Cinema Columbus celebrates the diverse people and stories brought to life by independent filmmakers, sparking curiosity, conversation, and understanding through independent film. Cinema Columbus works collaboratively with venues throughout central Ohio to establish an outstanding annual film festival bringing independent film from around the globe, and here at home, to our audiences.

- Best Narrative Feature
- Best Documentary Feature
- Best Short (Narrative or Documentary)
- Audience Choice


Narrative Feature Film: A narrative, animated, or experimental film 41+ minutes in length.
Documentary Feature Film: A documentary film 41+ minutes in length.
Short Film: A narrative, animated, experimental, or documentary film 40 minutes or less in length.

If your film is selected to participate in Cinema Columbus, it must be available for screening in DCP or 35mm. In the case of short films only, digital files are acceptable upon communication and consultation with festival team.

Foreign Language Films:
Foreign language films must be made available with the original language soundtrack and English subtitles.

Prior Screenings:
Entries may not publicly screen, at other film festivals or theatrically, in Franklin County, OH, or be broadcast/televised anywhere in the US (including VOD and On Demand services) before April 2024. Films may be screened at other film festivals or theatrically outside of Franklin County, OH, prior to Cinema Columbus.

Explicit Sexual Content:
No pornography. Explicit sexual content may result in disqualification.


• All films must be submitted as a secure online screener (i.e. Vimeo).
• Once a submission link has been accepted, we cannot guarantee that subsequent updates will be viewed.

Accompanying Materials:
The following materials must be submitted via and will not be returned. Incomplete entries will not be considered.
• Official online entry form through with all required information.
• Non-refundable entry fee (payable via Visa, Mastercard, or American Express):

Early-Bird submission: August 28 – October 8, 2023
Regular submission: October 9 – November 5, 2023
Late submission: November 6 - December 3, 2023
Extended submission: December 4-31, 2023

Local Entry Fee:
Films with 50% or more of the footage shot in Ohio are eligible to submit under a local entry fee.

Opt in:
By submitting your film, you agree to be added to our mailing list in order to notify you of your entry’s status as well as news about the festival.


Films selected to be screened as part of Cinema Columbus will be notified on or before February 1, 2024.

If a film is selected to participate and must be shipped, it must be prepaid, insured, and packed in proper containers. Cinema Columbus will be responsible for return shipping charges. Cinema Columbus will not pay international shipping on US films.

Cinema Columbus does not assume any liability for damage to prints due to improper containers or otherwise. All films in our possession will be insured against damage or loss while participating in the festival.

Overall Rating
  • Alan McIntyre

    Cinema Columbus is a filmmakers festival, Brett and Molly worked overtime to make it a success and were available to answer questions by email ahead of time. We screened in a classic theater, the Drexel, to a packed audience and Q&A. Lots to do in Columbus between screenings too!

    May 2023
  • Brett & Molly both did a terrific job of hosting and organizing an amazing festival that found a way to support artists and bring together the Columbus art community. This is growing to be the one of the best and brightest fests in the Midwest.

    May 2023
  • Cinema Columbus had an outstanding program of both shorts and feature films. Molly and Brett were an awesome dynamic duo whose positivity and vision elevated multiple aspects of the festival! Columbus is a large epicenter of culture in Ohio, and the many historic venues that the festival utilized truly made it feel like a community-driven event!

    May 2023
  • Michael Workman

    It was such an honor to screen at Cinema Columbus. The team was professional, quick to respond to questions and needs and supportive of it's filmmakers. Brett is an absolute National Treasure and his programming is deeply thoughtful. Truly honored to be in the selections.

    May 2023
  • Kaylin Allshouse

    A great festival with great people! Loved being able to screen our short film here. There are multiple venues across Columbus where the screenings take place and lots to see. The festival is also well attended; The three short film blocks I went to all had full theaters. Highly recommend!

    May 2023