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1. All entries must be submitted through FilmFreeway by providing a link to your work from YouTube or Vimeo (click here for a guide to submitting through FilmFreeway).  Films selected for the CYFI Fest must send an exhibition copy as a full HD quality file to the festival no later than November 23, 2020.  More details will be sent to those accepted on November 16, 2020.

2. All entries should include a 5 second title screen which includes the following information:

  • Lead producer’s full name (for group entry)

  • Full name (for individual and group entry) 

  • Grade level (for individual and group entry) 

  • City, State/Province, Country 

  • Title of the film 

  • Total running time of the film (not including the 5 second title screen or the ending credits) 

  • Please list your sources and references on a credits page at the end of your film. This will not be included in the run time for the film.

3.  Only one entry will be allowed per person.

4. For group entries, please specify the lead producer’s information on behalf of the whole group. Individual members of your crew can be submitted on FilmFreeway and on the title page of your film.


5. Please refer to the entry categories for the length specification of your film according to your grade level. Film length does not include the 5 second title screen of the film. Please list your sources and references on a credits page at the of your film.  The end credits will not be included in run time of the film. Parents/guardians’ consent must be given at the time of submitting the online submission form.

6. All information used in the film must be properly cited, giving credit to the original sources.  Any form of plagiarism will result in immediate disqualification.  List your sources and references on the credits page at the end of your film.

7. Your film should follow these rules and guidelines, connect to the theme clearly, demonstrate your creativity, and be original. Moreover, your content should include impactful stories, be inspiring, and catch the viewers’ attention. There are many elements to a good film, including: focus, lighting, audio, music, background, and the production process.

8. Your film's content must comply with all laws of the United States, and the local and national laws of the country of where the film was created.  Content must not:

a. advocate or promote illegal, sexual, or violent behaviors. 
b. support sexual, racial, cultural, or religious biases or prejudices. 
c. violate any laws, or any of the rules set forth in these Rules and Guidelines
d. invade the privacy of any individual. 
e. be inappropriate as determined by CYFI Fest in its sole determination.

9. All dialogue in the film must be in English.  Films with dialogue in a language other than English will not be accepted.


10. If your film is selected for the CYFI Fest, you will be notified by email on November 16, 2020. Those not selected will also receive an email notification.  Award and prize winners will be announced at the CYFI Fest.


11. The judges’ decision is final.  Entries will be judged and based on the CYFI Fest Judging Rubric.  Entries will be evaluated by a panel of judges invited by the CYFI Fest.


12. There is no entry fee.

13. You may enter the contest as a group (a group of friends, film club at school, or a whole class) or as individuals. One entry per individual or per group. In the case of a group entry, only one prize will be awarded to the group. Group entries can submit under the lead producer of the group.  Individual crew members can be named on the FilmFreeway submission form and on the title page.

14. All music, images, titles, footage and other copyrighted material used in your submission must be properly licensed. You must have permission and/or the proper rights to all content submitted.

15. Adults may offer advice and guidance, and may participate as actors in submitted films.  Adults shall not contribute to screenwriting, directing, filming, or editing of submitted work.  Professional assistance is prohibited.

16. All fields of the online submission form must be completed correctly and truthfully.

17. It is your responsibility to update CYFI Fest in case of change of contact information. The award will be given to the legal parent(s)/guardian of the winners that are minors. CYFI Fest reserves the right to disqualify any contestant.

18. The only compensation for prize-winning submissions is the prize itself. CYFI Fest will not pay for additional compensation to the contestants, nor be liable to the contestants under any circumstances.

19. All contestants must keep at least one (1) copy of their film. CYFI Fest is not liable or responsible for any films and links that are lost, damaged, stolen, or do not upload properly to the website.

20. The contestants will maintain ownership and the intellectual property rights of their filmmaker entries with the following exceptions: 

a. The entrants permit CYFI Fest the right to use their names, photographs, statements, quotes, testimonials, and film submissions for advertising, publicity, and promotional purposes without notification or further compensation. 

b. The entrants also permit CYFI Fest the right to use, reproduce, reprint, distribute, perform, and/or display the entrant’s project video without further compensation or notification to the entrant. 

c. CYFI Fest reserves the right to reproduce, reprint, distribute, perform, display, or exhibit the project for advertising, publicity, and promotional purposes on their website, at conferences, or at any other venues. 

d. By accepting the prizes, winners agree to hold CYFI Fest and all CYFI Fest employees and volunteers harmless against any and all claims and liability arising out of use of such prizes. Winners assume all liability for any injury or damage caused from participation in the contest or use/redemption of any prize.

e. The entrants agree to be bound by the official CYFI Fest Rules and Guidelines, and decisions of the judges.

21. Entrants must ensure they have permission to film all actors in their film.  CYFI Fest will not liable for any disputes between production members and actors of any submitted films.

22. Except when prohibited by law, entrants agree that all disputes will be handled individually. In the case of any dispute, entrants agree to attempt resolution with CYFI Fest. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation, and enforceability of the Rules and Guidelines, entrants’ rights and obligations, or the rights and obligations of the CYFI Fest in connection to the festival, shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of California, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules. Any legal fees incurred by CYFI Fest in the event of a dispute from an entrant is the responsibility of the entrant.

23. Intellectual Property – By submitting their work to CYFI Fest, all entrants agree that their submission is their own original work, does not infringe upon the intellectual property rights of others, and is in compliance with all copyright laws. When using sources and works that are not their own, entrants agree that those works are part of the public domain, that they have obtained permission to use the work, or that the use of the work does not constitute a substantial portion of the film so as to comply with fair use laws of U.S. Code Title 17 § 107 found at Where an entrant has obtained permission to use a substantial portion of another's intellectual property, entrants agree to submit proof of permission with the film entry. We urge entrants in their creativity to use their own artistic works or those in the public domain. As to research, please give credit to the owners and authors of scientific, academic, political, etc. works, such as through the credits of the film or when the source is used in the film.  For help finding images that are in the public domain and do not constitute any type of infringement, try starting at the Library of Congress: For free or royalty-free sound recordings and music, an artist typically places their work into the public domain. Try doing a search for royalty-free music, and you can find many songs available for a free and legal download to accompany your video. Entrants and their parents/guardian(s) agree to not hold CYFI Fest, its staff or volunteers liable for any intellectual property disputes and to comply with these rules and all copyright laws of contestants’ country and of the United States.

24. General Conditions – In the event that the operation or administration of the CYFI Fest is impaired for any reason such as, but not limited to, fraud, legality, technicality, or in the event that the CYFI Fest is unable to run as planned for any reason, the CYFI Fest may suspend the festival temporarily or indefinitely. CYFI Fest may address the issue and resume the festival or terminate the festival. Suspension or termination of the festival is under the sole discretion of CYFI Fest, and entrants agree not to hold CYFI Fest liable in these circumstances. 

CYFI Fest reserves the right to disqualify any entrant that it finds to not be in compliance or in violation with these Rules and Guidelines or any entrant who acts in an unprofessional or disruptive manner. Entries reflect upon CYFI Fest, and all entrants have freely and voluntarily entered the festival, so it is the sole discretion of CYFI Fest to disqualify any entrants who do not comply or act accordingly. 

In submitting a film and signing the submission form, all entrants agree to these terms and conditions of the contest and that CYFI Fest is not liable for any unauthorized or inappropriate sharing of films. Note that violence, profanity, or direct attacks on individuals or organizations will not be accepted. All films must adhere to copyright laws. Any film utilizing copyrighted material that is not the creation or property of the entrant will not be considered unless clear evidence of the legal right to use that copyrighted material is provided with the submission by the applicable deadline (for example: permission by the owner of the intellectual property.).

25. Release and Limitations of Liability – By voluntarily participating in the CYFI Fest, entrants agree to release and hold harmless CYFI Fest and its staff and volunteers from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of the entrant’s participation in the festival, including but not limited to intellectual property disputes (where entrant agrees that their submission is their own intellectual property, is of fair use, from the public domain, or that entrant has obtained permission for use from the owner of the intellectual property), cancellation of the festival, or injury, death, or losses of any kind from entrant freely participating in the festival. Entrant waives any right to claim any damages whatsoever, including but not limited to consequential, punitive, direct, or indirect damages.  CYFI Fest reserves the right to update these Rules and Guidelines.

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