Submitting to the Asian Film Festival Los Angeles
What are the submission categories and how do I choose the right tone for my film?
Asian Film Festal select several films to screen a the festival from various categories. Not all categories will be selected and/or screened.
Narrative Feature Films:
Any narrative work of fiction of Asian, Asian American or Asian International with a running time of 45 minutes or more that are shot in narrative feature film style.
In order to encourage and support the development of Asian film industry, to qualify as an Asian, Asian American feature film, the even that have previously screened at up to other festivals anywhere in the world are eligible for our out-of-competition programs. Narrative Feature Films that have been or will be exhibited publicly at one or more non-festival screenings, broadcast or streamed on television or the Internet, or released via any home video or other public distribution platform (Blu-ray, DVD, video on demand, Youtu etc.) submitted project are eligible for our program.
Documentary Feature Films:
Any non-fiction film of Asian, Asian American with a running time of 45 minutes or more, not including entirely scripted or improvised fictionalizations of actual events. If your documentary contains some dramatization of actual events, you may submit in this category, but we will ultimately decide which program is best suited for your project. Films that have previously screened at other festivals anywhere in the world and that have been or will be exhibited publicly at one or more non-festival screenings, broadcast or streamed on television or the Internet, or released via any home video or other public distribution platform (Blu-ray, DVD, video on demand, etc.) are eligible for our programs.
Any narrative fiction or documentary film of Asian, Asian American with a running time of less than 35 minutes, including credits. Short Films have no premiere requirements or prior screening restrictions to retain eligibility. Short Films may have been screened at any number of public theatrical exhibitions in the world, broadcast or streamed on television or the Internet, or released via any home video or other public distribution platform.
How old can my film be and still qualify for submission?
Any film submitted for Asian Film Festival consideration must have been completed before our festival. If your film was completed prior to 2022, it is eligible for submission. If your film’s production took place prior to 2021 or in 2022, your film is eligible.
What submission formats do you accept?
All films could submitted via FilmFreeway entered on the submission application, or mailed to us on a single physical disc (DVD). We not accept links via e-mail, and we also to accept Youtube, Vimeo or Dropbox digital download or streaming links other than Youtu or Vimeo at this time.
In addition to Physical discs may be submitted to AFF in 4K or HD 1080 in MP4 format. Please refrain from submitting multiple films on a single disc. If you do so, we will view your film on the disc. You could include menus, trailers, production stills, photos and trailers on your disc.
If my film includes non-English dialogue, do you require English subtitles?
All films that contain significant non-English dialogue MUST include on-screen English subtitles at the time of submission. A translated list of dialogue on paper will not suffice. If your film is mostly in English and you wish to intentionally leave out subtitles for any non-English dialogue included in the film as an artistic choice, you do not need to provide subtitles for those particular sections. If submitting a physical disc or via a Vimeo link , we would prefer that all subtitles are hardcoded to your video file as opposed to including discreet subtitles that need to be turned on in order to be viewed.
Where do I send my submission?
If you choose to submit a physical disc to us instead of a secure online screener FilmfreeWay or via a Vimeo link, it should be mailed to us at the address below. Please be sure to write a your UPS or FedEx tracking number on the front label of your envelope. This will help ensure that your submission is processed as quickly as possible.
Asian Film Festival
530 S. Lake Ave., Unit 368
Pasadena, CA 91101
* Please submissions your tracking number :
(write your tracking number please)
Please do not send us a physical disc if you have already provided a Youtube or Vimeo link systems. If you are not satisfied with any aspect of your digital upload and would prefer to send a disc instead, please contact Asian Film Festival Los Angels that we can modify your previously selected submission format.
Am I required to obtain rights clearance for music or other copyrighted material lncluded in my film?
From a legal standpoint, you must clear all copyrighted materials included in your film before you can publicly screen it. However, Asian Film Festival does not check to ensure that you have obtained clearance for these materials at any point during the application process, nor will we be held responsible for any inclusion of uncleared materials in your film. It is the sole responsibility of the entity submitting the project to secure permission from the copyright holders of the material in question, whether it is music, stock footage, or any other elements that could violate an existing copyright. Films that are accepted into the Asian Film Festival must sign a waiver stating that materials used in the film do not violate any existing copyright. Quite often, rights holders offer reduced rates for independent films, so you should contact them directly to avoid any potential rights infringements.
What should I include with my submission?
After you have completed an online application, You could send to Asian Film Festival a single copy of your film, your printed press or promotional materials to us also. Quite often, films sent to us in standard size retail DVD or Blu-ray cases will become dislodged during shipping, resulting in scratched, unplayable discs, so we recommend mailing your film in a paper sleeve or slim jewel/clam shell case. Please refrain from taping your disc to any surface, as tape residue may also render your disc unplayable. Our preferred method of packaging is a medium (approximately 6” x 9”), bubble padded envelope. It is not necessary to wrap your disc in bubble wrap and mail it to us in an oversized box. Doing so will only make it more difficult for us to process your film once it is received.
Please do not use a paper label on your disc! There are many different variables with stickers and paper labels that could render your disc unplayable– a permanent marker (such as a Sharpie) will work just fine. Discs with text or graphics printed directly on the surface are also acceptable.
What happens if you are unable to get my film to play?
Asian Film Festival will make every effort to view your disc or online screener, but in the event that we are unable to watch your film, we will attempt to contact you to request another copy using the primary contact information that you provided on your application. However, there is no guarantee that we will get your replacement disc in time, and we must give preference to those who sent in a working copy to begin with. For this reason, we ask that you make absolutely sure that your disc or online screener plays all the way through before you send it to us! If your disc arrives broken, we will also make every attempt to contact you for a replacement. through before you send it to us! If your disc arrives broken, we will also make every attempt to contact you for a replacement.
Will you notify me if you do not receive my film?
Due to the volume of submissions we receive we are unable to contact each applicant individually if we do not receive his or her film. It is your responsibility to ensure that your package arrives at our office before the deadline you have selected. Once your film has been marked as received in UPS or FedEx, you will be able to see that it has been marked as such. Please allow up to to process your submission once it has been mailed. If your film has still not been marked as received within this period of time, contact us at for further instructions.
When are the submission deadlines and what are the fees?
The following deadlines are the dates by which we must receive your film. They are NOT postmark deadlines. We must receive your digital upload or physical disc by the deadline date for which your film has been registered.
All submissions are handled identically, regardless of which deadline you choose. Late deadline submissions are processed and screened in exactly the same manner as early and official deadline submissions are– the only difference is the submission fee. We encourage you to submit your film as early as possible to take advantage of lower submission fees.
Your film and must arrive at our office no later than the deadline date for which you have registered. We will not view your film until this payment is received. We suggest that you mail it to us well in advance of the deadline for which you have registered.
Where does my submission fee go?
Asian Film Festival is a unincorporated nonprofit organization establish by American International Chamber of Commerce that provides many different programs and initiatives for filmmakers. Fees from Festival submissions help fund our festival programs and also enable us to keep the submissions process thorough and democratic. We strive to process every submission promptly and view each and every film with an attentive and unbiased eye.
All proceeds from the Asian film festival, including but not limited to application fees, tickets, sponsorship and donations, are donated to Confederation Institute of Education ,a 501 (3) (C) non-profit educational institutions to support the Asian youth film creative and practical research program.
Who actually watchs all of the submissions?
We depend on a jury of award winning filmmakers and Asian Film Festival Los Angeles unit to uphold our mission as a Festival that only screens compelling and quality films.
If my film is selected for the Festival, what exhibition formats do you accept?
We accept DCP, and 35mm film prints for exhibition at the Asian Film Festival. Feature films delivered on DCP must include two copies on CRU drives and a Blu-ray backup. All DCPs must be DCI compliant with drives formatted with EXT 2 or 3 file systems (single partition, master boot record). All encrypted DCPs must supply DKDM keys that remain open for the duration of the festival. Blu-ray backup copies must be provided for both shorts and features on DCP. For 35mm film prints, we screen 24fps in aspect ratios of 1.37, 1.66, 1.85, or 2.39. We accept sound formats of mono, Dolby SR and Dolby SRD (Dolby Digital). Please note that these specifications are subject to change at any time. If your film is accepted into the Festival, we will provide you with the most up-to-date exhibition specs and deadlines for delivery of your master at that time.
Will you notify me if you do not receive my film?
Due to the volume of submissions we receive we are unable to contact each applicant individually if we do not receive his or her film. It is your responsibility to ensure that your package arrives at our office before the deadline you have selected. Once your film has been marked as received in our system, you will be able to log into your without a box account and see that it has been marked as such. Please allow up to six weeks for us to process your submission once it has been mailed. If your film has still not been marked as received within this period of time, CONTACT us at for further instructions.
Can you return my disc to me once you’re done with it?
We are unable to return any physical materials that are sent to us. However, we do take the security of this process very seriously– at no point will your disc leave our hands, and once our submissions process is over, all physical discs are recycled at a secure facility.
When will I find out whether or not my film was selected?
We will contact you via e-mail or phone before deadline. Please make sure that the e-mail address and phone number you provided on your application will be operational at that time. If your e-mail address or phone number changes after you’ve filled out the application, please notice to Asian Film Festival for update it. We will not be held responsible for any failed delivery of notification! If you haven’t heard from us by Nov. 15th, please contact us at CONTACT page for an official notification.
Film & Screenplay Submissions
The submission, selection, and notification processes, along with film requirements and rules have all been specifically designed to create a quick and convenient experience for our large number of diverse applicants and their projects.
The Asian Film Festival proudly introduces the Student Film and Screenplay Award.