Welcome 2017 Filmmakers!

Congratulations on your film’s selection for the eighth annual San Francisco Dance Film Festival, October 19-22 at the Brava Theater Center in San Francisco’s Mission District. We are thrilled to be presenting your work. Click here to download your 2017 Official Selection Laurels.

To finalize your entry, please complete the following steps:

1. Fill Out Official Selection Form

The Official Selection Form will be used to market and promote your film both on our website and to the media. Please fill out the form as accurately as possible.

CLICK HERE to complete your Official Selection Form by Friday, July 14.

2. Submit Exhibition Copy

We’ll need an exhibition copy of your film along with a trailer (for films over 30 min). Films must be received no later than August 1, 2017. If you are delivering a Live Performance Capture or a VR work, you will receive a separate e-mail with exhibition specs specific to your category.

See Technical Specifications section below for details on format and delivery.

3. Spread The Word

Help us promote your work. To enhance our outreach efforts to national and local media, we encourage all filmmakers to help spread the word about the festival via social media. Nothing beats personal invitations from filmmakers when it comes to packing a house. Together we can make this an exceptional event that draws new audiences to your work and deepens ties within our rich dance and film communities.

To ensure a coordinated launch of our 2017 festival, please DO NOT ANNOUNCE that you have been selected to screen at SFDFF 2017 until August 15.

4. Attend & Participate

We would be honored to have you attend the festival in San Francisco and participate in a filmmaker Q & A after your program. If you plan to join us please CONTACT US mail_small so that we may personally welcome you and answer any questions you may have. We will also notify the press and fellow filmmakers of your attendance. The full schedule will be posted to the website in mid August.

For those attending, further information is provided below:

  • Travel & Accommodation

    We would be happy to provide a personalized letter of invitation if you plan to seek funding to cover your travel and accommodation. Unfortunately we don’t have the budget to cover these costs, but will provide options for local hotels.

  • Passes & Discounts

    We are pleased to offer attending filmmakers ONE full festival pass ($150 value), which will permit free entrance for one representative of your film to all festival programs and events. You will also receive a 20% discount on any additional passes or single tickets for cast & crew. We’ll send instructions on claiming your passes and discounts when our sales open.

Thanks again for contributing your work. We hope to see you in San Francisco!

Technical Specifications for Submitting Your Film

Please send exhibition copies of your film and trailer (for films over 30 min) absolutely NO LATER THAN AUGUST 1. Upon receipt of your files our editor will begin putting together our festival trailer. As well as receiving significant traffic online, last year’s trailer has been screened at multiple events across the country and internationally—so get your film in early for the strongest chances of it being represented!

Format Requirements

  • Films should be submitted in their native frame rate in the QuickTime format using one of the following codecs: ProRes, ProRes HQ, or ProRes 4444.
  • Blu-ray may be sent as an additional option for films over 20 minutes ONLY. A ProRes file will also be required as backup.
  • Our venue does not accept DCP.
  • Films with a surround mix should be downmixed to stereo.
  • The audio track should be at least 16 bit, 48kHz uncompressed (e.g. LPCM). Do not use a compressed format for your audio (e.g. AAC).
  • Do not include any leaders, color bars or tones. Please remove any promotional text.
  • Films should be progressive scan. Interlaced films will need to be de-interlaced before submitting.
  • If your film is low contrast or contains scenes with fog/smoke/dust, you might notice banding when outputting the film as a ProRes or ProRes HQ file. Exporting your film as ProRes 4444 should address this issue.
  • We do not accept H.264 files. Transcoding your film from an H.264 master to ProRes is also not acceptable. Exporting directly to ProRes (HQ/4444) from your editing software ensures the highest visual fidelity for your exhibition master.
  • For documentary films, if your film is in a language other than English, please deliver with English subtitles burned into the final copy.

Delivery Options


  • You will soon receive an e-mail from Dropbox with an invitation to upload your film to a private folder created exclusively for you.
  • The invitation to upload will expire on August 1, so please send your film before the deadline.
  • File size is limited to 20GB.
     Other Online Storage Services

  • If you’d prefer to use an alternative delivery method, please email to let us know how it will be sent.
  • If you already have an account with an online storage provider, such as WeTransfer, feel free to use that account to deliver your film to Alex Irwin (alex@sfdancefilmfest.org)
  • You can also share your film via FTP.

Upload Troubleshooting & Tips

  • Uploading your film may take several hours or even a day or two depending on the speed of your Internet connection. To ensure that the film uploads as quickly as possible, please disable your computer’s ability to go to sleep. If you are using a laptop, be sure to have it connected to AC power.
    • On a Mac, you can do this by going to System Preferences > Energy Saver > Power Adapter (if applicable) > Computer Sleep: Drag the slider to Never.
    • On a PC, you can find directions on how to disable sleep here for Windows.
    • Be sure to re-enable sleep once your file finishes uploading.
  • Ideally, you should upload your film on an Internet connection with an upload speed of 1 Mbps or higher. To determine the speed of your Internet connection, you can test it here: www.speedtest.net (make sure to not have any file transfers running while you do the test). If your upload speed is less than 1 Mbps, try moving your laptop closer to your wifi router or plug it in via an ethernet cable (if possible) and run the test again. If your upload speed is still less than 1 Mbps, you might experience a long upload time for your file. If you have access to a local university, you could try uploading your film there (universities and businesses generally have good internet connections). If not, you could try uploading your film and if the upload fails, see below for how to send your film via a USB flash drive.
      USB Flash Drive

  • If you have issues uploading your film due to large file size or slow internet connection, you might want to consider mailing us a copy of your film on a USB flash drive.
  • We can cover return postage on small thumb drives only. We cannot return large drives.
  • Please include a note with film title, total run time, contact information and whether you would like the drive returned.
  • Please contact our Technical Director Ben Estabrook (ben@sfdancefilmfest.org) if you have any issues sending your film on a USB drive.
    San Francisco Dance Film Festival
    601 Van Ness Avenue, Suite E426
    San Francisco, CA 94102

    NOTE: For international mailings, write on the customs form: “Film for festival use. No commercial value”.

Please be sure to keep us updated if there are any changes to your film’s link or password. Your exhibition copy must have the same total run time as the screener you submitted. If you must make adjustments in length, please notify us of the change immediately. Even slight changes can make a difference in our very tight program placement.

Our Technical Director Ben Estabrook will be sure your film looks and sounds fantastic. Please CONTACT HIM mail_small with any technical questions about our format requirements or upload issues.