48th Annual

USA Film Festival

April 25, 2018 to April 29, 2018

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6116 North Central Expressway
Suite 105
Dallas TX 75206
Phone: 214-821-6300
Fax: 214-821-6364

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International Short Film & Video Competition
The USA Film Festival’s 40th Annual International Short Film & Video Competition is a major showcase for new and significant American work. Entries are judged by a nationally-renowned Jury of filmmakers, critics and scholars, who award prizes based on originality of concept, style and technical execution.

Professional and nonprofessional film and video-makers may enter. All entries must be submitted in the completed form in which they will by judged.

The Festival is committed to filmmakers working in the short format. To date, the Festival has awarded more than $250,000 in filmmaker cash prizes, including honors to many then unknown filmmakers, including Jessica Yu, Todd Haynes, Alexander Payne, George Hickenlooper, Alan Taylor, Danny Leiner and John Lasseter.

The competition is a highlight program of the Annual USA Film Festival Spring Festival, a curated event showcasing new features and shorts, master artist tributes, retrospectives and other special programs – all with filmmakers in attendance to present their works.
Feature Submissions
The USA Film Festival is a major showcase for new and significant American and foreign work. Only about 20 feature-length films are selected for exhibition in the curated event. Accepted films are typically screened only one time.


The 48-year old USA Film Festival is a Dallas-based, 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to the encouragement and recognition of excellence in the film and video arts. Through its YEAR-ROUND "live cinema" programs and special events, the USA Film Festival provides an opportunity for the public to discover new films and sheds new light on familiar films by facilitating discussion and encounters with master, mid-career and emerging filmmakers. Programs include a major annual film festival, now in its 48th year; the international short film competition; the annual KidFilm festival, the oldest and largest-attended children's film festival in the U.S.; tributes and retrospectives organized around important themes and filmmakers; and extensive educational community outreach activities. With the exception of special member screenings, all events are open to the public.


This year's programs will include:

48th Annual USA Film Festival
April 2018
A curated event featuring only the best new features & shorts; U.S. and foreign films; Tributes to master artists; International Short Film & Video Competition with cash awards administered by national jury. Filmmakers present their works and discuss them with the audience; Filmmakers selected receive air travel and lodging; Nightly receptions honoring filmmaker guests; Publicist provided for all films.

34th Annual KidFilm Festival
January 20-21, 2018
Featuring the best new and classic films (features and shorts) from around the world for audiences of all ages. Artists who have made outstanding contributions to the field are honored each year. Receptions honoring filmmaker guests; Publicist provided for all films.

Meet the Filmmakers
Monthly screenings of new independent and studio films with filmmaker guests in attendance to present the work and talk with the audience.

Master Artist Tributes
Tributes & retrospectives honoring master artists including directors, actors, screenwriters, cinematographers, composers, art directors, editors and more.

Since its inception in 1971, the USA Film Festival has presented the world, national or regional premieres of thousands of studio and independent feature films and short experimental, animated, documentary and dramatic films. The eye-popping roster of filmmaker guests numbers in the thousands and is too long to list in total, but includes ACTORS Kevin Spacey, Benjamin Bratt, Brian Cox, Thomas Haden Church, M. Emment Walsh, Chris Cooper, Peter Fonda, John Turturro, Andy Garcia, Dakota Fanning, Anthony Hopkins, Gary Oldman, Alfred Molina, Christopher Walken, Tommy Lee Jones, James Earl Jones, Jimmy Smits, Jodie Foster, Marcia Gay Harden, Richard Dreyfuss, Audrey Hepburn, Dennis Hopper, James Stewart, Robert Duvall, Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine, Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Gregory Peck, Jackie Chan, Derek Jacobi, Ian McKellen, Richard E. Grant, Josh Lucas, Wanda Sykes, Martin Short, Charles Durning, Stephen Tobolowsky, Harry Shearer, Dennis Quaid, Gregory Hines, Terry Jones, Ray Liotta; SCREENWRITERS/WRITERS George Axelrod, Robert Towne, Buck Henry; James V. Hart, Paul Rudnick, Diane Baker, and Rene Auberjonois; EFFECTS WIZARDS Dennis Muren; VOICE ARTISTS June Foray, Will Ryan; ANIMATORS Frank Thomas, Ollie Johnston, Michael Sporn, John Dilworth, Don Bluth, Gary Goldman, Ray Harryhausen, Henry Selick; AUTHORS John Grisham, Kimberly Willis Holt, Cari Best, Rosemary Wells, Richard Condon, John Boyne, Dominick Dunne; PRODUCERS Bernie Brillstein, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Jerry Bruckheimer, Polly Platt, Christine Vachon; COMPOSERS Mark Mothersbaugh, Quincy Jones, Elmer Bernstein, Hans Zimmer, Paul Williams; EDITORS Dede Allen; Dennis Virkler; CINEMATOGRAPHERS Owen Roizman, Conrad Hall, Laszlo Kovacs; ART DIRECTORS Henry Bumstead, Richard Sylbert; CRITICS/FILM WRITERS Roger Ebert, Leonard Maltin, Mike Clarke, Stephen Rebello; DIRECTORS Milos Forman, Danny Boyle, Mark Herman, Neil LaBute, Ken Russell, Ismail Merchant & James Ivory, Albert Maysles, Peter Greenaway, Blake Edwards, Robert Benton, Michael Apted, Wim Wenders, Norman Jewison, Arthur Penn, Alan J. Pakula, Paul Mazursky, Sydney Pollack, Stanley Donen, Paul Schrader, Martha Coolidge, Mel Stuart, John Waters, Andy Warhol, Charles Burnett, Budd Boetticher, Robert Altman, Oliver Stone, Atom Egoyan, John Frankenheimer, Martin Ritt, Alan Rudolph, Michael Powell, Chuck Jones, Richard Brooks, Frederick Wiseman, John Cassavetes, Frank Perry, Peter Bogdanovich, Robert Wise, Rouben Mamoulian, Sidney Lumet, George Cukor, King Vidor, Mervyn LeRoy, William Wyler, Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Raoul Walsh, Frank Capra, George Stevens, Whit Stillman, Ira Sachs, and many more.


Ann Alexander (Managing Director); Tori Collatos (Program Coordinator)


Running time is calculated by timing the head frame to the last frame on the end credits.

Any physical screener must be POSTMARKED by the deadline date, and will not be returned.

The appropriate entry fee must accompany each entry. This nonrefundable fee covers screening and handling costs.

Specify only ONE MAIN CATEGORY (Fiction, Non-Fiction, Animation, Experimental) for your film to be in.

Films or videos using non-licensed, copyrighted musical or literary properties without legal permission are not eligible.

Eligible finished formats include 70mm, 16mm and 35mm film, IMAX, HDCAM, DV/DVCAM, DCI, DVD, BetaSP, DigiBeta, and Blu-Ray. (It is understood that there exists a multitude of shooting formats for video production.)

Screener DVDs must be technically fit for projection and should be placed in sturdy shipping cases. Each DVD must be clearly marked with the title and the entrant's name and email address.

The festival is open to professional and nonprofessional filmmakers.


I hereby certify that I am authorized to submit this production to the USA Film Festival Dallas as stated in the Call for Entries rules. I hereby release the Festival from all responsibility and liability for loss or damage.

USA Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.