UPDATE: GenreBlast 2 will come to you from the amazing Alamo Drafthouse in Winchester, VA on September 8-10! Rejoice!

Horror? Check! Sci-Fi/Fantasy? Check! Action/Adventure? Check! Martial Arts? Check! Suspense/Thriller? Check! Grindhouse/Exploitation? Check! International Cinema? Check! All systems go! Let's rock!

GenreBlast is an upstart film festival that had a very successful first year at the revitalized state-of-the-art State Theatre in wonderful downtown Culpeper, Virginia. Our second year will be even bigger and better in every way possible!

We celebrate the finest in true genre cinema and we're looking for your best features, shorts, music videos and screenplays in the categories of horror, action/adventure, sci-fi, fantasy, martial arts, exploitation, documentaries, animation, grindhouse, suspense/thriller, international, experimental and more!

A festival for filmmakers, by filmmakers. GenreBlast is a party for filmmakers and film lovers that strives to become one of the best new independent film festivals around.


We have a special category for Virginia and Tennessee filmmakers to submit for next to nothing. We are also LGBTQ friendly and love diversity in our crazy, whacked-out genre cinema.


Pirates / Clowns / Ninjas / Robots / Bad Cops / Good Cops / Dirty Cops / Cyborgs / Androids / Clones / Doppelgangers / Freaks / Geeks / Weirdos / Serial Killers / Angels / Demons / Thieves / Rogues / Giants / Bandits / Vampires / Werewolves / Skeletons / Ghosts / Zombies / Wrestlers / Warriors / Boxers / Gladiators / Spies / Soldiers / Martians / Astronauts / Witches / Priests / Goblins / Planes / Trains / Automobiles / Barflies / Hookers / Ho's / Prostitutes / Pimps / Vigilantes / Gangsters / Mobsters / Ex-cons / Criminals / Prisoners / Superheroes / Supervillains / Mercenaries / Drifters / Wanderers / Strangers / Visitors / Aliens / Mentors / Sages / Wizards / Sorcerers / Warlocks / Unicorns


China / Japan / USA / Canada / UK / Ireland / South Africa / Malaysia / Thailand / Taiwan / Singapore / Australia / Russia / Mexico / Iceland / Norway / Finland / Denmark / Sweden / France / Germany / South Korea / Philippines / Poland / Hungary / Austria / Switzerland / Spain / Egypt / Israel / India / Italy / Portugal and EVERYWHERE else on planet Earth and beyond!


Awards & Prizes

First prize in the top categories will receive a trophy, possible sponsor swag, cash prizes and more.

Runners up in each category will receive a certificate and possibly an assortment of cool sponsor prizes.

Attending filmmakers/screenwriters will receive up to two (2) weekend passes to the festival along with exclusive filmmaker lanyards to identify you as a special snowflake as well as VIP goodie bags and the royal treatment you so richly deserve that can be lacking in a lot of festivals. We will treat you right, baby!

There will be a combined awards ceremony for screenwriters and filmmakers on Sunday afternoon followed by an after party to remember!

The weekend will also be filled with other parties and informative and entertaining panels and discussions. You'll be in genre movie heaven.

Some of the categories for awards include:

Filmmaker Awards:

GB Founders Award (personally chosen by the GB founders)
Jury Award
Audience Award
Les Femmes De Genre Award
Best Overall Feature
Best Horror Feature
Best Action/Thriller Feature
Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Feature
Best Grindhouse/Exploitation Feature
Best International Feature
Funniest Feature
Best Overall Short
Best Horror Short
Best Action/Thriller Short
Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Short
Best WTF Short
Best International Short
Funniest Short
Best Produced Feature Screenplay
Best Produced Short Screenplay
Best Music Video
Best VA/TN Connection Film
Best Poster (short and feature)
Best Trailer (short and feature)
Best FX (short and feature)
Best Cinematography (short and feature)
Best Action/Fight Coreography
Best Actor In A Feature Film
Best Actor In A Short Film
Best Actress In A Feature Film
Best Actress In A Short Film
Best Supporting Actor (Feature)
Best Supporting Actress (Feature)
Best Score (Short and Feature)
Best Song

Screenwriting Awards:

Best Overall Short Script (and runners-up)
Best Overall Feature Script (and runners-up and honorable mention)
GB Founders Award
Best Horror Script
Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Script
Best Action/Thriller Script
Best WTF Script
Funniest Script

Plus more categories could be added when selections are made...

Rules & Terms


Email us if you have any questions about anything before you submit.

We want to make it an even playing field for anyone who submits via FilmFreeway. We don't play favorites, we don't pander to anyone and we don't kiss up to the big festivals or follow trends. We program what we think will play well over the weekend. It's that simple.

Your film/script MUST fall into at least one of these genres:

Horror / Thriller / Action / Adventure / Sci-fi / Martial Arts / Fantasy / Grindhouse / Exploitation / Experimental

Dramas and comedies are welcome as long as they also fall into one of the above genre categories as well. For example, if your drama has zombies in it or your comedy has ninjas in it, we're interested. If, on the other hand, your drama is about the life of a narcoleptic wheat farmer, then we might not be for you. If you're not sure, you can always email us with questions. We don't bite unless you pay us to do so.

Feature films and scripts qualify as at least 60 mins/pgs and up. Short films and scripts qualify as 59 mins/pgs and under. Pretty simple.

Your work will not be posted anywhere online. That would defeat the purpose of having a live film festival.

By submitting, you agree that you own all copyrights and intellectual properties to your work. Any violations of that agreement will result in immediate disqualification from the festival and a cheerfully vulgar rejection letter.

GenreBlast reserves the right to use any part of your submission for promotional purposes regarding the festival itself. This includes Facebook, Twitter, local advertising, promo trailers and other related venues. Don't freak out, this stuff is pretty routine. We just might use a clip or still from your work to help promote the festival so we can sell tickets for people to see your awesome flick. That means we like you.

Submitting to GenreBlast Film Festival does not guarantee selection. Neither does liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter. Cash bribes might work, but why risk it? We reserve the right to disqualify anyone based on violation of rules & regulations, objectionable content (although we can handle a lot) rude behavior via email or social media, poor sound and/or video quality (as in unwatchable) or due to a love of Kevin James films.

International films not in English MUST be subtitled or dubbed in English. We Americans are stupid. We need subtitles because we're too lazy and arrogant to learn a second language. Do us a favor and make sure your awesome foreign film has those lovely ENGLISH subtitles. Thanks! Seriously though, dubbing blows. Don't do it.

Pretty much anything is fair game as far as content is concerned. We love violence, raunch, gore and outrageous situations, just make sure it all comes with a plot.

Feel free to contact us with any non-idiotic questions. If it's a good question, we'll get right back to you. If it sucks, we'll just ignore you.

If you're not sure about something, please email us before you submit. We'll answer your queries as quickly as possible.

Happy submitting!

40 Reviews

Overall Rating
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    Jason Zink

    I wasn't even able to make it to the fest and these guys still managed to keep me informed, excited and also proud to have been included in their festival. Can't wait to make it out for a future project!

    August 2017
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Jason, your review is mucho appreciated!

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    Steven Kelleher

    GenreBlast is the real, fun deal. Hilarious end energetic programming that reflects a genuine, depth love of genre cinema. This festival is going somewhere really great. Won't be surprised to see it leading the pack in the very near future.

    March 2017
    Response from festival:

    Thank you, Steve! Beautiful Dreamer was a beautiful hit at the first-ever GenreBlast! Your award for Best FX for a Short Film is well-deserved!

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    Izzy Lee

    GenreBlast awarded my film Innsmouth Best Horror Short at its inaugural 2016 festival, but that's not the reason for my 5-star review. While I wasn't able to attend, the communication was great, the hard work was evident, and it's clear that this festival really cares. These peeps are awesome AF. Submit today!

    January 2017
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Izzy! You are one of the best short filmmakers out there and we are honored to know you and screen your work!

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    Jaysen Buterin

    Everything about the Genre Blast Film Festival really is out of this world - from the films and the filmmakers, the programming and the programmers, even from the opening announcements down to the awards themselves, and it's all done with such cinematic sincerity that it's immediately noticeable the instant they greet you as you arrive on the red carpet!

    There are a lot of genre film fests out there that like to market themselves as being run BY filmmakers FOR filmmakers, and Genre Blast goes not just one small step further but a gigantic leap forward. Because it's a film festival run by film lovers AND filmmakers FOR film lovers and filmmakers. Having worked the film festival circuit with their own award-winning movie magic, they've been able to get a first-hand glimpse at what works and what doesn't, both for the film festival and the filmmakers.

    I was lucky enough to attend last year with my film and even more honoured to be nominated for three awards, but it's the friendships that I made there, that continue to make me an even better filmmaker. The Genre Blast Film Festival... just submit already. You'll be glad that you did... trust me!

    November 2016
    Response from festival:

    Jaysen, you are a demigod amongst mere mortals. GenreBlast was made better with your presence and we might just have to cancel the next one if you don't show up!

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    Ron Bonk

    awesome fest, one to watch over next few years as it grows big time!!

    October 2016
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Ron, much appreciated! She Kills is such a kickass film to screen!