In its fourth year, Wolf Tree Film Festival aims to showcase films set in the Great Lakes region or that include themes or topics related to the region, as well as the work of filmmakers who reside in or grew up in the Great Lakes region. The Great Lakes region is defined as any state or territory that touches one of the Great Lakes (including Ontario, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York).

Submitted films should be no longer than 30 minutes, and all genres will be considered.

The festival will take place at The Franke Center for the Arts in Marshall, MI* and will include screenings of each selected film, a Q&A with select filmmakers, an awards presentation, and a filmmaker roundtable with industry professionals.

The Wolf Tree Film Festival is housed in historic Marshall, Michigan, a gorgeous small town with a vibrant artistic community. Hosted by the Franke Center for the Arts and Marshall’s Youngish Professionals Committee, the festival is held at Franke Center, originally a church built in 1921, now an arts complex that is the proud home of world-class concerts, inspiring theater, and award-winning movies.

Why “Wolf Tree?” According to legend, the Wolf Tree was a lone, prominent tree that once stood in the middle of Marshall. The first settler in the area sought refuge in the heights of the tree as wolves and bears roamed the dirt lane and forest that would one day become the city’s downtown. Later, a platform was built in the large oak’s branches where it is said a sentry, seeking the faint glow of wolves’ eyes, would hunt, eager to protect the village from threats hidden in the darkness below. It is a wild history, a bold story, and a great homage to the films that will be featured at this exciting annual event.

*The festival will adhere to all public health and safety recommendations at the time of the event.

A juried award will be presented for Best of Festival, Best Documentary, Best Comedy, Best Drama, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Ensemble and Best Student Film. Additional juried awards may be added prior to the festival, pending film entries.

An Audience Choice award will also be given.

All award winners may receive a physical award. Pending festival sponsorship and donations, additional small cash prizes may also be provided.

Films are accepted only through electronic submission via FilmFreeway. Application fee is $5.

More than one entry may be submitted, however each entry must be accompanied by a separate entry form and entry fee.

All rights must be held by the individual making the submission and/or legal documentation must be provided that permission has been given by the copyright holder of the film to be shown as part of the festival.

Film submission grants Wolf Tree the right to screen your film in front of a live audience as well as part of a live stream during and at the festival, if applicable.

Films selected for screening will be notified via email. Awards will be determined by a juried panel (prior to the festival) and/or audience selection (at the festival). Awards will be presented the night of the festival and shared through various media channels following the festival.

Wolf Tree reserves the right to promote clips/stills from your film on social media, based on the press kit(s) provided upon film submission/selection.

Wolf Tree retains the right to change the date and venue of the festival under special circumstances. All filmmakers will be informed ASAP about any changes through our online platforms/email.

Wolf Tree places no restrictions on your work in terms of premiere status or whether your work has been made available online.

Any technical issues with the submitted films are 100% the responsibility of the filmmakers. If, at the time of judging, the video file doesn’t work or doesn’t have English subtitles (if in a language other than English), it will be automatically rejected without refund. Please contact the festival team ASAP if there are any issues with the submission process and a solution will be found.

Wolf Tree will not provide submission refunds.

By submitting to Wolf Tree filmmakers agree to the noted terms and conditions. Wolf Tree reserves the right to update our terms and conditions. Upon update, each submitting party will be notified.

Overall Rating
  • Hugo Lacasse

    Amazing!! We got a selection here! Such a great Film Fest!

    January 2021
  • Anna Rust

    Absolutely wonderful film festival -- fantastic hosts, great roundtable, great screenings. I was overjoyed to be a part of it.

    January 2021
  • What a wonderful festival! Highly recommended for any filmmaker with a connection to the Great Lakes region.
    Look forward to entering future projects.

    January 2021
  • Great hosts, wonderful screening (a packed audience!). Really honored to be selected.

    Thanks, Wolf Tree!

    February 2020
  • Thomas Butcher

    A one-of-a-kind film festival put on by some wonderful people! Most of the filmmakers who had films being screened attended, and each had an opportunity to speak to the 100+ sized audience before their film rolled. It's clear that the people of Marshall, MI are big fans of indie film and the festival. I've been submitting and attending fests for five years now, and this one is well worth the entry fee. Thanks or having me!

    February 2020