Heartland Film Festival


Years running: 31 (since 1992)

Heartland Film Festival

International Film Festival.


Filmmakers participating in the Festival attend numerous screenings of their films and other special events designed to allow interaction between filmmakers and audiences. Films submitted to the Heartland Film Festival are judged on their overall artistic and technical quality. Additionally, each film is judged on how closely it aligns with Heartland’s mission to promote positive change in people’s lives through the transformative power of film. 

HFF has earned the special designation of being a qualifying festival for the Annual Academy Awards® within the Short Films category. 


  • $1,000 cash prize per non-Grand Prize-winning Finalist (four total prizes)
  • Grand Prize for Best Documentary Feature $15,000 
    $1,000 cash prize per non-Grand Prize-winning Finalist (four total prizes)
  • And other awards...


  • The film must have been completed on or after January 1, 2021 and be longer than 40 minutes in length. Short films (40 minutes or less) must be submitted to Indy Shorts, the separate, all-short-film expansion festival
  • Documentary and Narrative Features holding their U.S. or World Premiere may be eligible for “Best Premiere” awards.
  • Submit your film via Filmfreeway.
  • Subtitles language: english

Premiere Requirements

No premiere requirement

Jury and Organizers

Greg Sorvig (Programming director)



United States

Official Website




1043 Virginia Ave.
Suite 2
Indianapolis, IN 46203
United States

Phone: 1-317-464-9405


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Dates & Deadlines
  • Opening Date
    October 26, 2021
  • Earlybird Deadline
    February 06, 2022
  • Regular Deadline
    May 22, 2022
  • Late Deadline
    June 12, 2022
  • Extended Deadline
    July 10, 2022
  • Notifications
    August 31, 2022
  • Event Dates
    6 — 16 October 2022
Categories & Fees

Dramatic or comedic narratives; animated or live-action. Anything but a documentary qualifies for this category (41 minutes or longer).

  • Earlybird Deadline — $50
  • Regular Deadline — $65
  • Late Deadline — $85
  • Extended Deadline — $105

Nonfiction films; animated or live-action. 41 minutes or longer

  • Earlybird Deadline — $50
  • Regular Deadline — $65
  • Late Deadline — $85
  • Extended Deadline — $105
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