Ashland Film Festival Now Accepting Student Film Submissions

Ashland, Oregon – Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks and spend time with family and friends. However, it is a four day weekend and it gives the kids a lot of free time. Rather than seeing them all the time looking at the screens, why not offer them to make their own films? They might even have the chance to see their movie play on the big screen!

Youth who live in Coos, Curry, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine or Klamath counties in Oregon; Del Norte or Siskiyou counties in California can submit their short films (less than 5 minutes in length) for FREE to the LAUNCH Student Film Competition of the Ashland Independent Film Festival (AIFF). Everyone who submits a film receives two tickets to the festival, April 12-18.

The winning films are screened during the festival, and the filmmaker receives cash prizes and a pass to over 100 films and special events. There, they can interact with filmmakers from around the world and attend Q&A after screenings.

The submission deadline is January 5, 2018, so now is a great time to get them started.

Need inspiration to get kids moving? Here are seven Thanksgiving-themed ideas to put them into action:

1. Mom’s hip-hop career doesn’t leave time for pumpkin pies this year … and the family is in turmoil about it!
2. Uncle Dwight brings his new Russian girlfriend to dinner – could she be a spy?
3. How did Grandma and Grandpa meet? There could be an epic romance waiting to be told.
4. What are the origins of this incredible turkey herb sauce? Is there a caper recipe that needs investigation?
5. The Secret Life of the Family Parakeet: Maybe your seemingly innocent pet has an exotic past or a sultry secret life in nature, and ultimately didn’t settle for a golden cage.
6. How will the kids stop Great Aunt Zelda from reenacting her first Thanksgiving interpretive dance again this year?
7. Daddy snores after dinner in a tryptophan stupor while the rest of the family walks: the baby crawls, the dog trashes daddy’s office, and the upstairs bathroom is flooded.

All cinematographic genres are accepted: animation, documentary or narration, it’s up to the children to decide! There are five categories with cash prizes: Classes K-5, 6-8, 9-12, Undergraduates, and PridePrize. The PridePrize is a special award for outstanding films made by students who talk about the LGBTQ + experience. All student filmmakers in the region, in grades 9 to 12 and undergraduates, are eligible for the PridePrize. This award is made possible by a generous donation from the Equity Foundation’s LGBTQ Juvenile Justice Fund.

Have a question? See the LAUNCH FAQ at, or contact the Ashland Independent Film Festival at [email protected] The LAUNCH program is funded in part by a grant from the Oregon Cultural Trust. Prizes made possible by the Rotary Club of Ashland Lithia Springs.

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