2022 Festival - Cleveland Horror Fest
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Cleveland Horror Fest returns to Atlas Cinemas in Shaker Square with new dates–this December 2nd – 4th , 2022 in Cleveland.

This three day event will showcase independent horror films from around the world (feature films, shorts, and everything in between), playing on two screens throughout the event weekend. We are also accepting horror genre screenplays of all lengths for our screenplay competition–top screenplay submissions will be showcased as a directed table read during the festival.

In addition, we’ve lined up some great workshops and fun events, covering screenwriting, special effects, distribution/sales agents, and movie trivia. Come out for the whole weekend, or pick and choose which events you’d like to attend–just be prepared for plenty of great horror, and a fun time for all!

Films and screenplays will be judged by a panel of industry professionals for a variety of awards.

Can’t attend in person? We will also be streaming the films online via Sparqfest, an excellent online platform that brings independent films right to you at home via computer or mobile device, or to your television via Roku or Apple TV.

Submissions are currently open! We are seeking independent films and screenplays in all genres of horror, including (but not limited to): slasher, haunted house/location, android/robot, asylum/insanity, sci-fi horror, B-movie, psychic powers, cannibalism, supernatural, escape room, horror with kids, dark comedy horror, cult, found footage, mad scientist, funhouse/freaks, serial killer, Lovecraftian, phobia/isolation, cursed toy/object, home invasion, mummy/werewolf, psychological horror, virus, monster/creature feature, zombie, body horror, witchcraft, clown, gore/splatter, and dark mystery thriller.

Cleveland Horror Fest is produced by the Cleveland Film Collective and Brian Jeffery Bowers. Brian has worked most of his life in the entertainment industry, as an actor for stage and screen, a festival/event producer, photographer, filmmaker, talent agent, and more. He worked for over a decade as Assistant Director of Operations for the global 48 Hour Film Project, the world’s largest timed film competition, and is the founder of Gorilla Film School and the Cleveland Film Collective.

Rules & Terms

All films/screenplays must be genres of horror (we do want to scare people)–this is including but not limited to slasher, haunted house/location, android/robot, asylum/insanity, sci-fi horror, B-movie, psychic powers, cannibalism, supernatural, escape room, horror with kids, dark comedy horror, cult, found footage, mad scientist, funhouse/freaks, serial killer, Lovecraftian, phobia/isolation, cursed toy/object, home invasion, mummy/werewolf, psychological horror, virus, monster/creature feature, zombie, body horror, witchcraft, clown, gore/splatter, revenge, mystery/thriller, fantasy horror and dark mystery thriller.

Filmmakers must own or have licensed the rights to music, characters, stories, and any other elements that are part of the film.

By submitting, you are agreeing to having your film screened theatrically during the festival, and online via Sparqfest (for a limited time only/for paid festival attendees/secure online platform)

Submit any playable file format for consideration. If accepted, we will play the highest resolution/best version of your film you have available.

We may use short clips, trailers, photos, and other marketing materials you provide to help promote your film and the overall festival.

If accepted into the festival, we may also screen your film locally (greater Cleveland area) at different free or paid screenings and events for a period of one year after the festival.

While there are no screening fees for films that play during the festival, we will pay filmmakers a small screening fee if their film is screened during a paid event after the festival. Half of the profit from any paid screenings/events (post-festival) will be divided amongst the films screening and paid out to those filmmakers. More details will be provided to filmmakers if/when those sorts of events come up.

If you are accepted into the festival, we will do our best to promote your film/screenplay and work during the festival and throughout the year. Any marketing materials that you can provide will help, including press releases, images, trailers, posters/graphics, and links to websites/bios/social media, etc.

While our preference is to screen as many new and/or undistributed films as possible, we are accepting films that have been screened at other festivals, currently have distribution deals, etc.

If you cannot afford to pay the full submission fee, please contact info at clevelandhorror dot com to let us know what you can afford to pay. While submission fees are an important part of revenue for the festival, we are sensitive to the many costs involved in filmmaking.

Our goal is to get the best quality films, and to produce a great event. By paying the full submission fee or even a portion of it, you are helping us to promote you and the the work of other independent filmmakers from around the world.

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