SUBMISSIONS for 2022 are CLOSED!
Superfest showcases films that explore and celebrate disability as a creative and generative force in film and culture. We screen films for more than 500 people each year and host filmmakers from around the globe. Submit your film today to take part in this dynamic international event.
1) Films must be on the subject of disability, feature a prominent disabled character, OR be directed, written, and/or produced by a person with a disability.
2) Works must have been produced within the last 10 calendar years (since January 1st, 2012 for entry in Superfest 2022).
3) Entries for Superfest submitted on FilmFreeway on or before 11:59 PST on March 1st, 2022, with no exceptions.
Films must be submitted through a FilmFreeway.com account, the world’s #1 way to enter film festivals and creative contests.
Submissions will be accepted from November 15th, 2021 to March 1st, 2022.
PRICE OF SUBMISSION
Early bird submissions – $20, Deadline is January 20th
General submissions – $40, Deadline is March 1st
Shoe string budget (self-distributing and budget less than $10,000) – $20, deadline March 1st
Everyone involved in the Superfest judging process has a disability.
Superfest’s jury is made up of a diverse group of filmographers, disability rights advocates, scholars, community organizers, and award-winning creatives. The members of our jury watch the submissions and collaborate to choose Superfest’s diverse lineup and awards based on Superfest’s standards of artistry, portrayal of disability, and ingenuity.
If you are interested in being a juror for Superfest, please fill out the contact form and let us know.
Superfest’s awards honor not just brilliant filmmaking, but advocacy, humor, and the role disability plays in creating cinema.
BEST OF FESTIVAL, FEATURE
The most thought-provoking and impactful full-length feature film entered the festival.
BEST OF FESTIVAL, SHORT
The most outstanding short film entered the festival.
P.K. WALKER INNOVATION IN CRAFT AWARD
The film with the most innovative use of filmmaking techniques to encourage exploration of the experiences of people with disabilities. This award honors Pamela K. Walkers’s contributions to Superfest from 1998 to 2000.
This film best explores issues of concern to the disability community, which may have social, legal, technological, or political solutions.
DISABILITY JUSTICE AWARD
A film that explores intersectional topics and best conveys the relationship between disability and the unequal distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within a society.
LIANE YASUMOTO JURY’S CHOICE AWARD
Named for the former festival director Liane Yasumoto, this award is presented to the finalist deemed by the judges to be a singularly outstanding film that is not recognized in other award categories.
WHAT IS SUPERFEST?
Superfest Disability Film Festival is a juried festival held in the San Francisco Bay Area. It celebrates cutting-edge cinema that portrays disability culture in all its diverse, complex, and empowering facets. We celebrated 30 years of Superfest in 2016 and are proud to be the longest-running disability film festival in the world.
IS SUPERFEST ONLY FOR FILMMAKERS, WRITERS, OR PRODUCERS WITH DISABILITIES?
Not at all! If your film features disability, you are eligible to enter. The Disabled Filmmaker Award, however, is only open to filmmakers, writers, or producers who have a disability.
WHAT ARE MY CHANCES OF WINNING A SUPERFEST AWARD?
Your chances vary each year in relation to how many entries we receive, their quality, and the number of awards available.
The Superfest credo is “art takes risks” and therefore, judging criteria are calibrated to reward creativity more than production budgets. We are looking for memorable work that embodies artistry, technical competence, and content that advances disability culture.
WHO ARE THE JUDGES?
Our judging process takes place in two phases. Phase I judges, all people with disabilities, screen the submissions, and determine which films are eligible for the festival. Phase II judges are composed of film aficionados, disability studies scholars, and disability community organizers, who select the final line-up and awards. Every judge is a person with a disability. Learn more on the Judges & Staff page.
WHAT DO I RECEIVE FOR ENTERING SUPERFEST?
Selected films will be screened at the festival in the fall and at Superfest Showcases. Award winners receive a plaque and all filmmakers are eligible for discretionary funding to enable them to attend the festival. You will have the opportunity to participate in a filmmaker panel after your work is screened. You will receive recognition in communications to our 10,000-person mailing list, social media channels, and on the Superfest website.
HOW DID YOU DETERMINE YOUR FEE STRUCTURE?
We have tried to come up with a fee structure that accommodates independent, low-budget producers, but also helps in meeting our costs.
HOW DO I QUALIFY FOR A SHOESTRING BUDGET DISCOUNT ON FILM SUBMISSION?
We use the honor system. No formal application or budget needs to be submitted.
WHAT RIGHTS AM I SIGNING AWAY WHEN SIGNING THE CONTRACT RELEASE?
Superfest requires the selected filmmakers to sign a release form granting permission to show their film at the festival and to exhibit all or portions of their film at Superfest Showcases. Filmmakers are also required to provide captioning and audio descriptions for accessibility to the widest possible audience.
IF I ENTERED WORK BEFORE, CAN I ENTER THE SAME WORK AGAIN?
If you previously submitted a work to Superfest, you can enter the same work again, provided it meets the current entry guidelines for the year. However, if your film has already been screened at a prior Superfest, you are not eligible to resubmit.
I AM A LOW-INCOME FILMMAKER, DO YOU HAVE A SUBMISSION FEE?
Yes. Because we are a low-budget film festival, we are unable to completely waive the submission fee. However, we offer a $20 discount to shoestring productions with a budget of less than $10,000.
HOW CAN I SUBMIT MY FILM?
Through FilmFreeway, a safe and secure site that manages film festival submissions.
MY FILM ISN’T CAPTIONED OR AUDIO DESCRIBED, CAN I STILL SUBMIT?
Yes, you may submit. However, if your film is chosen, you will be required to provide an updated version with both audio description (for blind attendees) and captions (for Deaf and hard-of-hearing). Subtitles are required for all films that are not in English. Read here for more information on the audio description.
WHEN WILL I FIND OUT IF MY FILM HAS BEEN ACCEPTED?
Acceptances will be announced on June 1st of the year you apply to.
CAN I FIND OUT WHY MY FILM WAS REJECTED?
Judging decisions are final. However, all entrants are welcome to request evaluations of their work. Email [email protected] by September 30, 2022, to request your evaluations for 2022 submissions.