Call For Entries

What if I don't want to submit through FilmFreeway or Withoutabox?

  • We encourage entrants to submit their films through FilmFreeway or Withoutabox for a streamlined, efficient submission process. For more information on how to submit through FilmFreeway, check out their FAQ page here. For more information on how to submit through Withoutabox, check out their Support page here.
  • As an alternative, we are also now inviting entrants to submit through our direct online submission platform, right here on the CIFF website. To submit through our Online Entry Form, click here, fill in the digital form completely, and pay the corresponding entry fee by credit card. Through our system you can submit your film by Vimeo link or by sending in 3 DVDs, each clearly labeled with the film’s Title, Director, and Total Runtime.

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How do I know that you received my submission?

  • If submitting through the CIFF Online Entry Form, you’ll receive an immediate confirmation email that we’ve received your submission, as well as a copy of receipt of payment. If you’re sending in DVDs, we will contact you once they have reached our office. Please see below for more information on how to send in your DVD submission.
  • If submitting through FilmFreeway, please check your account after submitting to make sure the submission was successful. Within one week after your submission date, you'll receive a confirmation email that we've received your submission, as well as any potential notifications of further information we need from you.
  • If submitting through Withoutabox, please check your account after submitting to make sure that your submission meets our requirements and has been accepted for consideration.
    • If your Withoutabox submission has a BLUE dot with a checkmark, we have received your online submission, your 3 DVDs, and your submission has met all our requirements.
    • If your Withoutabox submission has a YELLOW dot, your submission has only partially met our requirements and is considered an INCOMPLETE SUBMISSION. We may have received your online submission or payment, but not yet received your 3 DVDs, we received your DVDs, but no payment, or we may have only received 1 or 2 DVDs in the package you sent. Please contact our Special Projects Director Beth Steele Radisek at beth@clevelandfilm.org to see what is needed to move your submission into consideration.
    • If your Withoutabox submission has a RED circle, we have not successfully received your submission. If you submitted online and sent your film in and it’s been more than 10 days, please contact us.

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What's the deadline for submitting my film?

  • All entries must be postmarked by December 18th, 2015, our extended deadline. Early submission discounts apply until November 30th, 2015 – please see our fee schedule on FilmFreeway, Withoutabox, or our Online Entry Form.

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Can I get the submission fee waived?

The CIFF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Fees collected through the Call for Entries process assist in our operations. Entry fee payment is required; exceptions will NOT be made so please do not request a waiver.

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What are your definitions of feature and short films?

All linear films with a total runtime of 45 minutes or over are considered feature films. All linear films less than 45 minutes are considered short films.

If you are submitting a Web Series or New Media content, you MUST email us directly at submissions@clevelandfilm.org prior to submitting, with a description and example of your content. If, after review, your content does meet the criteria, we will then provide instructions to submit directly through the CIFF website.

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Do you accept MUSIC VIDEOS?

We do - new for CIFF40! All Music Video submissions must be under 45 minutes and are subject to the same pricing and rules as short films.

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Do you accept WEB SERIES?

We do - new for CIFF40! See below for criteria and instructions.

Web series is a series of multiple videos in episodic form that pertain to the same theme and are intended for exclusive distribution on the internet. Content may be narrative, documentary, animation, or experimental. If your submission meets the criteria for this category, you MUST email us directly at submissions@clevelandfilm.org prior to submitting, with a description and example of your content. If, after review, your content does meet the criteria, we will then provide instructions to submit ONE WEBISODE PER WEB SERIES directly through the CIFF website. IF YOU SUBMIT WEB SERIES CONTENT DIRECTLY THROUGH FILMFREEWAY OR WITHOUTABOX WITHOUT EMAILING US FIRST, YOUR SUBMISSION WILL BE CONSIDERED INVALID AND DELETED.

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Do you accept NEW MEDIA content?

We do - new for CIFF40! See below for criteria and instructions.

Our New Media program is designed to showcase interactive storytelling, using new and innovative forms of media and technology, resulting in a live presentation at the festival. Some examples of New Media include cross-platform films, multi-media installations, websites, and interactive gaming. Content can be narrative, documentary, animation, or experimental, but must include an interactive element. If your submission meets the criteria for this category, you MUST email us directly at submissions@clevelandfilm.org prior to submitting, with a description, a link or links to examples of the project, and an estimated cost of and needed equipment for presentation. If, after review, your content does meet the criteria, we will then provide instructions to submit directly through the CIFF website. IF YOU SUBMIT NEW MEDIA CONTENT DIRECTLY THROUGH FILMFREEWAY OR WITHOUTABOX WITHOUT EMAILING US FIRST, YOUR SUBMISSION WILL BE CONSIDERED INVALID AND DELETED.

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Do you accept online screeners?

  • We do!
  • If submitting an online screener through FilmFreeway, please review each point on their FAQ page here. Through FilmFreeway, we accept HD uploads, Vimeo, and YouTube links.
  • If submitting an online screener through Withoutabox, please review each point in the Secure Online Screeners section of the Withoutabox support page here.
  • We are also now accepting online screener submissions through our CIFF online submission platform. Please click here to submit an Online Entry Form and include your password-protected Vimeo link. Vimeo links are the ONLY online screeners we will accept outside of FilmFreeway and Withoutabox, for security reasons. Both the Vimeo link and password you provide MUST be valid and accessible through April 11th, 2016. CIFF takes the security of our submitted films very seriously, and all Vimeo links will be shared only with our Selection Committee members in a secured setting.

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How many DVD copies of my film do I need to send and in what format?

If sending your film in on DVD, you must send 3 DVDs (Region 0 or 1) for consideration by the Selection Committee. Submitting less than 3 DVDs or DVDs that are not Region 0 or 1 will result in an INCOMPLETE SUBMISSION and WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED. Please clearly label each DVD with the film TITLE, DIRECTOR/CONTACT INFO, and TOTAL RUNTIME. If submitting through FilmFreeway or Withoutabox, please include your tracking number on all DVDs as well.

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How should I send in my submission copies of my film?

  • After submitting online through either FilmFreeway, Withoutabox, or our Online Entry Form, please mail us your 3 DVDs as soon as possible to:

Cleveland International Film Festival
Attn: Selection Committee
2510 Market Ave. Cleveland, OH 44113 USA

  • If using a mailer for your entry, please use a bubble envelope, not a fiber-filled envelope. Fiber envelopes break and can cause damage to DVDs and playback equipment.
  • All entries must be sent to the CIFF prepaid and, for your protection, should be insured.

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Can I submit a Blu-Ray?

Unfortunately no, all entries must be DVDs to be considered.

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Will I get the DVDs I submit back?

Unfortunately no, DVDs submitted will NOT be returned.

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Can I resubmit a film I submitted to a previous CIFF?

No, unfortunately films previously submitted to CIFF will not be considered for the 40th festival.

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Can I submit works in progress or instructional works?

Please do not submit works in progress or industrial/instructional works.

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Does my film have to be a premiere to submit?

The only premiere-status we require is a premiere in the Greater Cleveland area. Entries previously screened in the Greater Cleveland area or aired on television in Cleveland will not be considered.

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Can I submit if my film was, is, or will be available before the 40th CIFF for online viewing?

Any film that is available for viewing on the web (i.e. YouTube, public Vimeo) prior to our festival dates will not be considered.

However, if you are submitting a Web Series or New Media Content, you MUST email us directly at submissions@clevelandfilm.org prior to submitting, with a description and example of your content. If, after review, your content does meet the criteria, we will then provide instructions to submit directly through the CIFF website.

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What genres do you accept?

All genres! The CIFF exhibits short and feature length films of all genres and categories, including Narrative, Documentary, Animation, and especially International – we screened films from over 60 countries last year!

CIFF also just recently started accepting Music Videos, as well as Web Series and New Media content. If you're submitting a Music Video, it must be under 45 minutes, and please refer to the Short Film pricing schedule. If your submission falls under the Web Series or New Media category, please email our Special Projects Director, Beth Steele Radisek, directly at beth@clevelandfilm.org, prior to submitting.

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Do you have competitions?

Do we ever! The CIFF currently has 10 competitions for feature films and 14 competitions for short films and we're always expanding our award program. At the 39th CIFF, we gave away over $77,000 in cash awards!

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Is the CIFF an Academy®-qualifying festival?

Yes! Both the Best Animated Short Film Award winner and the Best Live Action Short Film Award winner will qualify for consideration in the Short Films category of the annual Academy Awards®. Please check the Academy® website for rules and eligibility.

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Should I note if I or my film has an Ohio connection?

Absolutely! We love giving our Ohio filmmakers and films extra love. We even have a Local Heroes Competition that awards the winner with $5,000!

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Should I note if I am currently a student?

Definitely! Especially if it’s a short film to be eligible for our Best Student Short Film award of $1,000!

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How and when will I be notified if my film was accepted?

You will be notified by email whether your film has been selected for exhibition at the 40th CIFF. Our notification deadline is February 26th, 2016, but is subject to change. We will try to let you know as soon as possible whether your film made it or not, but please be patient as our selection process does take time.

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Should I send a press-kit with my film?

No need to send in a press-kit, paper or digital, with your film at this point. If your film is selected though, you will eventually need to supply extra press materials, including high-res digital photos.

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Can I get feedback about my film?

Yes! Each Selection Committee member offers comments about every film they watch. If you would like to see your comments, please wait until after our festival ends (April 10th, 2016) and contact our Special Projects Director Beth Steele Radisek at beth@clevelandfilm.org.

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If my film is selected for exhibition, what formats must my film be available in?

All feature films submitted must be available for exhibition in one of the following formats: DCP (preferably unencrypted) or as a CIFF-approved ProRes digital file. BLU-RAY AND DVD WILL NOT BE SCREENED FOR EXHIBITION.

All short films submitted must be available for exhibition as a CIFF-approved ProRes digital file. Short films will be transferred temporarily onto CIFF’s secure and private hard drive system for presentation in one or more of our compiled short programs. BLU-RAY AND DVD WILL NOT BE SCREENED FOR EXHIBITION.

CIFF-approved ProRes digital files are defined as .mov files encoded with ProRes 422 or ProRes 422(HQ). We will not accept ProRes LT, 4444, or Apple Animation Codec files, among other files not listed. Exhibition files must be sent to the CIFF office on hard drives that will be returned post-festival. If your film is accepted, please clarify with CIFF if your file meets our requirements as soon as possible.

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Memberships

What are the benefits of becoming a member?

There are five different CIFF membership levels, each with specific benefits. ALL membership levels include these benefits:

  • * Advanced and complimentary mailing of the Program Guide prior to distribution to the general public
  • * Opportunity to buy CIFF tickets before they go on sale to the general public
  • * Discounts on CIFF tickets and merchandise
  • * Discounts on Film (And Other Arts) Feast events
  • * Access to members-only CIFF My Schedule and Order History on our website
  • * Invitation to exclusive events such as the "Half-way to the CIFF" annual celebration as well as the Cleveland Preview Party

For membership descriptions and pricing please visit our Membership page.

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How do I purchase a gift membership?

If you would like to purchase a gift membership, you can do so on our Membership page, by mailing in a completed order form with payment, or over the phone by calling Debbie Marshall at 216.623.3456 x10.

  • Because CIFF members are frequently contacted via mailings and emails, and are uniquely identified and gain access to membership benefits through their login (their email address) and password (of your or their choosing), it is important to provide the member's full contact information. If you do not have their full contact information we suggest purchasing a gift certificate instead.
  • It is also important to note if this membership is a renewal of a current membership, unless you have the member's current login and password, we suggest purchasing a gift certificate instead; otherwise there is a chance the recipient of the membership will have duplicate memberships in our system.

To purchase a gift membership through the website, follow these steps:

1. Click the white JOIN tab located at the top right of the home page.

2. Review the benefits of the different membership levels and click gift next to the desired membership level.

3. Then select who you would like the initial membership materials to be mailed to: the Member or the Purchaser. Please provide the member's full contact information. The member will not be initially contacted unless requested in the shipping fields of the order. A receipt notification of the order will only be sent to the billing email address and the shipping email address. Initial membership materials will be sent to the shipping address provided.

4. Enter the member contact information and click Add to Cart. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart. You can also access your cart through the shopping cart icon at the top right of the web page.

5. If you are done adding items to your cart, click go to cart on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

6. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, and then click CHECKOUT NOW.

7. Enter your billing information and shipping information and click CONTINUE.

8. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

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Should I purchase a gift membership or a gift certificate?

Give the gift of film by purchasing the film fan in your life a CIFF membership or gift certificate!

CIFF members at all levels enjoy advanced ticket sales (one week before sales to the general public!), discounts on CIFF tickets (a savings of $2 per ticket!), and 10% off CIFF merchandise and Film Feast events.

Gift certificates can be redeemed toward anything we sell, from CIFF memberships, tickets, and merchandise, to Film Feast tickets. The value of the gift certificate never expires, so the recipient can choose when to redeem it.

Whether or not to purchase a gift membership or gift certificate depends on the purchaser and the recipient. If buying a gift membership, some things to consider:

  • You will need the member’s full contact information.
    • CIFF members are frequently contacted via mailings and emails, and are uniquely identified and gain access to membership benefits through their login (their email address) and password (of your or their choosing). If you do not have their full contact information or are unsure if they are a current CIFF member, we suggest purchasing a gift certificate instead.
  • It helps to know if the recipient is a pre-existing CIFF member.
    • If you are unsure, we suggest placing the order via the phone (216.623.3456), so our staff can check member status and assist you with the order.
    • If the membership is a renewal of a current membership, unless you have the member's current login and password, we suggest purchasing the gift membership over the phone (216.623.3456) or purchasing a gift certificate instead; otherwise there is a chance the recipient of the membership will have duplicate memberships in our system.
  • If the recipient is new to the Festival.
    • If they have expressed interest in the Festival, a gift membership makes a wonderful gift.
    • If you are unsure of their availability during the Festival, we suggest purchasing a gift certificate (the value of which never expires!) that can be exchanged for CIFF memberships, tickets, merchandise, and Film Feast tickets.

To purchase a gift membership, please refer to How do I purchase a gift membership?

To purchase a gift certificate, refer to How do I purchase a gift certificate?

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How do I purchase a membership?

If you are not currently a member or would like to purchase a gift membership, you can do so on our Membership page, by mailing in a completed order form with payment, or over the phone by calling Debbie Marshall at 216.623.3456 x10.

To purchase a membership through the website, follow these steps:

1. Click the white JOIN tab located at the top right of the home page.

2. Review the benefits of the different membership levels and click JOIN next to the desired membership level.

3. If the membership is a gift, please refer to "How do I purchase a gift membership?" for instructions.

4. Enter the member contact information and click Add to Cart. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart. You can also access your cart through the shopping cart icon at the top right of the web page.

5. If you are done adding items to your cart, click go to cart on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

6. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

7. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

8. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

If you are currently a member and would like to renew, follow the steps for membership renewal under "How do I renew my membership?"

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How do I renew my membership?

You must first login. Click on LOGIN in the upper right corner of the home page. Enter your email (or Membership ID) and password. Click login. If you have forgotten your password click on Forgotten Password? to have it emailed to the address associated with your membership account.

Follow these steps to renew your membership:

1. Click the white JOIN link located at the top right corner of the page. You will be redirected to the membershp page. Membership levels and benefits will be listed.

2. Click the renew button next to the level you'd like to renew. Contact information will appear below which you can edit if need be. The page will refresh. Click on renew now button.

3. Click the Add to Cart button. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart.

4. If you are done adding items to your cart, click go to cart on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

5. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

6. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

7. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

You will receive an order confirmation number and a receipt will be sent via email, if provided.

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How do I log in to my membership account on the website?

Click on LOGIN in the upper right corner of the home page. Enter your email (or Membership ID) and password. Click login.

You will see a "Hello, MemberFirstName! Your Account" link at the top right of page. If you do not see this, you are not logged in. Click on the link to view and/or edit your account information.

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What do I do if I forgot my membership login information?

If you do not remember your password, you can have it emailed to you at the email address you provided at sign-up. Click on the white LOGIN link at the top right of the page. Click on the Forgotten Password? link and enter your email or membership ID number. An email with login information will be sent to the email entered.

If you no longer have access to that email address or don't have your membership ID, please call Debbie Marshall at 216.623.3456 x10.

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As a member, when will my Program Guide be mailed?

Members are the first and only patrons to receive our CIFF Program Guide via a mailing . The 39th CIFF Program Guide will be mailed to members the week of February 23, 2015.

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How does the members-only My Schedule feature work?

My Schedule allows members to select the films you want to see and add them to a custom schedule which is saved in your member profile.

Browse a complete alphabetical listing of films by clicking here. Click on a film title for a description. You can also browse the 39th CIFF Program per day by clicking the white FILMS link and selecting either the Films Listing or Films Schedule link.

Once logged in as a member, you can add films to My Schedule in one of two ways: before purchasing or during the checkout process. Please note you should choose only one of these two options as doing both may add duplicate screenings to your My Schedule and/or Cart.

To add films to My Schedule before purchasing:

1. From the film description page, select the screening date and time you plan on attending from the drop down menu located above the film’s photos/trailer.

2. Click the ADD TO SCHEDULE link located next to the screening times. The ADD TO SCHEUDLE option will change to ADDED! indicating the screening is now on My Schedule.

To view or edit My Schedule, click on the icon at the top of the page.

Remove films from My Schedule by clicking on the —FROM SCHEDULE button below the ADD TO CART button.

Add films to the Shopping Cart from My Schedule by first confirming you have selected the correct screening time and date, selecting a quantity of tickets, and clicking on the ADD TO CART button. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart.

To add films to My Schedule from the Cart:

1. After adding the films of your choice to your Cart, click the ADD TO SCHEDULE button in your Cart for each film you would like added to My Schedule.

2. The ADD TO SCHEUDLE option will change to ADDED! indicating the screening is now on My Schedule.

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I am a CIFF member at the Film Fanatic, Director, Executive Producer, or Movie Mogul level. When will I get my 6-pack of vouchers?

Vouchers will be mailed to applicable members the week of February 23, 2015 along with the 39th CIFF Program Guide.

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As a Director, Executive Producer, or Movie Mogul member, when can I expect to receive my pass?

Passes and Opening Night Gala invitations will be mailed the week of March 2, 2015.

If you became a passholder member after March 11, 2015 your Pass and Opening Night Gala invitation will be held at Patron Services, located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas to the left of the concessions, and will be available for pick up after 5 PM on Opening Night (March 18, 2015).

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I purchased a Director/Executive Producer/Movie Mogul membership last minute, How can I get my pass?

If you purchased your passholder memebrship on or before March 11, 2015, your Pass and Opening Night Gala ticket will be held at Patron Services, located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas to the left of the concessions. It will be available for pick up after 5 PM on Opening Night (March 18, 2015).

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Are Day Passes available?

Day Passes are only available while supplies last during the Festival. They can only be purchased in-person at the Challenge Match for a donation of $150.00 per day for weekdays (Monday-Thursday) or $200.00 per day for weekend days (Friday-Sunday).

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Volunteering

What types of volunteer opportunities are available at the Festival?

We are so grateful to our hundreds of volunteers who wear many hats at the Festival. They assist with Challenge Match, Stand By, Merchandise Store, Patron Services, Hospitality Headquarters, and Parking. Duties include ballot distribution and collection, ushering patrons in the theaters, monitoring the lobby and hallways, parking validation, and maintaining the reserved seating section of the theaters.

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How do I become a volunteer for the Festival?

For more information on volunteering please visit our Volunteer page.

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Festival 101

When and where will the 39th CIFF Program Guide be available?

CIFF members are the first to be mailed a complimentary CIFF Program Guide when they become available the week of February 23, 2015.

If you are not a member and would like a Program Guide mailed to you, you can purchase one for a shipping fee of $4 per Program Guide via our Merchandise page.

To purchase a Program Guide, follow these steps:

1. Click the SUPPORT US link located at the top right of the home page.

2. Select the Merchandise tab to access a list of available CIFF merchandise.

3. Input the number of Program Guides you would like in the quantity box.

4. Click on ADD TO CART. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added the Program Guide to your cart.

5. If you are done adding items to your cart, click "go to cart" on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

6. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

7. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

8. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

You will receive an order confirmation number and a receipt will be sent via email, if provided.

Program Guides are distributed and available for pick up at Dollar Bank locations, Cuyahoga County Public Libraries, Cleveland Cinemas Theatres, and throughout Tower City Center. They are also available at most local and independent coffee shops, restaurants, book stores, boutiques, and community centers throughout the Greater Cleveland area.

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Where is the CIFF held and how do I get there?

The Cleveland International Film Festival takes place primarily at Tower City Cinemas in Tower City Center (230 West Huron Road, Cleveland, OH 44113).

For driving directions to Tower City Cinemas, please visit our Parking page.

For public transportation to Tower City Cinemas, please visit our RTA & More page.

The Festival also hosts neighborhood screenings at locations throughout northeastern Ohio. At the 39th CIFF, these include the Akron Art Museum, the Akron-Summit County Public Library, the Beachland Ballroom & Tavern, the Capitol Theatre, the Cedar Lee Theatre, Cinemark Valley View, Chagrin Cinemas, Cleveland Museum of Art Gartner Auditorium, the Hanna Theatre at PlayhouseSquare, the Nightlight in Akron, and Shaker Square Cinemas.

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How many films can I see in one day?

If you want to wake up really early and stay up really late, you can see as many as 5 screenings on a week day and 7 screenings on a weekend day!

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Are the films rated or age-restricted?

Most independent and international films are unrated by the M.P.A.A.; therefore, viewer discretion is advised and any content warnings should be heeded. No person under the age of 10 will be admitted—except for Family Film screenings.

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What is the difference between late additions and added screenings?

A late addition is a film that has been added to the CIFF schedule after the Program Guide has been printed.

An added screening is a supplementary screening time for a popular Festival film that is already a part of the CIFF program. Check the Latest Updates page or iPhone/Android mobile apps for up-to-date schedule changes and additions.

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Where can I park for the Festival?

Discounted parking ($3.00 per visit) is offered WHEN AVAILABLE to CIFF patrons in the Tower City Center self-parking garage. Patrons must have their parking ticket validated at Tower City Cinemas to receive the discounted rate of $3.00 per visit. Please note that parking at Tower City Center is shared with other Tower City Center patrons, merchants, and employees, as well as the patrons of the Horseshoe Casino, Progressive Field, and Quicken Loans Arena. Parking is on a first-come, first-served basis and is therefore not guaranteed to CIFF patrons. We ask you to arrive at your film at least 20 minutes early, so please be sure to work in time for finding parking and getting from your car to the theater. Please allow at least 1 hour of extra travel time.

If you have a GPS system or access to internet mapping systems (e.g., Google Maps or MapQuest), use this address for directions to Tower City Center self-parking:

737 Canal Road
Cleveland, OH 44113

Tower City Center valet parking is free WHEN AVAILABLE for Executive Producer passholders and Movie Mogul passholders, as well as Corporate Sponsor passholders. Please present your Film Festival pass to receive free Tower City Center valet parking. Access to Tower City Center valet parking is located off of W 3rd Street between Prospect Avenue and W Huron Road.

For more information on transportation to Tower City Center and alternatives to Tower City Center self-parking, please visit Plan Your Day.

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When should I arrive for a film?

Seating is available at all screenings on a first-come, first-served basis.Ticket holders and passholders must arrive at least 20 minutes before the scheduled start of any screening for admission. Theater personnel may refuse to permit late seating. Seat-saving between screenings is not permitted. All patrons must leave the theater following each screening and take any personal belongings. Please allow additional travel time to ensure you arrive on time for your films.

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What is the CIFF seating policy at Tower City Cinemas?

  • * Passholders and ticket holders must arrive at least 20 minutes before the scheduled start of any screening for admission. Theater personnel may refuse to permit seating of late arrivals.
  • * General admission seating for ticket holders, which is limited to 100 spaces per theater, is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • * Passholder seating is also limited to 100 spaces per theater and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • * All patrons must leave the theater following each screening and take any personal belongings. Patrons and items that remain will be removed from the theater.
  • * Seat saving between screenings is not permitted.
  • * Patrons are encouraged to fill middle row seating first in order to minimize any disruption as the remainder of the audience arrives.
  • * Seating polices at Film Festival neighborhood locations vary.

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Once I arrive at Tower City Center, where do I go?

Tower City Cinemas is located in the southeast corner of Tower City Center, just beyond the food court. If you have not already received your tickets, they will be at Will Call. For information on Will Call, please refer to "What is Will Call and where is it located?"

Lines for ticket holders form in the hallway to the right of the main entrance to Tower City Cinemas and are admitted to the theater no earlier than 10-15 minutes before show time.

Lines for Stand By ticket purchases and Stand By ticket holders will be in the hallway to the left of the main entrance to Tower City Cinemas. For the Stand By procedure, please refer to "What is Stand By and how does it work?"

Avoid the lines, Stand By, and sellouts by becoming a passholder! Passholders are admitted to the theater no earlier than 30 minutes prior to a film and no later than 15 minutes prior to a film.

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What is Will Call and where is it located?

Will Call, also known as the Duke Desk, is located in the hallway, just to the left of the main entrance to Tower City Cinemas. Tickets will be held in the last name of the purchaser. Please bring a printout of your order or a form of ID when picking up your tickets at Will Call.

Will Call for our neighborhood screenings can be picked up in advance at the Duke Desk at Tower City Cinemas, no later than 1 hour prior to the screening. One hour before the neighborhood screening, Will Call tickets will be available for pick up at the box office of the theater where the screening is taking place.

Please bring a printout of your order or a form of ID when picking up your order at Will Call.

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What is Stand By and how does it work?

Only a portion of available seats are sold in advance so we can save room for our passholders. Therefore, even for crowded films, we can often accommodate many patrons just before showtime.

Numbered Stand By tickets are sold (cash or voucher only) beginning one hour before showtime, outside the theatre lobby at Stand By. (Be aware a line sometimes forms earlier than this.) Then just before the film begins, Stand By ticket holders are admitted, in numerical order, on a space-available basis until the theater is full. Those who cannot get in receive a refund in the manner in which they paid. Cash or vouchers only; no check or credit cards accepted.

Stand By ticket purchases and line-up for neighborhood screenings will be available for purchase one hour prior to the screening at the neighborhood theater's box office and follow the same time frame as regular Stand By.

Hint: buy your tickets early or, better yet, become a passholder-level member to avoid Stand By!

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Why is there a reserved seating section in the theater?

Reserved seating is a benefit of Corporate Sponsor passholders and Day passholders, as well of the Executive Producer and Movie Mogul passholders. In addition to the reserved section seating, Movie Mogul members are guaranteed a reserved seat for themselves and one other ticketed guest to each screening of their choice. To take advantage of this perk, become a member today!

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Where do I purchase merchandise from the Festival?

Festival merchandise can be purchased in-person during the Festival at the Film Festival Store, located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas.

39th CIFF merchandise can also be purchased post-Festival on our website or over the phone by contacting Debbie Marshall at 216.623.3456 x10. Merchandise from previous Festivals is also available for purchase on our website.

To purchase merchandise through our website, follow these steps:

1. Click the SUPPORT US link located at the top right of the home page.

2. Select the Merchandise tab to access a list of available CIFF merchandise.

3. For each item, select the size and quantity, and click ADD TO CART. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart.

4. If you are done adding items to your cart, click "go to cart" on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

5. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

6. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

7. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

You will receive an order confirmation number and a receipt will be sent via email, if provided.

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Where do I make a donation to the Festival?

You can do so via:

1. Our website on the Support Us page.

2. Mail. Send your donation to our Business Office:

Cleveland International Film Festival
2510 Market Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44113

3. Phone at 216.623.3456 x19

4. In person at our Festival Challenge Match area, located to the left of the concessions in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas.

To make a donation through our website, follow these steps:

1. Click the SUPPORT US link located at the top right of the home page.

2. Select the amount you would like to donate from the drop-down menu next to "I LOVE THE CIFF THIS MUCH:". If you do not see the amount you wish to donate, select "Other" and enter the amount. Checkmark the box below to indicate if it is in honor or in memory of someone.

3. Click DONATE and a pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart.

4. Once you are done adding items to your cart, select "go to cart" on the pop-up box or click on the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

5. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

6. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

7. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

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How do I get more involved as a sponsor or partner of the Festival?

If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities and packages with the Festival, or are part of an organization or media outlet that would like to partner with the Festival, please contact our Associate Director, Patrick Shepherd, at 216.623.3456 x23 or at patrick@clevelandfilm.org.

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How can I purchase/view a film I saw at the Festival?

The mission of the CIFF is exhibition and education; therefore, we do not distribute films screened during the Festival. However, Print Source contact information is located below most feature film descriptions in the Program Guide as well as on our website under the film's description page in the right-hand column. You can use this information to contact the distribution company/filmmaker about purchasing or viewing their film.

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Tickets And Vouchers

What is the price of tickets?

Opening Night Gala tickets:

--> $125 for members
--> $150 for non-members

Festival tickets:

--> $13 for members*
--> $15 for non-members*

--> $13 for students and seniors (in-person and w/ ID only)

*Large orders containing 10 or More tickets will receive a discount of $2 off per ticket ($11/ticket for members and $13/ticket for non-members). This discount is not valid on Opening Night Gala tickets or in combination with another discount offer or discount code.

Please note tickets purchased via the phone, internet, or mail will be charged a $4 handling fee per order.

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When and where can I purchase tickets?

Tickets go on sale:

For members -- February 27, 2015 at 11 AM via the internet, phone (877.304.3456), mail (2510 Market Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44113, or in person at the Film Festival Box Office located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas.

For general public -- March 6, 2015 at 11 AM via the internet, phone (877.304.3456), mail (2510 Market Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44113), or in person at the Film Festival Box Office located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas.

Tickets are available for purchase online until 11 PM on the day before the screening. You may also purchase tickets by phone (877.304.3456) or in person at the Film Festival Box Office (located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas). See below for box office hours.

Day-of show tickets are only available for purchase in person at the Film Festival Box Office.

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What are the hours of the Film Festival Box Office?

For Members only

February 27-March 5, 2015:
11 AM - 7 PM (Monday - Saturday)
12 Noon - 5 PM (Sunday)

For the general public

March 6-18, 2015:
11 AM - 7 PM (Monday - Saturday)
12 Noon - 5 PM (Sunday)

During the Festival:

March 19-28, 2015:
8:30 AM - 9:30 PM Daily

March 29, 2015
8:30 AM - 7 PM

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How do I get my tickets once I've ordered them?

Ticket orders placed on or before March 10, 2015 via the internet, phone, or mail will be mailed to the address provided (unless indicated as Will Call by the purchaser).

Ticket orders placed after March 10, 2015 will be available for pick up prior to the Festival at the Film Festival Box Office (located in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas at the main box office) or during the Festival at Will Call.

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I did not receive my tickets. What should I do?

Orders placed on or prior to March 10, 2015 will be mailed unless indicated differently by the customer. Orders placed after March 10, 2015 will be held at Will Call. For information on Will Call, please refer to What is Will Call and where is it located?

If you have not received your tickets within a few days of placing your order on or prior to March 10, 2015, or if your order arrives incomplete or is incorrect, contact the Film Festival Box Office by phone (877.304.3456) or email (tickets@clevelandfilm.org) and they will assist you.

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I lost my tickets. What should I do?

In the event you have misplaced your CIFF tickets, please contact the Film Festival Box Office (877.304.3456 or tickets@clevelandfilm.org) or visit them during hours of operation, in the lobby of Tower City Cinemas at the main box office. CIFF personnel will locate your ticket order in our system by order number or the last name of the purchaser.

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Can ticket purchases be refunded or exchanged?

Tickets are nonrefundable except in the case of a cancelled screening. The last day for refunds is March 29, 2015. Exchanges, when possible, will be subject to a $4 processing fee per order.

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I won vouchers. When will they be sent to me?

Vouchers and a 39th CIFF Program Guide will be mailed out to winners in early March 2015.

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What is the price of vouchers?

Vouchers are no longer available for purchase. Vouchers can only be obtained through CIFF membership benefits at certain levels, CIFF donations, or CIFF sponsorships/community partnerships.

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What is the difference between vouchers and tickets?

Tickets are reserved for a screening of a specific film with a specific screening time and date. Vouchers are non-specific and therefore, will not admit you to a film. Vouchers are not for purchase and must be exchanged in-person for tickets to specific screenings. Exchange as early as possible to avoid Stand By or sellouts!

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How do I purchase a gift certificate?

Gift certificates can be purchased online through our website on the Gift Certificates page, over the phone (216.623.3456 x10), or in person at our Business Office (2510 Market Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44113).

Gift Certificates are redeemable for CIFF events, tickets, membership, and merchandise. Gift Certificates are not redeemable for concessions.

To purchase a gift certificate through our website, follow these steps:

1. Click the SUPPORT US link located at the top right of the home page.

2. Select the Gift Certificates tab to access a list of available CIFF merchandise.

3. Enter the amount and select your preferred delivery method--paper or email.

4. Enter the recipient's information and where you would like the certificate sent to. Click ADD TO CART. A pop-up box will appear to confirm you have added items to your cart.

5. If you are done adding items to your cart, click go to cart on the pop-up box or click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page.

6. Review the order information to make sure it is correct, then click CHECKOUT NOW.

7. Enter your billing information and click CONTINUE.

8. Enter your payment information and hit PLACE ORDER.

You will receive an order confirmation number and a receipt will be sent via email, if provided.

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How do I redeem my gift certificate?

Gift certificates can be redeemed in person, through the mail, or online during checkout by entering the code located in the body of your email receipt or at the bottom of your paper certificate.

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CIFF Tweets

The #CIFF40 earlybird deadline is 8/31.Don’t miss out on crowds topping 100K & $85K in prizes! http://t.co/voVqQTNYpS http://t.co/hQLLa8DWmQ

4 days ago   .   Reply   .   Retweet   .   Favorite

CIFF Facebook Posts

ATTN FILMMAKERS: Our #CIFF40 earlybird deadline is coming up on Monday, August 31st. Don't miss out on more than $85K available in cash prizes and screening to the best audience in the world! Get full info on submitting your film today: http://www.clevelandfilm.org/call-for-entries

8 days ago   .   Link

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CIFF40 :: Save the Dates >

CIFF40 :: Save the Dates

CIFF40 will take place March 30 - April 10, 2016 at Tower City Cinemas and neighborhood screening locations!

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