Welcome to the Zion International Film Festival, where we celebrate the essence of independent cinema—stories of redemption, beauty, hope, creativity, and the human experience.

Our festival is open to submissions from filmmakers across ALL genres: whether it's fantasy, comedy, sci-fi, animated, horror, or family-friendly—no genre is off-limits! And if your film defies standard genre barriers, we want to see it!

But ZIFF isn't just about showcasing exceptional films; it's about creating an unforgettable experience. Join us for an array of immersive activities and events that you can only find in Tacoma and the Pacific Northwest. Our festival is carefully curated to foster genuine connections in an environment that's refreshingly down-to-earth. Get ready to forge meaningful relationships and engage in enriching conversations with industry professionals, fellow filmmakers, and your audience like never before.

ZIFF is helmed by a veteran film festival director and programmer whose work has earned accolades from publications like MovieMaker and Filmmaker Magazine.

Submit your film to ZIFF and be part of a celebration that transcends boundaries and embraces the diverse tapestry of independent cinema. We can't wait to experience your film!

Best Narrative Feature - $750
Best Documentary Feature - $750
Best Narrative Short - $250
Best Documentary Short - $250

Audience Choice Awards
Audience Choice, Feature
Audience Choice, Short

All awards except Audience Choice are decided by a jury composed of filmmakers, film programmers, critics, and/or industry professionals.



1. Submission Deadline Structure
Submissions Open: 15 July, 2024
Early Deadline: 10 September, 2024
Regular Deadline: 09 December, 2024
Late Deadline: 06 January, 2025
Extended Deadline: 03 February, 2025

2. Submission Format
Films must be submitted via a secure online screener or via FilmFreeway online screening portal only.

3. Submission Eligibility
All submissions must have been completed after January 1, 2023.

4. Premiere Status
No premiere status is required, but US Premiere status is preferred. Must not be available to stream, purchase, or rent online before June 20, 2025.

5. Selection of Films
The Zion International Film Festival will complete the selection process by August 4, 2023, and will contact all submitting parties by email with programming status at that time. Accepted films will receive a Filmmaker Welcome Packet via email that will include important information about DCP exhibition, “Host a Filmmaker” lodging program, press and publicity, guest accreditation, festival filmmaker liaison contact information, and how to make the most of participation in the festival.

- The accepted film must be received by the Zion International Film Festival by 10/10/2022 to be played at the Zion International Film Festival, 2-5 November, 2023.

- The submitter is responsible for shipping or uploading the exhibition copy to the Zion International Film Festival. TFF will pay domestic ground shipping only to return exhibition copies if applicable (no overnight or express). Non-ground or international shipping must be paid for by the filmmaker.

6. DCP is required for features and shorts
DCP (Digital Cinema Package). Shorts must supply DCP and 1080p downloadable file backup, and features must supply a DCP and either 1080p downloadable file or Blu-ray backup.

7. Screening and Scheduling
The festival aspires to provide the best quality projection possible but will not be held liable for any failure in the technical quality of the projection, nor will fees be refunded in any such case. The Zion International Film Festival assumes that the submitting party or filmmaker(s) or entrant(s) or print source company has been insured for damage and loss of the festival print or hard drive.

Screenings are scheduled during the festival at the discretion of the Zion International Film Festival. The Zion International Film Festival also retains the right to run limited Press & Industry screenings the week leading up to the festival.

Festival Promotion
Should your film be programmed, very brief portions of your submitted material may be copied and utilized for the purpose of promoting your film. Upon submission, filmmakers grant the Zion International Film Festival the right to use clips and press materials from the film for promotional purposes unless the filmmaker requests otherwise in writing.

- Films do not have to be biblical in nature but should reflect biblical values and core Christian doctrines. The Zion International Film Festival reserves the right to disqualify submissions that contain purposeless profanity and/or depict nudity, sexual acts, or gratuitous violence/gore. 

- Please make a note in your submission if you have any connections to the Pacific Northwest region.

- Entry fees are waived for films made in Washington and/or for Directors currently residing in Washington State. Please email us at info@zionfilmfest.com.

- Returning ZIFF alumni filmmakers’ entry fees are waived. To request a waiver, please include the film title and year it played and email us at info@zionfilmfest.com.

- Works in progress will automatically be disqualified.

- Industrials, promotional, or news report films will not be considered if submitted.

- Entry fees will not be refunded.

We provide waivers and/or discounts to the following:

ZIFF Alumni - if you’ve screened at ZIFF in the past, we will waive the submission fee.

Pacific Northwest Filmmakers - if your film was made in the State of Washington, you may be eligible for a waiver.

Student Discount - we provide a $10 discount for students or student works on presentation of current student ID or proof of enrollment during production of your film.

We do not provide waivers for any other types of submissions.

No phone inquiries, please.

Please email us with questions: info@zionfilmfest.com.

Thank you!

If a film obtains distribution after submission, ZIFF will have the right to screen the film at the festival without a screening fee. ZIFF will place any such film in its respective category for competition.

By entering the Zion International Film Festival, entrants release and hold the promoter and host and other contest entities harmless from and against any and all losses, damages, rights, claims, and action of any kind arising in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from the festival. The Festival will handle the films with care but cannot be held liable for any damage or loss during the shipping, preview, or screening. The Festival is not responsible for any claim involving copyright, trademark or royalty infringements related to the work. Applicants are responsible for their own insurance and are not covered by the festival’s insurance.

On submission, the filmmaker grants The Festival the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

The individual or corporation submitting the film warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations.

The submitting filmmaker shall indemnify, defend, and hold harmless The Festival from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney’s fees, expert witness fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.

Overall Rating
  • Jessica Sison

    I was honored to have my film "The Elevator Dance (For Elisa) Remix" screen at the Zion International Film Festival. Their lead programmer always selects high quality, thought-provoking and inspirational films.

    January 2024
  • Daniel Swinton

    Although I was unable to attend the festival in person I was delighted to have my film showcased in such a setting. The organizers were wonderful and I appreciate the opportunity!

    November 2023
  • Brian Steele

    Highly recommend this festival! I wasn't able to attend (bummer), but the festival directors and programmers are great communicators, and are doing something truly unique in the film fest world. Plus we won best narrative short! Thanks again Zion IFF team.

    October 2022
  • Eric Frost-Barnes

    Zion Int. Film Festival was fantastic! It is small, but the people running it are terrific in their attitudes and how they're running the festival. Also, the quality of films - both in our specific block and overall - were really strong. They curated blocks with themes and chose well made and well acted films. We travelled to the festival and everyone was really lovely; made us feel like we belonged. We very much hope to showcase another short film there in the near future.

    October 2022
  • Devin Hermanson

    A great festival put on by great people. It's such an important niche - a broader, more inclusive faith oriented festival. I know it will thrive.

    We had a blast meeting great people and screening our short film, KADE. We'll be back - if we're invited.

    October 2022