzzword. While diversity refers to the traits that make people unique, inclusion refers to the behaviors and social norms that ensure people feel welcome. Our main focus is to curate an environment where all feel part of a community, and can identify with the stories they see play out on screen. We invite all aspects of individualism and uniqueness including: race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, military service, or other non-merit factor.

MFF has been featured in domestic and international press and publications like: Forbes, Black Enterprise, Moviemaker Magazine, Shutterstock, LA Sentinel, CNN Philippines, EUR Web, Getty, Deadline, Cheddar News, XHBY (China), Spectrum News, Official Black Magazine, Shadow & Act, Popsugar and NBC and CBS. In addition, MFF alumni have gone on to sign with top agencies and management companies, work with perennial production companies, ink deals for their projects, and work with major studios/networks.
2022 Festival Season:

In addition to the screening content, filmmakers and attendees had access to digital panels and informational Master Class workshops, social events and mixers, unique entertainment and special industry screenings: The Woman King clips & conversations, and Delia’s Gone.

To conclude the weekend, at our 3 hour awards ceremony, we awarded 38 outstanding projects that screened during the festival, and highlighted 3 special honorees. These awards go to creators who embody independence while operating within and outside of mainstream Hollywood, creating their own path, while simultaneously opening the door for others:

Oscar Micheaux Pioneer of Excellence Award - Brenda Gilbert (President) BRON Studios (Judas & the Black Messiah, Bombshell, Joker)
Michael Ajakwe Trailblazer of Influence Award - Ernest Dickerson (Award-winning filmmaker) (Double Play, Juice, X)
Cesar Chavez Civil Impact Award - Anthony Conley & Amber Love (Covenant House California Program Directors)

**SUBMIT FOR CONSIDERATION & OPPORTUNITY TO SCREEN AT OUR 2023 FESTIVAL**
Our Promise:
We pride ourselves on accepting a plethora of diverse projects, and our promise to creators is that every submission is viewed in its entirety (start to end) by our programming team before a determination is made. We understand how much time, effort and money goes into creating independently, and we want you to know that we honor your commitment to the art.

2023 Submission Updates:
Please make sure to read the requirements thoroughly before submitting your project. If your short film or web series has a runtime longer than 25 minutes, please be sure to submit it in the *PLUS (Extended Runtime)* category.
We currently only accept produced works - no scripts/screenplays.
NOTIFICATION DATES: This year, we will have two notification dates. Those who submit by the Regular Deadline may receive a notification of official selection or finalist status by May 15th. Submissions received during the Late and Extended Late Deadline, as well as ALL submissions will receive a final notification of OFFICIAL SELECTION or NOT SELECTED by the end of day 11:59pm PDT on Friday, June 2, 2023.
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A word from the founders:

We started this festival in 2018 with one goal in mind - to help, inspire, educate, and entertain the unseen and unheard. As Emmy-nominated creators our aim was to shift the spotlight from our own purpose and shine it onto others who needed a platform to showcase their unique art and connect with other like-minded creatives.
Our first year, we recruited every single film that was a part of the festival’s programming lineup, and donated all of our proceeds to a non profit organization with the goal of giving back to the community and sincerely helping others.

We come from very humble beginnings and limited resources, and growing the company through a global pandemic has not been an easy feat. But what keeps us coming back has been the overwhelming response from our creatives and the community - a needed pulse and heartbeat that Hollywood severely lacks.

Oscar Micheaux once said, “there is no barrier to success which diligence and perseverance cannot hurdle. That our self-image is so powerful it unwittingly becomes our destiny.” And this mindset has provided us with the endurance and the dexterity to continue to serve our creatives and those who walk through our festival gates.
We don’t just look at ourselves as an organization or a company.

We’re a family. A family rooted in Christian values that no matter who comes through our doors will be humbly served and celebrated with honesty, equity, and most importantly with love. We know first hand how hard it can be seeing how capitalism and the old guard of the “industry” continue to dilute and destroy the dreams of so many talented, independent artists. And that is why we’re here. To be a stepping stone of encouragement and inspiration. As we grow, we want to incorporate more strategic measures and practices that will help launch the careers of the many who look to the Micheaux Film Festival as a beacon of encouragement, hope, and faith.

Our only ask is that you continue to support us and give back to others who can do nothing for you. Because just as breaking into this industry isn’t easy, neither is continuing to go against the grain, defying the status quo and innovating an experience and platform that changes lives and amplifies careers.

Let’s continue change the universe and this industry. One project at a time. .

Noel Braham | Courtney L. Branch
Founders

We would like to thank our 2022 sponsors:
- Braham Entertainment
-Sony Pictures Entertainment
-The Oprah Winfrey Network
-August Wilson cultural center
-Panavision
-Chase Bank
-Final Draft
-Shicken Productions
-PurposeWork(s)
-HUE You Know
-Glowstick Bay

"Outstanding" category winners will be determined by a jury of industry professionals.

Awards:

Outstanding Music Video
Outstanding Student Project
Outstanding Action/Suspense
Outstanding Horror/Thriller
Outstanding Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Outstanding Short Documentary
Outstanding Feature Documentary
Outstanding Special Programming
Outstanding Editing
Outstanding Performance Piece
Outstanding Music
Outstanding VFX
Outstanding Cinematography
Outstanding Podcast, Digital Talk, or Vlog
Outstanding International Feature
Outstanding International Short
Outstanding Dramatic Short
Outstanding Comedic Short
Outstanding Animated Short
Outstanding Dramatic Actress (short form)
Outstanding Comedic Actress (short form)
Outstanding Actor (Feature)
Outstanding Actress (Feature)
Outstanding Dramatic Writing
Outstanding Comedic Writing
Outstanding Writing (Feature)
Outstanding Directing Comedic Short Form
Outstanding Directing Dramatic Short Form
Outstanding Directing (Feature)
Outstanding Dramatic Digital Series
Outstanding Comedic Digital Series
Outstanding Unscripted Digital Series
Oscar Micheaux Trailblazer of Excellence Award
Michael Ajakwe Pioneer of Influence Award
Cesar Chavez Civil Impact Award

[] For the purposes of our festival, traditional short films can have a maximum runtime of 25 minutes.

[] Filmmakers are responsible for sorting out the copyright on their own materials. All films and projects submitted must be free from any legal disputes.

[] By submitting to us, you give us the right to screen your film in front of a live audience.

[] We may promote clips from your film on social media, based on the content you provide us with.

[] We retain the right to change the date and venue of the festival under special circumstances. All filmmakers will be informed about any changes via email.

[] We place no restrictions on your work in terms of premiere status or whether your work has previously been made available online. We do ask that any public viewing or free streaming access online of your project be taken down from moment of official selection & acceptance through the entire duration of festival (regardless if screening virtually and/or in-person) until the closing night of festival on July 17th.

[] Any technical issues with submitted films are 100% the responsibility of the filmmaker. The programming team will reach out if there is concern your film will not pass QC by DCP standards.

[] We cannot provide refunds.

[] By submitting to us you agree to our terms and conditions.

[] We reserve the right to update our terms and conditions.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Nicole Dizon

    Belated thank you to The Micheaux Film Festival for screening my directorial debut, Morena, and 2 other films that I produced (Dear Mama… and The Mason Ring). It was an honor to screen all 3 films in person. They hosted plenty of panels and networking events. I also had the privilege of screening my first short documentary with them in 2021. They exceeded my expectations in their ability to create opportunities to connect and cultivate an inclusive community even when we were online. Thank you so much, Noel, Courtney, and Tanner, for nurturing this platform for BIPOC artists! I feel so lucky to be a 2nd year-Micheaux alumna.

    November 2022
  • Mixed girl

    Love the energy of the Micheaux festival

    October 2022
  • A great festival that uplifts POC filmmakers. The fest is ran professionally with an awards show and A-List guests. We were honored to be included among the nominees.

    September 2022
  • Geoff Browne

    This is a wonderful festival. Everyone is passionate, from the filmmakers to the people running this event. True heart all around.

    September 2022
  • This is by far one of the "glitziest" film festivals I've been to. The design, decor and multiple photo opts were giving! A true "Hollywood" style film fest that most were impressed about. It also brought in big names like Brenda Gilbert of Bron Studios and Ernest R. Dickerson of "Juice". Their Q&A's were wonderful. Which led to great networking. Volunteers were cool too. The prize packages and awards weren't bad either, compared to most festivals that give you a winner's certificate if you win. Micheaux Film Fest awarded filmmakers w/ nice trophies and top winners a $30k and $60k grants for equipment. Not bad at all.

    So what was bad? The film fest to seem to care more about their sponsors and partners than filmmakers. I'm not going to knock other things like functionality, ticket sales, etc because they're still within their first five years, so I'll spare those details. But I must discuss how the founders were so enamored with their special guests that filmmakers were kicked off the red carpet so a "show and tell" for Brenda Gilbert could take place. And how a filmmaker was yelled at for utilizing an empty photo opt space for their personal video interview since the festival did not schedule a Q&A for their block. Some filmmakers, family and friends were given refunds and refused entrance during the closing ceremony. Yes, at least 60-75ppl. One was a filmmaker that flew in from New York. We both sat outside the theatre waiting for people to leave so we could be granted entrance...we never were.

    Not only was I a filmmaker, but I was also booked as media working for two different outlets, so my perspective on the filmmaker vs sponsor relationship is quite unique. On one hand, you see how they want you as media to cater to the "stars" but make the filmmakers who paid, travelled and sacrifice wait in horrendous lines for a "possible" interview. Stars were bumped to the front. Again, I'm there for media as well. I waited for the founders to speak on behalf of festival, but they kept walking past my outlet like I wasn't there. After asking for at least one question, they said they couldn't because they were behind on schedule...as I proceeded to watch them take more photos and chit chat for another 5-7mins or so.

    So in short: aesthetics were great, quality of panels were great, social media strategy was perfection, venue was great, film curation was great, but the hospitality and respect to filmmakers and media can certainly be improved. They never sent out an email apologizing to all the people that were turned away which speaks to their concern to filmmakers. I think they care a lot about the sponsors, which isn't a bad thing, but my advice for the founders is to find balance to create returning filmmakers.

    August 2022