The IMDb qualifying Chicago Indie Film Awards in partnership with the Chicago Movie magazine is devoted to the art of indie filmmaking; a journey of artistic expressionism, compelling narratives and unique forms and voices in independent filmmaking and screenwriting.

The festival celebrates indie U.S. and international film and script projects through its annual and bi-monthly competition. The festival is looking for fiction, documentary, experimental, animation, comedy and all genres of filmmaking which can inspire us, challenge us and make us think.

In addition to being visual, cinema combines most aspects of art; these include symbolism, subject matter, theme and background. Cinema is the most influential form of art since it is the only form in which you can have the largest impact on a wide range of individuals. Our team brings together filmmakers, actors, directors, writers, artists and critics from US, Canada, Germany, France, Japan, United Kingdom and all over the globe in order to network and select the best of each category.

Chicago Indie Film Awards is committed to indie filmmaking and the language of cinema as an art form. Our mission is to inspire & motivate people to discover the world through the art of motion pictures and indie filmmaking.

Best Narrative Feature
Best Narrative Short
Best Documentary Feature
Best Documentary short
Best Experimental
Best Animation
Best Science Fiction
Best Horror
Best Director
Best Producer
Best Cinematography
Best Editor
Best Actress
Best Actor
Best Script
Best Unproduced script
Best TV Series/Pilot/Web
Best Comedy
Best Student Film
Best Music Video
Best Thriller
Best Trailer
Best Composer
Best First Time Filmmaker
Best Female Filmmaker
Best Indie Film

Films can be available online and still submit to the festival.
Films must have been completed within the past 4 years.
Shorts must be less than 50 minutes.
Chicago Indie Film Awards can use stills, poster, headshots and trailers to promote films and artists through Chicago Movie magazine and other media partners of the festival.
Entry fees are non refundable.

Overall Rating
  • Janet Van Ham

    Professional team, proactive communication, quality presentation

    April 2023
  • Tyler Duffy

    Had a wonderful experience with this festival. My documentary won best feature documentary and they were great about offering discounts for promotional opportunities.

    April 2023
  • Nasser Aldhaheri

    Great honor to be part of this festival

    April 2023
  • It is a pleasure working with the administration and staff. I strongly urge all independent film makers to participate in this festival and thank them for their acknowledgement of my screenplay CASH.

    April 2023
  • " As a Producer, my experience with the Chicago Indie Film Awards has been overwhelming. Their response was quick and information was laid out accurately. Having won as best producer in the Festival has given me a positive mark in the Global Creative arena. I’m honored to be part of this Festival. Im proud that our humble film from the Philippines has been recognized by such prestigious Festival.

    April 2023