Founded by filmmaker Cressandra Thibodeaux, the Bechdel Film Festival is dedicated to supporting and promoting female filmmakers. The festival will take place, February 15-22, 2018 in Houston, Texas. In addition to various genres of short films and documentary feature films, the festival includes works-in-progress, panel discussions, talk-backs, script readings, opening night reception, an award ceremony and much more. Furthermore, there will be given a Bechdel Test Award to one of the films at the festival.

All films must be directed or co-directed by a female filmmaker. All screenplays must be either written by a female or have a strong female protagonist.

Awards & Prizes

Bechdel Film Festival is an International Film Festival and nonprofit organization. BFF is dedicated to supporting and promoting female filmmakers. The festival screens films in all genres by female filmmakers of all ages. We highlight Texas filmmakers, works-in-progress, short films, films on contemporary artists, high school filmmakers and scripts with strong female protagonists. We are committed to working with and inspiring younger and emerging filmmakers as well, and bringing guest artists from all ages and all stages of their careers to come together and inspire and mentor one another.

In addition, we will be giving a "Bechdel Test" Award to one of the films in the festival.

Rules & Terms

Deadlines for Submissions:
Early: February 23, 2017
Regular: May 1, 2017
Late: October 20, 2017
FilmFreeway Late Deadline: December 25, 2017

1st Annual Bechdel Film Festival
Founded in 2015 by filmmaker Cressandra Thibodeaux, the Bechdel Film Festival is dedicated to supporting and promoting female filmmakers. The festival will take place February 15-22, 2018 in Houston, Texas. In addition to films from around the world, the festival includes "Works-in-Progress," panel discussions, VIP receptions, and more.

Call for Submissions: 1st annual Bechdel Film Festival
Bechdel Film Association announces the call for submissions for the 1st annual Bechdel Film Festival, February 15-22, 2018 in Houston, Texas.

In addition to showcasing the best of independent cinema from around the globe, the 1st annual Bechdel Film Festival is specifically seeking films to feature in the following special program categories:

• Short Films on Contemporary Artists
• Experimental Films​
• Works-In-Progress
• Spotlight on Web Series
• Spotlight on Texas Filmmakers: Short films made in Texas
• Emerging Filmmakers Program: Short films from filmmakers 18 and younger may submit for free
• Feature-length screenplays with a strong female protagonist

Submit
Filmmakers may submit their films via FilmFreeway.

Emerging Student Filmmakers (high school & younger) submit for Free with a fee waiver.
Emerging Filmmakers submit for free under their respective categories.
Emerging Filmmaker films MUST be works written, directed, and shot by high school age students – 18-YEARS OLD AND YOUNGER. This category is not for university or college filmmakers. Adult supervision is limited to advisory capacity. Emerging filmmakers must submit a copy of his/her valid high school identification (student id, school record, passport, drivers license or official identification that includes date of birth) to bechdelfilms@gmail.com receive the fee waiver and to be eligible for this category.

Submission Guidelines
Films must have been completed after January 1, 2015.
Online screeners only. Include screener link and password (If required) in your submission.
Press kit is optional - electronic only, please
A Houston premiere is required. World and US Premieres are not required, however premieres (especially Texas premieres) are preferred and premiere status may be one of the factors considered when determining a film's inclusion in the Festival.
The festival does not screen films available on VOD or any online streaming portal at the time of the festival. However, the festival reserves the right to make exceptions to this rule.

All films in a language other than English must be subtitled in English for festival presentation.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:
==> We HIGHLY recommend reading our rules, process and FAQs on our website: http://bechdelfilms.com

BECHDEL FILM FESTIVAL COMPETITION
Please read this agreement carefully before you submit your film. By submitting your film, you expressly acknowledge and agree that you shall be bound by the terms of this agreement.

GUIDELINES FOR ALL FILMS. Films must have been completed after January 1, 2015. Short films must not exceed 50 minutes in length. All non-English language films must have English subtitles. A separate entry form and additional entry fee must be submitted for each film.

ENTRY FORM AND PREVIEW MATERIALS FOR ALL FILMS. All films must be submitted and paid for through FilmFreeway. Illegible or incomplete entry forms will not be accepted. Entry forms that do not include full payment of entry fees or working online screener URL by December 25, 2017 will not be accepted.

ONLINE SCREENERS. We accept online screeners through FilmFreeway via Vimeo.com. We will not watch films submitted on any other websites. Bechdel Film Festival, its members, directors, employees, and volunteers are not responsible for broken or incorrectly submitted URLs. Submissions may not be withdrawn from the Festival once they have been entered, except at the sole discretion of the Festival directors. There are no refunds for entries with incomplete entry forms, or incorrectly formatted preview materials. In our experience, Vimeo.com screeners have the best HD playback, and are preferred by our screening team. Bechdel Film Festival no longer accepts DVD screeners.

REVIEW AND SELECTION PROCESS. All entries are automatically included in the general Bechdel Film Festival Competition. Bechdel Film Festival will review films in their entirety. Films will be watched and reviewed by members of the Selection Committee; a volunteer group of Houston-area filmmakers, film enthusiasts and critics. After the final submission deadline, the Selection Committee will review the total scores of all the films in competition and select final films from a group of the top scorers. In addition to the top scoring films, final screening decisions will be influenced by the time constraints of showcases (each showcase runs for approximately 90-minutes, with an average of eight short films). Award information is explained below. All prizes are subject to change, and updates to the prize package will be posted online at bechdelfilms.com

AWARD INFORMATION. Awards will be presented in the following categories: Outstanding First-Time Director; Festival Director’s Choice; Outstanding Live Action Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Smartphone Shorts (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Animated Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Documentary Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Feature Documentary (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding High School Film (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Web Series (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Horror/Sci-Fi Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Contemporary Art Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Experimental Short (selected by a panel jury); Outstanding Texas Film (selected by a panel jury) and Outstanding Works-In-Progress (selected by a panel jury). In addition, audience members in each screening will vote on Audience Favorites. Awards are subject to change before the event, with an updated list to be posted at www.bechdelfilms.com. All awards will be announced at the final Filmmaker Brunch.

NOTIFICATION OF ACCEPTANCE. Letters of inclusion or non-inclusion, will be sent to the email address provided on the entry form no later than January 15, 2018. Bechdel Film Festival does not send physical mail — please ensure that your email address is accurate on your application. Bechdel Film Festival is not liable for emails delayed by spam filters, server rejections, or outdated email addresses.

SCREENING FORMATS. Films, acceptance contracts and other materials mentioned in the Letter of Acceptance must arrive at the Festival office no later than 11:59pm, January 15, 2018. Bechdel Film Festival requires two files for projection: .MOV file or .mp4 file. Both files may be uploaded or sent via mail on a USB flash drive to be returned in a provided self-addressed, self-stamped envelope. Films with incomplete materials by the deadline will forfeit their ability to screen in the festival. Bechdel Films and its members, directors, employees, and volunteers are not responsible for lost, misplaced, and undelivered film and media.

FILMMAKER ATTENDANCE. Bechdel Film Festival encourages filmmakers to attend the festival. All filmmakers will receive passes for all film screenings (either in the general theater or in our special Filmmaker Lounge/Garden Patio.) Bechdel Film Festival is unable to provide financial compensation for travel expenses or additional expenses incurred during the Festival week.

COMMUNICATIONS. Bechdel Film Festival does not send physical mail — please make sure the email address in your entry form is accurate. Changes of email address can be sent to bechdelfilms@gmail.com. Bechdel Film Festival is not liable for emails delayed by spam filters, server rejections, outdated email addresses or any other technical or human error. Bechdel Film Festival staff can be reached by email at bechdelfilms@gmail.com, or by mailing Bechdel Films, 800 Aurora Street, Houston, TX 77009, USA.

PUBLICITY AND MARKETING. All selected films may be excerpted for publicity purposes. Bechdel Film Festival reserves the right to promote any film to print, broadcast or internet media as required to market the Festival or our parent organization.

THEATRICAL SCREENINGS. By submitting your project to Bechdel Film Festival, the filmmaker grants non-exclusive rights to screen their film once at a public programming session to then be chosen to possibly screen in the Festival. Films screened will not be announced prior to the event, and filmmakers will not be informed of their participation. The top films will be selected for this event. By accepting inclusion in Bechdel Film Festival, the filmmaker grants non-exclusive rights to showcase their film during the festival week (February 15-22, 2018) in as many screenings as required. This includes the “Best Of” showcase which will play after the Festival ends. In addition, Bechdel Film Festival has non-exclusive rights to repeat the showcases through February 6, 2019 for fundraising purposes. All ticket sales are property of Bechdel Film Festival.

INTERNET BROADCAST. Bechdel Film Festival may include films screened at Bechdel Film Festival available for commercial internet broadcast and download. Filmmakers have the ability to opt out of this program upon acceptance into the festival. This is an optional program in which the filmmaker has the ability to opt-in on acceptance of the Participation Agreement, sent on inclusion into the festival.

TELEVISION BROADCASTS. Bechdel Film Festival reserves the non-exclusive right to repeat the various showcases on local (Houston metropolitan area) cable access channels without any further compensation to the filmmaker. Filmmakers have the ability to opt out of this program upon acceptance into the festival. This is an optional program in which the filmmaker has the ability to opt-in on acceptance of the Participation Agreement, sent on inclusion into the festival.

I hereby grant the Bechdel Film Festival 2018, presented by Bechdel Films, all rights necessary to exhibit and promote the above-referenced film at the 2018 Festival. I represent that such exhibition will not violate or infringe upon any rights whatsoever (including copyright, trademark, musical or contract right) of any person or entity. I further represent that I am authorized to submit the above-referenced film and, if selected, will deliver the screening print to the Festival office no later than January 15, 2018 Additionally, I indemnify the Festival from any and all claims, demands, losses, costs, damages, and attorney's fee arising out of or in connection with third parties in regards to the screening of said film. Further, I hereby agree that I have read and agree to the Rules and Regulations and the Terms and Conditions for submissions to the Bechdel Film Festival 2018