The 2017 COMMFFEST (Community Film Festival) will celebrate 12 years from October 10-16 screening in movie theatres and exhibition spaces. COMMFFEST a charitable corporation makes its home in one of Toronto’s most fast growing, economically diverse neighbourhood, Old Town Toronto, where many languages are spoken and where memorable films like Robcob; Cinderella Man, Chicago, X-Men, The Hurricane, and Against the Ropes were created.

COMMFFEST is dedicated to presenting a wide variety of local, national, and international works both long and short that can transform and shape our views of the world.

COMMFFEST mission statement:
To advance education by raising the cultural, artistic and aesthetic expression of the community and to advance the public’s appreciation of the arts through related artistic workshops and panel discussions, while promoting the works of filmmakers and artists alike.

The 2017 COMMFFEST will harmonize the disciplines of film, music, art, theatre connecting the human experience to public exhibits with forums for dialogue about social issues and cultural exchanges.

The programming: The films are chosen by a jury of professionals from a globally solicited call for submissions. Once chosen, the programming is created to generate discussion around specific world events and themes, provoking dialogue and acceptance of others and their concerns.

Behzad Sedghi Filmmaker

For me, COMMFFEST has been where my films have finally reached their maturity by connecting through the big screen with their audience. It is this connection that is essential for any artistic endeavour. As this may be the case with most other festivals, however, in my direct experience with COMMFFEST I clearly felt that each artist was given special attention, a chance to have a dialogue about their creation and ultimately was embraced in a celebration of their achievement. COMMFFEST founders and organizers are filled with the love of films and arts and clearly possess the vision and generosity to make this celebration happen every year. I look forward to being part of the next celebration either as an artist or a member of its community.

Filmmaker Leslye Abbey writes;

It was a thrill of a lifetime to come to the beautiful city of Toronto and be a part of the Commfest Film Festival.
Having Buffalo Nation: The Children Are Crying being awarded the MADA (Making A Difference Award) attests to the importance in acknowledging the suffering of America's indigenous people and the lack of knowledge thereof.

Your kindness to me and making me feel welcome was outstanding. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment and to top it off the Sunday Brunch was delicious.

Filmmaker Claudia Adams

As a filmmaker, I have learned that all the effort, money, suffering, long hours, dedication and commitment in the world won't lead to success. There is one more very essential piece of the puzzle. The film festival. A film, especially an independent film, isn't complete until it has found a festival that understands it and is passionate enough to include it as an Official Selection.
I am so grateful and honored that a festival as impressive as COMMFFEST understood what my documentary, DRY-CLEAN ONLY, was trying to say.

More about COMMFFEST

COMMFFEST attracts educators, artists, politicians, business leaders, socially conscious organizations and trendsetters.

Local Educational engagement:
Over 3000 Children from local schools Nelson Mandela Public School, Market Lane Public School, St Michael’s Catholic School, The Downtown Alternative School and afar now include the COMMFFEST festival experience as part of their annual curriculum.

COMMFFEST’S unique diversity invites the world to one local community event over 8 days in Toronto

Awards & Prizes

The COMMFFEST AWARDS: Best Film and Honourable Mention are the two categories for the MADA (Making a Difference) Awards. The MADA goes to filmmakers whose work champions’ social good and community enrichment. Whether young or old, seasoned or just beginning, cinematic storytellers are welcomed into COMMFFEST with opportunities to engage and inspire audiences

$700.00 editing suite package
Editone video would like to offer top winning filmmaker an editing package. 1 (one)day of editing in our editing suites with an operator (a $700 value)for your next film project.

Rules & Terms

FILMS OF ANY GENRES (global and local) CULTURAL, SOCIAL AND COMMUNITY ISSUES ACCEPTED combined with independently produced films. Included in that mix are childrens issues, poverty, human rights LGBTQ, women's rights, third world struggles, environmental issues affecting communities, e.t.c

All submissions are required to release the information of previous screenings.
In competition: To be considered for our prestigious MADA Award a flat fee is $80.00 for all categories when selected. DO NOT add the regular category as well as the award category.

For Local Filmmakers:
Are expected to promote their films and attend their screenings

To be eligible for awards:
All local filmmakers are expected to promote their films and attend their screenings.
all other filmmakers are required to promote through social media.

Films can not be screened during the same time frame as another festival within that area.


Festival submissions DVDs or online screeners
we do not return items without a self addressed return envelope or package

DVDs must be formatted in MPEG-2 video for Region 1/North America or Region 0/ “no region, i.e., that the DVD is authored as a video DVD and is not burned as a data disk containing Quicktime or other similar file formats. DVDs must be labeled with the following:
o Title
o Production Company
o Company Address
o Telephone Number
o Director’s Name
o Length in Minutes
o FilmFreeway Tracking Number

Please test your DVDs thoroughly before sending. Please avoid excessive packaging and the inclusion of any materials other than what are specified.
for those using Fedex DHL PUROLATER or any other mail system be sure to mark "non commercial use and a value of under $10.00 dollars


2 Reviews

Overall Rating
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    Sangita Iyer

    Thank you so very much from the bottom of my heart for organizing such a unique festival, in that, you thoughtfully structured the screenings and timings to suit various audiences. I for one, was deeply moved by the perfect audience you chose for my documentary Gods in Shackles – students, the future generation who we need to empower to protect our priceless natural treasures. Because of your dedication the theater was almost packed with brilliant students who had so many intelligent questions, I only wish the school had arranged a bit more time for the interactions. Naturally, they had to return for their afternoon classes, but still it was so much fun to connect with them for the brief time that I did.

    Commffest also went ahead and organized a wonderful award ceremony, served drinks and food so generously, offering a casual atmosphere to interact with other filmmakers and do some networking. These kinds of intimate interactions are difficult, if not impossible, in commercial film festivals that seem to be more concerned about profits and glitz and glamour, rather than the true purpose and meaning of a film festival – which is, to not only present films that provide entertainment, but also offer a platform for meaningful documentaries that matter at this critical time in our planet’s history. We are facing unprecedented socio-economic-ecological challenges and people seem to be disconnected from the root causes of these issues. And so, Commffest provided the platform that’s unavailable in other festivals.

    With the small team of volunteers and board members, including the wonderful Sandie de Freitas who basically did almost everything with the help of a couple of volunteers, and Norman Hart, who did a tremendous job as a photographer, I think Commffest was a grand success. My deepest gratitude to you from the depth of my soul for putting in your heart and soul, blood and sweat into producing this wonderful film festival.

    Onward and Upward!
    Yours sincerely,
    Sangita Iyer
    Executive Producer & Director
    Gods in Shackles

    October 2016
    Filmfrreway logo
    Response from festival:

    Thank you;
    Sangita, It was a pleasure working with you.

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    My film was accepted at this prestigious festival and I was honored. While I was unable to actually go to Toronto for my screening, I must say give this festival a multitude of stars for their incredible communication! Emails always answered, phone calls always returned. They are organized!

    October 2016
    Filmfrreway logo
    Response from festival:

    Thank you so very much for your response. It was a pleasure working with you.