16th Annual

SONscreen Film Festival

April 06, 2017 to April 08, 2017

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12501 Old Columbia Pike
Silver Spring MD 20904
Phone: (301) 318-9523

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Animated Short
Animated short films not to exceed 30 minutes.
Dramatic Short
Scripted, live-action drama category for films less than 30 minutes.
Documentary Short
Non-fiction documentary film less than 30 minutes. Can be live action, animated, or experimental.
Professional Short
Includes anyone professional or amateur not currently enrolled as a student. All category of films are eligible, 30 minutes or less. Select films will be exhibited, but not be in competition.
High School Student
A short film produced by a high school student. It can be any genre as long as it fits into the values that SonScreen promotes.
Comedy Short Film
A short live action comedy film less than 30 minutes in length. May be experimental.


The SONscreen Film Festival was created to nurture Christian filmmakers in their craft, career growth, and networking opportunities.


What is the SONscreen Film Festival?

The SONscreen Film Festival is the annual gathering for Christian filmmakers and artists who have a passion for using film and video for the purpose of creating timely and relevant productions for social awareness, outreach, and uplifting creative entertainment. Since its debut in 2002, the Festival has become the destination for up-and-coming Christian filmmakers to share their creative work, gain exposure, network with media & film students and be nurtured by film professionals.


Dan Weber; Dan Weber; Daniel Weber (Communication Director); Julio Munoz (Festival Director)


Some of the guidelines and rules have changed from previous years, so please take note. Festival entries fall into three categories: Student Films | In Competition, Student Films | Out of Competition, and Professional or Non-Student Films | Out of Competition

The SONscreen 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.

Payment of submission fee does not guarantee inclusion in our festival. If your film is chosen as an official selection SONscreen does not compensate for travel, accommodations, or appearance fees unless otherwise offered. SONscreen reserves the right to schedule changes and may at any time revoke a film screening, festival passes, accommodations, and any other filmmaker agreements for any reason.


Once the film is accepted to the SONscreen Film Festival, DIGITAL Screeners will be required.

The director reserves the right to rescind any screening engagement if the film is not delivered on time. The SONscreen Film Festival holds your screeners in a secure fashion and takes the filmmakers rights very seriously. Your screener must be in final format upon acceptance.

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

The undersigned shall indemnify and hold harmless the SONscreen 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.

Student Films | In Competition:

Festival entries are open to all undergrad and graduate students enrolled in school at the time of film production.

High school and College/International entries that are accepted are eligible for the category for which they are submitted. High School students may enter other categories.

Students must be enrolled in film courses at the time of production.

Film may not be more than 24 months old.

Entries must be submitted by the stated deadline.

All films/videos submitted must be in English, subtitled in English or dubbed in English.

Entries are not to exceed 30 minutes in length. All High School submissions must be 10 min. or less.*

The five categories for competition are: Dramatic Short, Comedy Short, Animation Short, Documentary Short, and High School Short.

Entries must be submitted through the online submission process, which is described below.

Films must have been completed while filmmaker was a student at a recognized educational institution. No paid commercial, theatrical, or TV releases will be accepted.

SONscreen requires that all above the line production roles be filled by students. The film director and producer must be currently enrolled students at the time of production. Other creative roles may be filled at the discretion of the filmmakers. We encourage as many of the other creative roles as reasonably possible be filled by students as well, and to only receive instructional help from professional. These distinctions are difficult to draw specific lines around, but the festival director reserves the right to disqualify a film if there is significant creative influence by teachers or other professionals. Festival director will make a decision attempting to be most fair to all films and filmmakers in competition.

Each film goes through a selective screening process. Winners will be chosen by a jury of professionals.

Winners are expected to participate in the publicity for the SONscreen Film Festival as well as other promotional events.

The decisions of the judges are final. There is no objective process in the selection of winning films, as each juror has different backgrounds and experiences that guides their decision.

Winners and all attendees are responsible for travel and all expenses.

Professional | Out of Competition:

This category includes both independent Professional and Non-Student Amateur filmmakers. A select number of works are featured each year for exposure and acknowledgment of their work, mentoring purposes, and professional networking opportunities.

Where applicable, the submission criteria is the same as outlined in the “Student In Competition” section, such as the 30 minute time limit.

Pro Show submissions must include a bio and list of other works credited.

The submission must support SONscreen Film Festival themes and a representative must be present at the Festival for the Question and Answer session following the screening.

OTHER Films | Not in Competition

The SONscreen Film Festival reserves the right to include works to be screened at the festival through invitation only. In these cases, they are included for the enhancement of the festival experience and are not in competition with the other official selections.

Online Submission Process

Submit your film at WithOutABox.com

Once you have submitted your Without A Box entry, please upload a Secure On Line Screener, which we will use to determine if your film meets the SONScreen requirements. If accepted, we will then send you instructions to upload a version of your film for the judges to view.

Include the following information with your film: Name of Filmmaker(s), School or Organization, Mailing Address, Email Address, Phone Number, Title of Film, Run Time, Submission Category (one category per film)

NOTE: All entries must be uploaded no later than the final deadline, with no exceptions. If possible, please do not wait until the last minute, as it may get you more exposure from the selection committee who spends a great deal of time watching the films.

Only one (1) draft version of the film may be accepted prior to deadline (if final cut is not available in time, but submission acceptance is based on this draft version so we do not encourage incomplete/draft works to be submitted).

Upon acceptance into the festival, a final cut must be supplied at least 2 weeks prior to the festival or the film may be pulled from the festival due be being incomplete. We recommend you always carry a digital copy of your film with you to the festival--just in case there is a mix-up.



The undersigned grants SONscreen the right to use the Film or Video submitted with this Agreement. Such use will include, but not necessarily be limited to, the following rights by SONscreen: to show the Film in part or in whole at the SONscreen Film Festival, to use short excerpts of the Film to promote, advertise, or otherwise inform the public of The SONscreen Film Festival; SONscreen may use any and all mediums to implement such rights, including print, electronic media, and web.

The undersigned also represents that the Film or Video is an original work; that all rights and clearances have been obtained; and further agrees to hold SONscreen, its successors and assigns, harmless from any claim arising out of this Film or Video.

These rights are non-exclusive.