SOFF offers filmmakers the opportunity to have their films screen in the heart of Los Angeles for an audience that loves independent film. Founded by longtime residents and movie veterans alike, the Sherman Oaks Film Festival looks to showcase the best undiscovered movies available in a beautiful, state-of-the-art theater that features the highest quality projection with cushy leather recliners.

SOFF embraces the work of filmmakers from diverse backgrounds and communities. It is our philosophy to honor their work as filmmakers and not place their work in separate categories based on race, sexual orientation, or gender identification. We have been proud to honor films from every community as Official Selections and Award Winners, honoring their work as filmmakers without being balkanized as "Black filmmakers" or "LGBTQ filmmakers" or "Women filmmakers." At SOFF, all of our filmmakers are filmmakers and we honor them equally.

Podcast + TV Series + Streaming Service
SOFF head programmer Jeff Howard established the "Discover Indie Film" podcast in 2017 and has had over 200 filmmakers sit for an in depth interview. In 2019 the TV series "Discover Indie Film" premiered on Amazon Prime Video; DIF TV is an anthology of shorts handpicked from the festival circuit. In 2023, Jeff launched TVHi, a streaming app available on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, iPhone and Android Mobile. Becoming a SOFF Official Selection affords you the opportunity to take part in any of these things, but participation is never required.

The Sherman Oaks Film Festival is proud of the Hollywood professionals who comprise our Board:

Michael Lynn : Television Producer (True Hollywood Stories)
Jamie Ball : Television Executive (Disney Channel)
Zac Reeder : Entertainment Executive (Head of Domestic Distribution at Electric Entertainment)
Shannon Makhanian: Casting Director (The Brothers Bloom, Unknown, Mysterious Skin)
Glen Reynolds: Producer/Manager (Conversations with Other Women, Night Train)

GRAND JURY PRIZES (chosen by selection jury)
Best Feature Film - Arthouse/Experimental
Best Feature Film - Comedy
Best Feature Film - Documentary
Best Feature Film - Drama
Best Feature Film - Horror
Best Feature Film - SciFi
Best Featurette - Arthouse/Experimental
Best Featurette - Comedy
Best Featurette - Documentary
Best Featurette - Drama
Best Featurette - Horror
Best Featurette - SciFi
Best Short Film - Arthouse/Experimental
Best Short Film - Comedy
Best Short Film - Dance
Best Short Film - Documentary
Best Short Film - Drama
Best Short Film - Horror
Best Short Film - SciFi
Best Music Video
Best Director, Feature Film
Best Director, Featurette
Best Director, Short Film
Best Actress in a Lead Role
Best Actor in a Lead Role
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Best Performance by a Full Cast
Best Screenplay
Best Cinematography
Best Art Direction
Best Screenplay, Feature Film (Unproduced)
Best Screenplay, Short Film (Unproduced)
Best Screenplay, TV Pilot/Web Series (Unproduced)

AUDIENCE AWARDS (audience selections)
Audience Award, Feature Film
Audience Award, Featurette
Audience Award, Short Film
Audience Award, Documentary Film

FILMMAKERS AWARDS (Jury of filmmakers from past festivals)
Outstanding Short Films
Outstanding Directors
Outstanding Screenplays
Outstanding Acting, Cast
Outstanding Acting, Individuals
Outstanding Cinematography

Sexiest Film of the Fest
Uniquely Original Filmmaking


Technical Requirements:
Video - DCPs are required for all theatrical screenings. SOFF has a technical sponsor who assists in this process.
Audio - A volume level of -20 LUFS to -18 LUFS during dialog scenes is highly recommended. Your editor should be able to give you an output in this range before you create your DCP.

The makers of each project are welcome to be part of a Q&A session immediately following their screening. Key cast and crew are also welcome to participate.

Participants agree that their project and material related to their project may be used and/or published in the Sherman Oaks Film Festival program, website and for promotional purposes related to the Sherman Oaks Film Festival.

Submission materials:
Film, video and script submissions are only accepted digitally through FilmFreeway. No physical media or scripts will be accepted at the festival's office address.

If selected, all commercial/private property including all trademark/copyrighted materials shown or recorded on the project is the responsibility of the filmmaker. The festival does not take responsibility for any infringement of copywritten materials.

Rules are subject to change at any time without prior notice.

Run Times & Page Limits:

Feature Films: run time over 60 minutes
Featurettes: run time between 60 and 20 minutes
Short Films: run time under 20 minutes
Music Videos: any length
Screenplays: no page minimum or maximum, standard format and standard title page recommended. Movie and Television screenplays are both accepted.

Overall Rating
  • Pirie Martin

    It was an absolute pleasure to be part of the 2023 festival, unfortunately I was unable to attend in person, but I had a fantastic chat with Jeff Howard in a virtual Q&A which made it feel less remote. I definitely appreciate the expertise, passion and dedication from the SOFF team running the festival!

    January 2024
  • This is a great fest! The screening venue is soooo clutch - a big, proper movie theater with a giant screen and beautiful projection, plus delicious food and drink. The fest provides really fun red carpet and interview opportunities, and the festival director is charming and friendly and knowledgeable... Which leads to great Q&As. The programming is cool, you'll WANT to meet the other filmmakers, and you'll have opportunities to do it at the opening/closing mixers. It's great!

    December 2023
  • Piripboi Entertainment

    it was a beautiful expirience and I feel so honored to have been a part of this.

    December 2023
  • Skylar Adams

    I love this festival! It was such a treat to see our film on the big screen. It's a beautiful venue, there are lots of great opportunities to meet other filmmakers, and so many fantastic movies! Thank you for selecting Long Beach Vice!

    December 2023
  • Christian Shapiro

    This festival made us all feel so special! Everyone on the team, from Red Carpet hosts to ticket scanners, watched every film of the festival program and knew momentarily what film you were representing. The Q&As ran even longer than the screenings, with each movie getting its independent Q&A! And the venue was just fantastic! So luxurious! I also enjoyed their Virtual festival, with some new films and films from the theatrical screenings.

    December 2023