8th Annual

Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles

September 21, 2016 to September 28, 2016

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2658 Griffith Park Blvd #389
Los Angeles CA 90039
Phone: 323-660-1935

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Narrative Feature
High-quality feature narratives are welcomed. They can be of any subject, any category, any genre with special consideration that embrace the "personal vision" mantra of independent filmmaking.

We embrace a unique diversity of the cultural and ethnic communities of Los Angeles - including Asian, Mexican, Central American and African-American and welcome stories in these niches.

Several awards will be given in the Narrative Feature Category.
We strive to honor the short film's unique role in cinema. We give special consideration to those short films not previously screened in the Los Angeles area.

Multiple awards are presented in the short films category: narrative, animation, documentary, music video, and experimental.
Music Documentary
We are enthusiastic about music documentaries and have a long history of showcasing them - especially those not previously screened in Los Angeles. From punk to pop, classical to reggae, we want to see your film if it's nonfiction and about music. Note: We're looking for films about musical artists and the impact of music on pop culture. Music videos are accepted in the short film category.

We are particularly excited about finding a feature music documentary to screen at the Grammy Museum in DTLA.

An award for Best Music Documentary will be presented.
Documentary Feature
We're looking for high-quality feature documentaries on any subject.

Special consideration is given to documentaries that embrace a niche within the Los Angeles cultural spectrum.

Possible subjects include but aren't limited to: character studies, ethnic communities, social issues, active lifestyles, sporting figures, entertainment figures, environmental, etc.

We embrace the unique diversity of the cultural and ethnic communities of Los Angeles and welcome stories in these niches.

Please note: music documentaries should be submitted to the Music Doc category.

A variety of awards will be given out to the Documentary Feature category.
Drone Camera Films
This year's festival embraces the rapid rise in filmmakers using aerial cinema cinema photography. Their work will be showcased is a separate, dedicated screening program. All categories (shorts, features, documentaries) and all genres accepted.


Set in one of the defining urban centers of the world, Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles (DFFLA) has as its mission to exhibit a wide array of independent film and filmmakers from throughout the U.S. and abroad with a primary focus on those that explore the history, architecture, cultural diversity and contemporary social and political issues of the modern urban landscape.

We also seek to draw worldwide attention to Downtown LA. as the nexus of the Creative Capital of the World where film, music, video games and digital entertainment media converge.

Finally, each year we pay homage to the unique role that downtown Los Angeles has played in the development of American cinema.


Downtown Film Festival L.A. was established in 2007, proclaimed by L.A. Weekly to be among the Top 5 Film Festivals in Los Angeles. DFFLA celebrates the renaissance of downtown LA (DTLA) in all its facets - its historic movie palaces, its legendary cultural institutions, its thriving business and residential communities, and its unique ethnic-cultural diversity.

Since 2008 the festival screened more than a thousand narrative and documentary features and shorts. Highlights have included the West Coast premiere of Spike Lee's "Passing Strange: The Movie," a music documentary and live performance series at The Grammy Museum at L.A. Live, a multi-faceted film / events program celebrating "green urban living," a showcase of independent films utilizing 3-D technology, an in-depth look at L.A.'s burgeoning micro-cinema community, the L.A. premiere of Michael Jackson's "lost" film documenting his Jackson 5 tour of Africa in the 1970s. Through the years we've honored an array of artists who have contributed to independent cinema from Kenneth Anger to John Hawkes.

Our audiences are entertainment industry professionals: producers, agents, filmmakers, film financiers and other film, music, TV and video game industry creatives. Films screening at our festival enjoy the advantage of being seen by people that make a difference in your film and career. Last year alone, fully half the features presented received distribution deals.

This year's festival moves to a new venue and a new season, from summer to fall, as it expands from 5 to 8 days. The 2016 festival, Sept. 21-28, will be held at the Regal L.A. Live Stadium 14, the only multiplex in downtown Los Angeles, featuring state-of-the-art equipment and facilities, and part of the larger L.A. Live entertainment complex featuring 25 restaurants and lounges, The Grammy Museum, the Staples Center and other entertainment venues. With this move, Downtown Film Festival L.A. becomes the only major film festival in DTLA -- the historic center of the Film Capital of the World.

This year's festival will have a special focus on two pressing social issues: income inequality and gun violence. While the majority of this years festival's 68 screening slots will continue to be for films of all genres and themes, this year's dual special themes will be reflected in separate series of screenings reserved specifically for films (narrative and documentaries, features and shorts) with these themes. This commitment is in DFFLA's tradition of fearless innovation and diversity in programming.


Carolyn Schroeder




Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles (DFFLA) accepts no responsibility for loss or damage of entries during shipment to or from DFFLA.

1. Entries must be submitted by April 30, 2016. Late submissions will be accepted in May, however, higher fees will apply.

2. Entrants must submit their films through Withoutabox. DVDs are not accepted.

3. All entries must be in English or contain English subtitles (unless special arrangements have been made with festival.)

4. If selected to screen at DFFLA 2016, Presenting Filmmakers will be required to submit a DVD viewing copy at that time. This copy will not be returned.

5. For publications purposes, if your film/video is selected for screening, entrants must be prepared to supply at least three electronic images (publicity stills) either in jpeg or PDF format, 300 dpi, under 2K.

NOTE: Only electronic images will be accepted for the official festival catalog-program. We also encourage submitting as much publicity material that is available and a complete credit list. These additional materials cannot be returned. Any materials that entrants wish to be seen by the programming committee should be submitted in duplicate with this application.

6. Exceptions to the festival regulations must be authorized by a member of the Festival's senior staff.


I, the undersigned, acknowledge and agree as follows:
I have read, understood, and complied with all eligibility requirements. To the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in this document are true. This film is not subject to litigation and is not threatened by any litigation. I hold Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles (DFFLA) harmless from damage to or loss of any submitted materials en route to the Festival. I allow Downtown Film Festival-Los Angeles to use all submitted materials for promotional and festival screening purposes, including but not limited to using excerpts for festival marketing and promotional reels, press releases, www.dffla.com website exhibition, marketing materials. I am duly authorized to submit this film to the festival.