42nd Annual

Margaret Mead Film Festival

October 18, 2018 to October 21, 2018

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Submit Online
Central Park West @ 79th Street
New York NY 10024
Phone: 212-769-5305
Fax: 212-769-5329

SPECIAL SUBMISSIONS ONLY • Final deadlines have passed. If you have a deadline waiver or special instructions from the event, select a Category of Entry to continue.

Any form of non-fiction work.
All animation must be non-fiction based.
experimental non-fiction
Any experimental works with significant non-fiction elements.
new media non-fiction


The American Museum of Natural History’s Margaret Mead Film Festival is presented by the Museum’s Public Programs Division in the Department of Education. Held annually each Fall, the Festival was founded in honor of pioneering anthropologist Margaret Mead, one of the first anthropologists to recognize the significance of film for fieldwork. The Mead Festival screens documentaries, experimental films, animation, and hybrid works that increase our understanding of the complexity and diversity of the peoples and cultures that populate our planet.


The Mead Festival was founded by the American Museum of Natural History in 1977, in honor of pioneering anthropologist Margaret Mead on her seventy-fifth birthday and her fiftieth year at the Museum. A film festival represented an especially apt form with which to celebrate Mead's life, as she was one of the first anthropologists to recognize the significance of film for fieldwork. To this day, the Festival continues to extend Mead's vision of bringing important topics and viewpoints to a general public.

The Festival is distinguished by its outstanding selection of titles, which tackle diverse and challenging subjects, representing a range of issues and perspectives, and by the forums for discussion with filmmakers and speakers.

In 2010, the Margaret Mead Film Festival implemented the Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award. The Award recognizes documentary filmmakers who embody the spirit, energy, and innovation demonstrated by anthropologist Margaret Mead in her research, fieldwork, films, and writings. The award is given to a filmmaker whose feature documentary offers a new perspective on a culture or community remote from the majority of our audiences' experience as well as displays artistic excellence and originality in storytelling technique. Films selected for the Margaret Mead Film Festival that are U.S., North American, or World Premieres are eligible for the Award.

Submissions are now open!

ELIGIBILITY: The Mead Festival considers:
• Non-fiction films and videos including, but not limited
to: feature documentaries, short documentaries, indigenous
works, community media, essay films, hybrid films, animation,
and experimental non-fiction.
• Production must be completed within the last three years.
• Submissions must be in English or with English
subtitles/voiceover narration.
• No resubmissions please.


Emily Haidet (Festival Coordinator); Soley Esteves (Festival Coordinator)


ELIGIBILITY: The Mead Festival considers:
-Documentary films and videos (including shorts, experimental films, essay films, animation, and new media).
-Production must be completed within the last three years.
-Submissions must be in English or with English subtitles/voiceover narration.
-No resubmissions please.
Please note that submissions will not be returned.

ENTRY FEE: $10-$35 US dollars pay what you can afford.
-Make checks payable to American Museum of Natural History

-DVD (Multi-zone or Zone 1, North American only)
- Withoutabox Secure Online Screener
-Label your tape or DVD with your name, email address and the title of your submission(s).

-HDCam, DigiBeta, Beta SP (NTSC), 35mm, 16mm, .mov.
-Works in any language other than English must have English subtitles or English voiceover narration.


All entrants will be notified no later than September 1st 2017 via email. Please be sure the Margaret Mead Film Festival email address (meadfest@amnh.org) does not get caught in your spam filter.

The Mead Festival does not confirm receipt of submissions. Check your Withoutabox Submission Status regularly, or consider using a traceable method, such as FedEx, if you would like confirmation of delivery. Due to the high volume of submissions the Mead Festival cannot confirm receipt of entries without a self addressed stamped postcard. Please do not call or write to check on your submission.

Submit a separate form for each entry


I represent that I have the right to submit this film to Margaret Mead Film Festival, and that if accepted, I will provide an exhibition copy by the appointed date and allow the festival to screen the film in public and to use submitted press materials to publicize any screening.

Margaret Mead 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.

I hereby warrant that I am authorized to commit the film for screening, and understand and accept these requirements and regulations.

I shall indemnify and hold harmless Margaret Mead Film Festival from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's 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.