BFF’s 48 Filmmakers’ Challenge

Akron’s Bechdel Film Fest (BFF) is hosting a 48 Hour filmmaking contest and inviting experienced filmmakers and first-timers to join the fun. Teams will make an original film within 48 hours, starting Friday, March 22nd--and screen it in front of other participants on Sunday, March 24th. Teams are competing for FUN, awards, and maybe even the opportunity to screen their movie during the Bechdel Film Fest, May 29th-June 2, 2019.

There is no cost to enter but all the rules must be followed. You don’t have to live in Akron to participate but all who enter must attend the Kick-Off event on Fri. March 22nd--sometime between 6pm and 7:30 in order to fill out the required form and to receive the information on the required elements for each film entry. Participants MUST drop off their film entry no later than 7pm, Sunday March 24th at the screening event. You don’t have to stay for the screening of all the films, but you’ll miss the awards and seeing everyone else’s films.


The official time period for the BFF 48 Hour Filmmmakers’ Challenge is 7pm, Friday March 22, 2019 through 7pm Sunday March 24th.

--No creative work can be done prior to the official time period, including writing the script, rehearsing, costume/set design, editing, shooting, sound design, rendering, or outputting to DVD. The only efforts allowed to occur before the official time period are preparations, including organizing your cast, organizing your crew, securing the equipment, and scouting/securing locations. ALL footage must be shot during the official time period.

--Teams may consist of a minimum of one person. A maximum number of participants is not restricted. However, each team must have at least one representative present at the Kick-Off event on Friday, March 22nd, 6pm in the back room at the Nightlight Cinema (30 N High St, Akron, OH 44308). We will walk the teams through the rules, answer questions, receive the information about required elements, and each team will fill out a form to sign up and qualify for the awards. Each team must sign up at the Kick-Off event by completing the form or their film entry will not be accepted on Sunday. Sign-ups will take place between 6pm and 7:30pm on Friday March 22nd.

--There are required elements for each film entry. At the Kick-Off event, the teams will receive information about the required elements, which will include at least one line of dialogue, and a prop. The line(s) of dialogue must be included in each team’s film entry verbatim, and the prop must be clearly visible in the film as well. We also ask that each film entry pass the Bechdel Test--this means that film entries will include at least two female characters, they are given names, and they talk about something other than men or boys. This minimum standard of inclusion for female characters in films is still one that less than half of films typically meet. Film entries that fail to pass the Bechdel Test may still participate in BFF’s 48 Hour Filmmaker’s Challenge however, they are disqualified from all awards.

--You are not to steal other artist’s work--this is an illegal act. You must acquire all rights to music and sound used in your film entry. We encourage you to work with musicians during the official time period and acknowledge them in your credits.

--The running time of each film entry must be a minimum of 3 minutes and a maximum of 10 minutes. If film entries run one second longer, or one second shorter than these lengths, the films will be disqualified.

--All film entries will be accepted on a playable DVD only. We have limitations on the projector to be used at the Sunday event, and if your film isn’t viewable, it will be disqualified.

--All film entries must be received by BFF 48 Hour Filmmaker’s Challenge staff no later than 7pm, Sunday March 24th to qualify for the prizes and awards. You can drop off your completed film entry at the back room of the Nightlight Cinema between 6-7pm on Sunday March 24th, or text the number given at the Kick-Off event to make other arrangement

--BFF 48 Hour Filmmaker’s Challenge staff may, in their sole discretion, disqualify entries deemed to be inappropriate, offensive, or otherwise non-compliant.

--We ask that no film entries be distributed in any format, or on-line in any way prior to the Sunday March 24th submission deadline. We also ask that winners please refrain from distributing their film entries if they are invited to be screened at Bechdel Film Fest during May 29-June 2, 2019.


Teams will be competing for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize awards. Additional prize acknowledgements:

Filmmaker Awards:

Favorite Woman of Color Filmmaker

Favorite Woman Filmmaker with a Disability

Favorite Woman LGBTQIA+ Filmmaker

Favorite Woman Filmmaker over 50

Story Awards:

Favorite Film with Woman of Color Character(s)

Favorite Film with Woman Character(s) Over 50

Favorite Film with Woman Character(s) with a Disability

Favorite Film with LGBTQIA+ Character(s)

BFF 48 Hour Filmmaker’s Challenge staff reserve the right at our sole discretion to issue the “Favorite” awards, if we deem appropriate. Film entries may be invited to be screened during the Bechdel Film Festival, May 29th-June 2, 2019. Not all winners or film “favorites” may be invited.

GOOD LUCK! And, have fun :) We’ll see you at the Kick-Off event on Friday, March 22ndWoman IA+