More Voices. More Stories.

The Huntington Beach Film Festival has award winning movies and screenplays, industry speakers, workshops, Q&As, a distinguished panel of jury members and screeners, volunteer opportunities and scores of film watching attendees.

Our mission is to bring the best of independent cinema to our community and promote diversity, tolerance and understanding.

The 14th Annual Huntington Beach Film Festival will take place May, 2019. Selected films will be announced on April 1st, 2019.

What we're looking for:

Any genre, any length, narrative or documentary.

Any budget, no budget. We value story over production value.

We love finding authentic voices and we love great writing.

We’re committed to discovering and promoting the work of women and minority filmmakers, and filmmakers from other under-represented groups, such as the LGBT+ community, or indigenous filmmakers from all over the world.

Social-issue films are needed now more than ever.

Subversion is very cool. We like challenging authority.

Local Huntington Beach and Orange County filmmakers are especially encouraged to submit. We want to support you.

Student filmmakers, especially locals, are also encouraged to submit. You’re the future and we want to see your work.

Filmmakers with stories about senior issues are especially encouraged to submit.

And finally, we’re in Huntington Beach, CA, also known as Surf City USA! We’d love to see films about surfing, as well as films about the ocean and the environment.

Festival alumni should shoot us an email to receive a 25% submission discount! Members of the International Screenwriters' Association also receive a discounted rate!

We can’t wait to see your work!

"As festivals go, think of it as the equivalent of a Robert Altman ensemble picture: plenty of stars getting equal treatment and no one towering as a headliner over the rest." Michael Miller, LA Times

" Every year for a decade now, the festival has delivered music videos, short films, animation, features and documentaries. This event is the perfect combination of good people, good films ..." -Paul Booth, INFLUX Magazine

"Time flies when you're watching a well-made film, and time has flown for a now 10-year-old Huntington Beach festival that specializes in indie flicks and the people who make them." -Matt Coker, OC Weekly

"Throughout the years I really enjoyed the diverse and compelling films," Jason Kartalian, Filmmaker, Seahorses


InkTip: Where everyone goes for scripts and writers. Producers have made more than 200 films from scripts and writers they found through InkTip.

Winners of the Screenplay Long From and Screenplay Short Form categories will receive an InkTip Script Listing: A listing of your script on InkTip so that producers and reps can find you.

Final Draft

We are happy to announce that Final Draft Screenwriting Software will join us once again as a 2018 sponsor! We'll be giving away five copies of the industry standard screenwriting software.


We’re very pleased to announce that we’re partnering with the International Screenwriters’ Association. If you’re a member of this great organization, you get a discounted rate on your submissions to HBFF.

The ISA is an International Community that supports writers with the resources and prospects that can propel your career! They provide screenwriters access to Agents, Managers, Producers & Directors

Other awards include theatrical screenings, distributor previews, media reviews and more. Awards and prizes vary from year to year depending on final event sponsorship.


I. Certification of Film or Screenplay Entrant
II. Film Submissions
III. Screenplay Submissions
IV. General Waiver Rules and Guidelines

II. Certification of Film or Screenplay Entrant:

I, the undersigned, acknowledge and agree as follows:

1. I have read, understand and fully comply with all submission eligibility information, Submission Guidelines, Terms and Conditions of Entry and Entry Eligibility requirements.

2. To the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in this document are true;

3. This production (feature, short, documentary, or other media) is not subject to any litigation nor is threatened by any litigation;

4. I am duly authorized to submit this production to the competition;

5. I hold The Huntington Beach Film Festival (HBFF) harmless from any damage to the print(s) or tape(s) or media en route or otherwise during the course of the festivals possession of the film;

6. I hold the Huntington Beach Film Festival (HBFF), its management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, and etc. harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from my entry.

7. I certify that I have full rights to the use of the music in the production.

8. I give permission for the HBFF to use excerpts of up to three minutes of the production for promotional purposes, unless otherwise noted in attached writing and submitted with entry.

9. I give permission for the HBFF to use stills, titles, copy, and/or information from the production for promotional purposes.

10. I give permission for the HBFF to screen the production at the HBFF event.

11. Submitter must own all copyrights; (If requested) must be able to provide model/actor release verification if requested; must be able to provide music, product and other copyright licensing verification if requested. Submitter/Producer agrees to take on all copyright liability in regard to submitted film.

12. I give my permission for the HBFF to share my film and contact information with HBFF festival partners unless I specify otherwise.

13. Entry does not guarantee acceptance into HBFF festival or other HBFF events.


1. SUBMISSION FORMAT: All Festival submissions should be submitted through FilmFreeway as an online screener.

2. SUBMISSION LENGTH AND GENRE: The HBFF is open genre; meaning we accept all forms and genres that would be deemed within a G, PG, PG-13, R, or NC-17 rating by HBFF staff. We do not accept pornographic entertainment. Short form submissions are under forty (40) minutes. Long form (feature length) submissions are forty (40) minutes and over.

3. Submissions WILL NOT be returned.

4. MULTIPLE ENTRIES are allowed.

5. PRODUCER / FILMMAKER / COPYRIGHTS: submitter (filmmaker or producer) will be referred to as producer or submitter. Producer must own all copyrights; must be able to provide model/actor release verification if requested; must be able to provide music, product and other copyright licensing verification if requested. Producer agrees to take on all copyright liability in regard to submitted film.

6. SUBMISSION DEADLINES: Entrants are expect to enter by the deadline with assets (including screening copy and fees) to be received within 5 business days following the deadline.

7. ENTRY FEES: View the "Call for Entries" to note fees and deadlines. Entry fees are non-refundable. If your entry fee is not received with or prior to your submission, your entry may be deemed disqualified at the discretion of the HBFF.

8. ORIGINATING FORMAT: Film, digital and new media originating formats are accepted for submission.

9. PRESENTATION FORMAT: If accepted into the HBFF, producers must be able to provide a file for digital presentation. Other formats may be permitted.

10. DATE OF COMPLETION: Not specified.

11. PREMIERE/DISTRIBUTION STATUS: We accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere; submissions may have distribution agreements already in place. However, TV, theatrical, video, cable, pay-per-view, other festival, or other distribution outlets that run concurrently or in the same month of the festival may not be eligible for screening. Decisions made at HBFF discretion.

12. LOSS OR DAMAGE: Every precaution will be taken to prevent or loss or damage to materials while in the possession of the festival. However, Producer agrees to release the HBFF from responsibility should any materials be damaged while in transit to or from, or while in the possession of the HBFF.

13. ROUGH CUTS AND INCOMPLETE PROJECTS: Always try to send the best representation of your project. Rough cuts can be entered in contest, but must be completed and received with four weeks of festival start date.

14. HBFF MARKETING: By submitting producer is consenting for use and copying of accepted projects for the purpose of promoting the Huntington Beach Film Festival and future festivals. Producer is giving HBFF permission to use up to three minutes of submission to promote the festival.

15a. HBFF EXHIBITION AND SCREENING: By submitting to the festival, if chosen as an official selection, Producer is hereby granting permission for the HBFF to exhibit Producer's submission in the festival event.

15b. HBFF EXHIBITION AND SCREENING: By submitting, Producer acknowledges that the number of films the festival selects and exhibits may vary from year-to-year based on, but not limited to, total number of entries, quality of entries, final sponsorship revenue, and venue availability. Decisions are final and at the discretion of the HBFF.

15c. HBFF EXHIBITION AND SCREENING: Producer further understands that there is no monetary compensation for entering, exhibiting or being chosen as an official selection to the festival.

16. SCREENERS AND JURY: All screening, selection, and jury decisions are final. Our panel of jurors and our screening committee use a rating system on entries and official selections. They screen many fine films; however, as with all festivals there is limited programming availability. By entering the HBFF and any of its contests, Producers are verifying that you understand entry does not guarantee a screening. Additionally, being chosen as an Official Selection does not guarantee a screening in the theater either. The HBFF may have Official Selections (non-screening) as well as Official Selections (screening). Decisions are final and at the discretion of the HBFF.

17. OFFICIAL SELECTIONS: If chosen as an official selection, the HBFF will request acknowledgment of your acceptance and additional materials. If any of the requested materials are not received by the festival in the time allotted, it is at the discretion of the festival to keep or remove the project as an Official Selection.

18. QUALIFIERS: Entrants must adhere to the category requirements as outlined on the website.

III. SCREENPLAYS (any length)

1. Eligibility:
a. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter this competition.
b. entered script must not be or previously been optioned, sold, or produced by a studio on a large budget. We do accept scripts that have been produced if the writer was involved in making an independent production. Projects in question will be deemed eligible at the discretion of the HBFF.

2. Rules:
a. Any genre can be entered.
b. Screenplay must be original work of the author or authors.
c. Multiple authorship is allowed.
d. Multiple entries are allowed, but each entry must be accompanied by their own completed entry form and their own appropriate entry fee. You are allowed to mail them to us in one package.
e. No corrected pages or additional pages will be accepted after the screenplay has been entered. PLEASE be sure you double check your screenplay for errors, blank pages, etc., before mailing them to us.

3. Script Guidelines:
a. Submitted Scripts MUST be in English.
b. Do not send originals as scripts will not be returned.
c. Printed Scripts must be in industry standard format and bound with 2 or 3 brads.
d. Body pages must be correctly numbered.
e. Script title page should clearly provide the title of the screenplay and the FilmFreeway Tracking Number. Writer's name is optional.
f. Must be on white paper.
g. Covers must be card stock.
h. We do accept and prefer .PDF, Microsoft Word and TEXT documents. Electronic submission in one of these formats is required.
i. Script Length: Any
j. Failure to comply with the guidelines, rules, regulations, or eligibility may be cause for disqualification.

For Complete and Current Rules, please visit as it is the expectation that all entrants adhere to the most recent set of rules and terms as posted on our website.

Overall Rating
  • Mike Kobzeff

    Guy and Alexandra put on a successful festival I am proud to be a part of.
    The venue was outstanding. The sound and picture quality were great.
    There were easily 100+ people for the screening of my short which played in the locals block.

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks, Mike! It was great to meet you (and your dad!) and we're so glad you enjoyed the fest! Hope to see you next year!

  • Eileen O'Meara

    Great festival!
    Guy, Alex, and the whole team were very welcoming.
    The films they selected were varied, international, and really interesting.
    The short film blocks were only about an hour long—so it wasn’t exhausting to attend multiple screenings.
    Highly recommend!

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks very much, Eileen! We loved having your film PANIC ATTACK! in our fest. Keep in touch and looking forward to your next film!

  • Trent McGee

    This was my first time going to the HB Festival and it was great!!!

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks so much, Trent! We loved having you and your film--hope to see you next year!

  • Chris Gierowski

    Really fun fest. The tram puts their hearts and souls into it. They are very nice and accommodating. And they really love films. The blocks were entertaining and we had a great time. Can't wait to submit our next project!

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    And we can't wait to see your next project! Really enjoyed meeting all of you and so glad you had a good time. Thanks so much!

  • Luke Cameron

    Even though we were unable to make it to the festival, the communication was amazing and they were very open about helping us do marketing there. Thanks again HBFF!

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks so much, Luke! We're thrilled to have THE WAY as part of our fest!