2014 Heartland Film Festival Submission Period Now Open

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Academy Award®-qualifying festival seeks independent film submissions from all over the world, will award more than $115,000 in cash prizes at 10-day event in October

Independent filmmakers can now submit films for consideration to the 23rd Annual Heartland Film Festival. The 10-day Festival, which will be held in Indianapolis from October 16-25, 2014, serves to inspire filmmakers and audiences through the transformative power of film. Filmmakers participating in the Festival attend numerous screenings of their films and other special events designed to allow interaction between filmmakers and audiences.

The Heartland Film Festival is a qualifying festival for the Annual Academy Awards®in the Short Films Category. This means that the winner of the Grand Prize for Best Narrative Short Film will qualify for consideration in the Short Films category of the Annual Academy Awards® without the standard theatrical run, provided the film otherwise complies with the Academy rules. Recent Heartland Oscar® winners and nominees include “Inocente” (2013, winner), “Head Over Heels” (2013, nominee) and “Buzkashi Boys” (2013, nominee).

“From attendance to submissions, the Heartland Film Festival broke records across virtually every category in 2013,” said Tim Irwin, Heartland’s artistic director. “We expect another strong year in 2014, and are fully committed to the artistic process; filmmakers can rest assured that their films will be watched at least three times in full by our jury members.”

Filmmakers are invited to submit independently-produced feature length and short films in Narrative and Documentary categories. Student filmmakers are encouraged to apply for consideration within the standard field of competition. High school filmmakers are encouraged to enter their films in the Heartland High School Film Competition, now entering its fifth year.

Submissions will be evaluated for their achievement of excellence in filmmaking and alignment with Heartland’s mission to inspire filmmakers and audiences through the transformative power of film. Submissions are accepted through Withoutabox.com.

Volunteer screening committees will help narrow down the initial field of competitors. Juries comprised of individuals from the scholarly film community and previous Heartland Film Festival filmmakers will review the submissions and select five narrative features, five documentary features, five narrative short films and five documentary short films including student films, as winners. Outstanding films will be recognized with Heartland Film Festival Awards and more than $115,000 in cash prizes, including a Grand Prize for Best Narrative Feature, Grand Prize for Best Documentary Feature, Grand Prize for Best Narrative Short Film and Grand Prize for Best Documentary Short Film. A Grand Prize winner will be announced in the High School Film Competition, along with four Finalists.

Completed U.S. and international feature length and short films may be submitted by April 4 for early consideration and a reduced submission fee. The regular deadline to submit films for the 2014 Heartland Film Festival is May 16.

A record 1,521 independent films were submitted in 2013. Visit HeartlandFilmFestival.org for eligibility requirements, a full list of categories, submission rules and more information on Heartland Film Festival’s 2014 Call for Entries.

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