Submissions are now closed.

Submit your film via FilmFreeway here. [Closed for 2021]
Have any questions? Email


Films must be directed by a person who identifies as Black, as indigenous, or as a person of color (POC), from anywhere in the world. Work must feature persons of color or tell a story of Black, indigenous, or POC experience.


  • January 15, 2021 – Submissions Open
  • February 10, 2021 – Early Deadline
  • March 8, 2021 – Preferred Deadline
  • March 31, 2021 – Final Deadline
  • May 3, 2021 – Notification Date


Rules & Regulations


Narrative feature films and documentary films must not exceed running time of 120 minutes.

Shorts must not exceed running time of 40 minutes.

Entry Fees

Entry fees are per film and non-refundable. BlackStar reserves the right to disqualify a submission, without refund of any kind, if eligibility requirements are not met including if eligibility status changes post-submission.

Students: Entry fees for student submissions will be waived upon receipt of a photocopy of a current and valid student ID card or a letter from an accredited school that verifies enrollment. Please send appropriate documents to to wave your fee.


Films will be automatically entered into juried competition unless the entrant(s) request to be withdrawn. Entrants must make this request at the time of application.

Awards & Prizes
• Best Feature Narrative & Documentary
• Best Short Narrative & Documentary
• Best Experimental
• Audience Awards



Entrants must fully comply with these entry rules and regulations, including all deadlines, film length, entry material and other requirements.

  • Works-in-progress
  • Submission Limits
  • Feedback
  • Festival Pass
Submissions may be a work-in-progress; however, works that are not final cuts must be clearly marked “Work in Progress (WIP)” or “Rough Cut” with an indication of what will change or what is missing (e.g., temp sound, missing animation, etc.). The deadline to receive the final print is June 12, 2021.
Submission Limits
There is no limit to the number of films you can submit. Please fill out separate entry forms and pay entry fees for each film.
Due to the high volume of submissions, we are unable to speak individually to applicants.
Festival Pass
All accepted directors will receive one (1) all-access badge to the festival. Additionally, each director will receive a minimum of two (2) comp tickets to their film screening to distribute as they see fit.
  • Year of production
  • Premiere Status
  • Travel to the Festival
Year of production
Priority is given to recently completed films (in 2020 and 2021).
Premiere Status
Preference is given to Philadelphia premieres at minimum, but premiere status is not required.
Travel to the Festival
The 2021 festival will most likely be an online event. Stay tuned for more updates as we near closer to August.