The Lower East Side Film Festival aims to create a special experience for both filmmaker and audience through amazing events, neighborhood engagement, free industry panels, awesome screenings, and the best and brightest up and coming filmmaking talent.

Post-Fest, The Lower East Side Film Festival works with our in-house Sales Agent to try and secure distribution for our screened Features, Shorts, and Music Videos.


In 2022, LESFF also launched the Stay Indie Project - a fellowship program devoted to developing feature documentary and narrative micro-budget indie films with an opportunity to receive up to 400K in financing, as well as a creative partnership with LESFF's production company, BFD Productions.

The Lower East Side Film Festival will award films in the following categories:

Best Feature Film
Best Live Action Short Film
Best Animated Short Film
Best Documentary Short Film
Best Music Video
LESFF Audience Award
LESFF Neighborhood Award
Best of Fest – The LESFF Prix D’Or

I. Certification of Film Entrant: A. I, the undersigned, acknowledge and agree as follows: B. I have read, understand and fully comply with all submission eligibility information, Submission Guidelines, Terms and Conditions of Entry and Entry Eligibility requirements; C. To the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in this document are true; D. The Feature, Short, Documentary, or Other Media I am submitting as my entry is not subject to any litigation nor is threatened by any litigation; E. I am duly authorized to submit this Production to the Festival; F. I hold The LES Film Festival harmless from any damage to the print(s) or tape(s) or media en route or otherwise during the course of the Festival; G. I hold the LES Film Festival harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from my entry; H. I certify that I have full rights to the use of the music in the Production; I. I give permission for the LES Film Festival to use excerpts of up to three minutes of the Production for promotional purposes; J. I give permission for the LES Film Festival to use stills, titles, copy, and/or information from the Production for promotional purposes; K. I give permission for the LES Film Festival to screen the Production at the LES Film Festival event as well as at ancillary Festival presentations, programs, and/or events; L. I own or have authorization to all necessary copyrights and licenses; (If requested) will be able to provide model/actor release verification if requested; will be able to provide music, product and other copyright licensing verification if requested. As the Submitter/Producer, I agree to take on all copyright liability in regard to submitted film. M. Entry does not guarantee acceptance into LES Film Festival or other LES Film Festival Events.
II. Film Submissions A. SUBMISSION FORMAT: All Festival submissions should be sent via a Web Link. B. SUBMISSION LENGTH AND GENRE: we accept all forms and genres that would be deemed within a G, PG, PG-13, R, or NC-17. (1) Short form submissions are those under forty-five (45) minutes. (2) Long form (feature length) submissions are those forty-five (45) minutes and over in length C. Submissions WILL NOT be returned. D. MULTIPLE ENTRIES are allowed, however a separate entry form and fee shall be submitted for each. E. 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 music, product and other copyright licensing verification if requested. Producer agrees to take on all copyright liability in regard to submitted film. F. SUBMISSION DEADLINES: Submissions with postmarks prior to and after these will not qualify for entry into the Festival. G. ENTRY FEES: 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 LES Film Festival. H. PREMIERE/DISTRIBUTION STATUS: We accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere; submissions may have distribution agreements already in place. I. LOSS OR DAMAGE: Every precaution will be taken to prevent damage to materials while in the possession of the Festival. J. LES FILM FESTIVAL MARKETING: By submitting, Producer is consenting for use and copying of accepted projects for the purpose of promoting the LES Film Festival. Producer is giving LES Film Festival permission to use up to three minutes of submission to promote the Festival. K. LES FILM FESTIVAL EXHIBITION AND SCREENING: By submitting, if chosen as an official selection, Producer is hereby granting permission for the LES Film Festival to exhibit Producer’s submission in the LES Film Festival Event. III. General Waiver Guidelines A. General. By entering this Contest, entrants agree to abide by the terms of these Official Rules, which are final and binding on all matters pertaining to this Festival. All federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply. B. By entering the Festival, entrants release, waive any claims with regard to, and hold harmless the promoter and the host from and against any and all claims of any kind that are or could be asserted with respect to any matter relating to the festival. Entrants further agree to indemnify, defend and hold the promoter and host harmless from any and all damages, liabilities, fees and cost incurred in defending against any third party claims or threats of claims asserted against promoter and/or host arising from any entrant’s participation in or conduct associated with the Festival. C. Nonperformance of any party shall be excused to the extent that performance is rendered impossible by strike, fire, flood, earthquakes, war, governmental acts or orders or restrictions, or any other reason where failure to perform is beyond the reasonable control, and not caused by the negligence of, the nonperforming party. Governing Law and Waiver of Damages. The Festival and these Official Rules are governed by and shall be construed in accordance with the laws of the State of New York, United States of America, without regards to its principles of conflicts of law. For any dispute not subject to arbitration according to the above, entrant agrees to personal jurisdiction by the federal and state courts located in New York County, New York, United States of America, and waives any jurisdictional, venue, or inconvenient forum objections to such courts. D. Further, in any such dispute, under no circumstances will entrant be permitted to obtain awards for, and hereby irrevocably waives all rights to claim, punitive, incidental, or consequential damages, or any other damages, including attorneys’ fees, other than participant’s actual out-of-pocket expenses (i.e., costs associated with participating in the Contest), and entrant further irrevocably waives all rights to have damages multiplied or increased. E. Privacy. Information submitted in connection with the Contest will be treated in accordance with these Official Rules and the Site’s Privacy Policy, provided that in the event of any conflict between these Official Rules and such Privacy Policy, the terms and conditions of these Official Rules shall prevail. All Contestants and Team Members hereby acknowledge and agree that Promoter will have access to some or all of their personally identifiable information, including but not limited to registration information collected by the Host.

Overall Rating
  • Anna Andersen

    What a wonderful festival! Having the chance to premiere our short film, The Promise of Spring, at the iconic Angelika has to be one of the highlights of my filmmaking career. Thank you LESFF for a wild ride!

    May 2023
  • Hiran Balasuriya

    We were very fortunate enough to have our first NYC screening with the Lower East Side Festival, and they absolutely did not disappoint with the level of care and love they gave our premiere. We screened at DCTV's Firehouse Cinema, and the quality of the presentation was amazing, most definitely the best our film has enjoyed so far. Roxy and her festival staff are incredible, friendly and supportive. Really looking forward to being able to screen with LESFF in the future!

    May 2023
  • love you guys! The best!

    August 2022
  • Annie Tippe

    This festival was FANTASTIC. The programming was thrilling, with lots of different kinds of work and different artists represented. Very organized and thoughtful. I would highly recommend this, especially if NYC if your hometown, so you can share your movie with friends and family in person!

    July 2022
  • Izzi Rassouli

    It was such an honor to be selected by LESFF! Seeing our film on the big screen for the very first time at the historic Village East Cinema was a dream come true. All of festival organizers and other filmmakers were all passionate, gracious, and supportive. To be included alongside such beautiful and meaningful films was such a compliment! An absolute dreamlike experience of a lifetime- Thank you so much, LEFF!!

    August 2021