Festival Submissions

“Vidlings and Tapeheads film festival is an exuberant experience filled with fine films, music and art. Everyone involved made it a festival not to be missed. I would encourage everyone to apply if your film is unconventional, weird, brave!”
—Jesseca Ynez Simmons, VTFF2017 alum

The Vidlings & Tapeheads Film Festival is dedicated to promoting unconventional narrative film. Our fest features live music performances, an art exhibition, and of course — lots of films! VTFF will take place on Friday & Saturday, July 27th & 28th, 2018 and we’ll cap the weekend with a filmmaker and VIP-only Award Ceremony Brunch & Excursion on Sunday, July 29th.

We love films with a unique voice that tell stories in an unusual way, experiment with the medium, or sincerely explore eclectic subject matter and themes. We encourage and celebrate subversiveness, innovative use of materials and budget, and quirky independent work that doesn’t fit comfortably within any one genre.

VTFF films are often weird, cult, or niche, but they’re not random. We’re passionate about films that make the strange familiar and the familiar strange while telling a story. We connect with characters who are outsiders and dreamers—both in front of and behind the camera. And though filmmaking is a collaborative effort, we have an unabashed appreciation of the auteur. We love the the absurd humor and magical realism of Terry Gilliam and Jean-Pierre Jeunet, the irreverent sincerity and dysfunctional iconoclasm of John Waters and Jane Campion, the uncanny cleverness and dark mystery of Davids Cronenberg and Lynch, the tactile humanity and visceral goofiness of Jan Švankmajer and Stephen Chow, the timeless avant-garde dreamscapes of Maya Deren and Slavko Vorkapić, and the haunting beauty and moral ambiguity of Hayao Miyazaki.

We believe that filmmaking should be accessible to all and that content transcends medium. So we welcome all work whether it was shot on VHS, Super 8, an old iPhone, a DSLR, 35mm, or a 5K Red Scarlet. In fact, we have a special place in our hearts for so-called obsolete tech.

We do our best to curate a diverse and engaging program with a progressive group of unconventional filmmakers, musicians, and artists from Michigan and around the world. We strive to be inclusive and welcome people of all ages, genders, ethnicities, nationalities, creeds, orientations, and walks of life to submit!

How to Submit

The Vidlings & Tapeheads Film Festival proudly accepts entries via FilmFreeway.com, the world’s best online submission platform. FilmFreeway offers free HD online screeners, unlimited video storage, digital press kits, and more!


“Vidlings and Tapeheads blew me away! It was legit one of my favorite festival’s I’ve attended this year. This is a small festival. But while it may not have the glitz and glamour of the large Oscar qualifying festivals, it has the intimacy and charm that large festivals lack. Because it’s a smaller festival, you really get to know the filmmakers in attendance and the festival staff. They treat you with lots of Midwest hospitality: goodie bag, chocolate, a pizza party night, and lots of warm and fuzzy smiles. The festival also had a fantastic line up of bands, and an eccentric art show. The films were great and the audiences were passionate. I had an awesome Q&A, with an audience that was excited to ask questions and to meet the filmmakers. The festival was also well organized. Very few technical problems, on time, etc.

If you have an eccentric film with story, definitely submit to Vidlings and Tapeheads. Not only will you have memories and experiences to remember forever, but you will make relationships that may last a lifetime.”
—Anne Hu, VTFF2017 alum

Awards & Prizes

Awards will be selected by a jury of working filmmakers, film critics, and film scholars.

Jury: Best Fiction
Jury: Best Animation
Jury: Best Documentary
Jury: Best Made-in-Michigan
Best of Fest
Best of Fest (Student)

Our 2018 prize packages are still being developed. Last year we had prizes from Final Draft, Wacom, ProAm USA, Toonboom, and Transcend—just to name a few!

Rules & Terms

Submitted films must be no longer than 15 minutes and have been completed after June 1st, 2016.

The Vidlings & Tapeheads Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for public screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations.

The undersigned shall indemnify and hold harmless The Vidlings & Tapeheads Film Festival from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney’s fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.

For the rest of the rules and terms, please visit our festival submission page on FilmFreeway.

Wouldn’t you love to add these lovely laurels to your poster?