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Surrounded by mountains that push up through the ground like gargantuan knuckles dusted in green and gold, Crested Butte is a quiet mining town turn ski haven that has been secretly brewing up one of the best small film festivals in the United States.
— Greg Hamilton, MovieMaker Magazine

At the Crested Butte Film Festival, we believe in the transformative power of film. Founded in 2010 by two adventurous filmmakers and film-lovers, our organization is on a mission to move people to move the world.

Nestled among towering mountains and golden aspen trees, our intimate and free-spirited festival inspires, awakens, and activates attendees through an engaging setting of quality screenings, walkable venues, stimulating discussions, and authentic connections.

In alignment with our organizational mission, we curate bold, visceral, high-quality films that activate real emotion and invite personal, social, and environmental transformation.

Always held during the last weekend of September, the four-day event encompasses three walkable venues and the screening of 90 films spanning the genres of narrative, documentary, outdoor adventure, children’s, and short films. Additional programming sprinkled throughout the festival includes panel discussions, lively parties, and other social networking events.

Crested Butte Film Festival was recently named by USA Today’s Go Escape Magazine as “one of the top five fall film festivals in North America” and MovieMaker Magazine dubbed us "one of the best small film festivals in the United States."

Attending filmmakers are provided with an All-Access VIP Pass, lodging accommodations, and a bike to ride for the weekend (the preferred mode of transportation in our little mountain town).

At the Crested Butte Film Festival, you are sure to be inspired by the transformative power of stories while fostering incredible connections in an atmosphere of spontaneity fueled by great films, shared experiences, bikes, hikes, and magical mountain scenery.

Crested Butte Film Festival has almost anything a filmmaker could want. On top of the scenic beauty that surrounds it, the festival is a creative vortex of top-notch programming and community building opportunities that provide excellent opportunities to see new films and network with your peers...CBFF’s overall programming is an exceptional mix of personal films that fold together some of the best narrative and documentary selections on the festival circuit.
— Greg Hamilton, MovieMaker Magazine
What. A. Festival. I’ve never had, and could not imagine a better film fest experience. From the organizers to the volunteers to the people that come to see the films, there simply isn’t a more authentic, excited and loving group of people anywhere else. Everything about this fest is conducive to having a great time and meeting great filmmakers. Not to mention, Crested Butte is one of the most stunning places to see in the country. You can’t really explain it, you just have to go. Huge thanks to everyone at CBFF for an unbelievable experience!
— Hugo Cordova, Filmmaker

Genius. Artistry. Creation. A new way of telling a story. A location we’ve never seen. Something we’ve never thought of or imagined. And humor goes a long long way with us. Simply put, the best in narrative, documentary, short, outdoor adventure and children's films.

Town: Crested Butte is a historic mining town turned tourist destination with world class skiing, biking, hiking, and boating.   
Size: At just six by ten blocks with a year-round population of only 1800 people, Crested Butte is a small town that's packed with local character.  
Altitude: A true mountain destination at 8,885 feet above sea level.
Beauty: We're literally surrounded by mountains. Think epic panoramic vistas with snowcapped peaks and dazzling golden aspen trees.   
Fun: Off the charts. Parties, bike parades, delicious food, craft rum, local brews, and plenty of magically spontaneous moments.  

Known as a “filmmakers festival,” we strive to create an atmosphere of inspiration through well-attended screenings, high-quality programming, stimulating panel discussions, and opportunities for authentic engagement. We have a passion for discovering great first films and a desire to nurture the careers of young and emerging filmmakers. All venues are within easy walking distance and events are designed to foster lasting connections and partnerships among attendees, filmmakers, and industry professionals.

Festival co-director Michael Brody and award-winning filmmaker Marcelo Mitnik, from Argentina. Photo credit: Siena Pinney

Festival co-director Michael Brody and award-winning filmmaker Marcelo Mitnik, from Argentina. Photo credit: Siena Pinney

Just about everything distinguishes Crested Butte Film Festival from other festivals - from the programmers’ joy of cinema, to the warmth of the staff and volunteers, to the genuine enthusiasm of the local community, to its grand, majestic setting. Hands down, Crested Butte is one of the best film festivals I’ve ever attended. I cannot wait to come back to Crested Butte. CBFF is a treasure, and should be at the very top of any filmmaker’s list of festivals to attend.
— Marcelo Mitnik, Award-winning Director, In The Clouds (En Las Nubes)

Always "the last weekend of September” - our 2019 dates are September 26 - 29

All filmmakers will be notified via email on or before July 1, 2019     

Read more about our AWARDS AND PRIZES.   

Submission Information & Dates

  • We are open for submissions from December 1, 2019 through April 10, 2019

  • We accept all lengths of film, all genres, in all languages (foreign language films must have English subtitles)

  • Your film does not need to be a premiere to be considered

  • We extend a limited number of fee-waivers per year

  • Please do not send a press kit or stills until film has been accepted


Submit on Withoutabox

This festival is centered around giving people an unforgettable experience and exhibiting films in a way that benefits the filmmakers and gives the audience a great chance to interact. Between the delightful venues, the cozy town, the fabulous parties and the great new friends, this immediately became my favorite festival. I can’t wait to come back.
— Darian Brunetti, Filmmaker

A fantastic, politically and cinematically progressive film festival with some of the friendliest and warmest people around. Michael, Jennifer and their team have enormous heart, which is contagious in such a close-knit community. And it’s situated in the stunningly beautiful mountains of Colorado.
— Amy Gellar, Filmmaker

One of the best festivals in the world!!! A place that inspires, where filmmakers are revered and come together to share their stories. It’s a place that recalls a time past where community mattered above all else. A place for friendships to be forged and where stories are experienced rather than told. A must go on the festival circuit!
— Rich Henrich, Director of Film 4 Change and the AMFM Film Festival

Films have the power to bring people together, which is now more important than ever.
Thank you for submitting your film to Crested Butte Film Festival. We’re excited to see it.