MAPLE SUMMIT FILM FESTIVAL
OCTOBER 1-3, 2021
Narrative Shorts, Narrative Features,
LGBTQ+ Shorts and LGBTQ+ Features
and Conservocumentary Categories.
Not far from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in Fayette County, overlooking the Youghiogheny River Valley is Maple Summit - a rural community known not only for adventurous outdoor activities, but for having inspired and nurtured some of the world's most influential artists: Frank Lloyd Wright was inspired to design both Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob here; documentary filmmaker and co-producer of The Beatle's Let It Be Saul Swimmer, 1940's radio and stage personality Rhoda Chase (aka "The Blue Velvet Voice"), and three-time Edgar Allan Poe Award-winning mystery writer John Dickson Carr were all raised in nearby Uniontown; film pioneer and director of The Great Train Robbery Edwin S. Porter was raised in Connellsville; and the father of Pop Art, Andy Warhol, was born and raised in nearby Charleroi.
This gem of the Appalachians has also played - and continues to play host to renowned international artists. From those invited to summer with the influential Kaufmann family at Bear Run in the 1920-60s to the artists supported by the Hardy family - the owners of 84 Lumber, and now the artist in residency programs at Fallingwater. Craftsmen and women from around the world come to teach workshops at the Touchstone Center.
Maple Summit Film Festival was founded to celebrate not only the natural beauty of the Laurel Highlands, but also the area's long history of creative inspiration and nurturing.
Maple Summit Film Festival was founded to provide an outlet for independent filmmakers in the spirit of the artists who've found inspiration in Pennsylvania's Laurel Highlands, a place with a rich history, known for its natural beauty, tranquility, and a sense of adventure.
Maple Summit Film Festival is an annual film festival with categories for Narrative Shorts, Narrative Features, LGBTQ+ Shorts, LGBTQ+ Features, and Conservation Documentaries; all of which will compete for the "Best of" Annual Awards in their categories at a Live Festival Event.
Festival categories include:
Narrative Short (between 10 and 39 minutes in length)
LGBTQ+ Narrative Short (between 10 and 39 minutes in length)
Narrative Feature (longer than 40 minutes in length)
LGBTQ+ Narrative Feature (longer than 40 minutes in length)
Conservation Documentary (at least 30 minutes in length)
Categories are open to all genres (Comedy, Drama, Horror, etc.) with the exception of Conservation Documentary, which is specific to films with subject matter pertaining to nature conservation.
Submission Fee Schedule*
Narrative Short - Early Bird - $10
Narrative Short - Regular Deadline - $15
Narrative Short - Late Deadline - $20
Narrative Feature - Early Bird - $20
Narrative Feature - Regular Deadline - $35
Narrative Feature - Late Deadline - $50
Conservation Documentary - Early Bird - $35
Conservation Documentary - Regular Deadline - $50
Conservation Deadline - Late Deadline - $65
Discounts apply for Student Filmmakers and FilmFreeway Gold Members.
"Official Selection" films will be notified by email with a link to digital laurels; these films will be judged to "Finalists" and will be announced online and receive digital laurels/certificates via email.
The finalist films will be screened before an audience, followed by an award ceremony.
Annual Festival Awards may include a framed certificate or other physical award, and based on availability, sponsored products and services.
*Submissions are processed exclusively through Film Freeway.
The Annual Awards Screening of the Maple Summit Film Festival will take place in October 2021 (exact dates and venue TBC) in or near the city of Uniontown, PA in Fayette County.
1. 2021 Submission Deadlines
Submissions will be accepted from 1 January 2021 to 25 June 2021. The early bird deadline is Friday, 26 February 2021; the regular deadline is Friday, 30 April 2021; the late deadline is Friday, 25 June 2021. Early entry is encouraged but in no way guarantees acceptance.
2. Submission Format
Films must be submitted via password protected online screeners ONLY. We do not accept films sent over by DVD.
We do not accept subsequent cuts or more complete versions of submitted films, therefore changing or updating the originally submitted link is not accepted. Only one version of the film will be reviewed by programmers.
3. Submission Eligibility
- All submissions must have been completed after 1 January 2020.
- Films with distribution, which have not had a theatrical and/or day-and-date release are accepted.
4. Premiere Status
- There is no premiere policy for MicroShorts, Music Videos, Short Narrative films, and Feature Narrative.
- Submitted films may have screened at other Festivals, both physical and online.
5. Submission Fee
All submissions for Maple Summit Film Festival are to be paid through FilmFreeway platform. The submission fee is non-refundable.
6. Shipping - for finalist films ONLY
If selected for the Annual Award Screening, your DVD/Blu-Ray should be sent to:
Maple Summit Film Festival
c/o Robert Hensley Creative
PO Box 11146
Burbank, CA 91510
All shipping and postage costs for DVD/Blu-Rays and additional materials sent to Maple Summit Film Festival must be borne by the submitting party. The festival will not accept Cash On Delivery shipments. The festival will not absorb any fees incurred in U.S. customs. All charges must be pre-paid.
7. Selection of Films
Submissions are reviewed and selected under criteria, including but not limited to:
- Quality of narrative and production values.
- Independent nature of the production.
Maple Summit Film Festival endeavors to announce "Official Selections" within 30 days of the late deadline. "Finalist" selection will be completed by and announced by Friday, 27 August 2021, and inform all submitting parties, in writing, if their film has been named a "Finalist" of the Maple Summit Film Festival.
Finalists will receive a Filmmaker Festival Pack via email within a week of the "Finalist" announcement, which will include important information on shipping assets to the Festival, press and publicity, guest accreditation, contact information and how to make the most of participating in the Festival.
10. Annual Award Screenings - for finalist films ONLY
Selected films MUST provide a DVD or Blu-Ray (Region 1) of their film in order to be screened at the Maple Summit Film Festival. The film title MUST be clearly labelled on the DVD/Blu-Ray. All foreign language films MUST contain English subtitles files.
Finalist films and assets must be received by the festival no later than TEN days prior to its scheduled screening date. Maple Summit Film Festival aspires to provide the best quality projection possible but will not be held liable for any failure in the technical quality of the projection, nor will fees be refunded in any such case. Maple Summit Film Festival assumes that the submitting party or filmmaker(s) or entrant(s) or print source company has insured for damage and loss of the festival assets.
11. Scheduling - for finalist films ONLY
Screenings are scheduled at the discretion of the festival. Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule, the festival reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. Maple Summit Film Festival will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a change in scheduling.
No film may be withdrawn from the festival program after its selection as a finalist.
12. Promotion - for selected films ONLY
Finalist films must acknowledge that Maple Summit Film Festival reserves the right to promote the films on Maple Summit Film Festival website and social media using both images and video that you provide.
13. Annual Festival Awards
Jury prizes for Best MicroShort/Music Video, Best Short Narrative Film, Best Feature Narrative Film, and Best Conservation Documentary Film.
All finalist films' online screeners must be made available for the duration of the festival (January 1- October 31, 2021) for all the judges panel.
Do you have questions about our festival?
Send us a message, and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
c/o Robert Hensley Creative - PO Box 11146, Burbank, California 91505, United States