DTLA Film Festival Announces Call For Entries for 15th annual edition
Nov. 1-5, 2023 in downtown Los Angeles

Leading indie film showcase with an emphasis on diversity now accepting feature, documentary and short films for screening consideration

LOS ANGELES | August 25, 2023 – DTLA Film Festival – a leading showcase for independent film in the historic heart of the Film Capital of the World – announced today that its 15th annual edition will be held November 1-5 at Regal L.A. Live cinemas.

Submissions are now open for all genres of films as well as narrative feature, short film and TV-pilot screenplays: https://filmfreeway.com/DTLAFF

Known for its wide-ranging content and commitment to diversity, the festival has shown more than a thousand features, documentaries and shorts and other motion pictures over the past decade-plus. Produced by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the festival is dedicated to presenting the work of filmmakers traditionally underrepresented by Hollywood, notably women and people of color.

The festival also reflects in its programming choices the unique cultural and ethnic diversity of the neighborhoods of downtown Los Angeles and its surrounding Eastside communities (from South Central to Eagle Rock and East Hollywood to East L.A.). Since it was established in 2008, the festival has become the largest film event in DTLA.

“There are many film festivals in Los Angeles, but ours is one of the few that screens all genres with a focus on diversity and the only one in downtown — the city’s creative hub and historic core. While we all know that streaming is increasingly playing a role in the careers of filmmaking talent, our festival continues its dedication to showcasing films in theaters. Since most of the films we present will be having their Los Angeles premieres, this will be the first and, in many cases, the only opportunity to see them as they are intended to be seen – on the big screen of a cinema,” says Carolyn Schroeder, the festival’s Director of Programming.

In addition to its narrative feature and short film presentations, the festival is celebrated for its documentary film programing. In addition to entries from the many film students and professional filmmakers in Los Angeles, the festival receives hundreds of entries from around the world.

“We provide an opportunity for documentaries to be screened in Los Angeles, a goal of virtually all filmmakers no matter where they live. Our commitment to nonfiction filmmaking is unequivocal, perhaps best reflected in the fact that our two highest film honors, Best Picture and Audience Favorite, were awarded last year to the documentary films ‘The Rest of Us’ and ‘Low Rider Tradition,’ respectively,” says Michael Kuehnert, Senior Curator of Documentary Programming.

In regards to the festival’s continuing mission of diversity, a study released recently by USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative concluded that only 9% of the industry’s top-100 grossing films in 2021 were helmed by women, an actual decline by 4% from 2020, and only three were by women of color. At the same time, the number of Black, Asian, Hispanic/Latino and multi-racial and multi-ethnic moviemakers also fell from 27.3% in 2021 to 20.7% in 2022.

“There’s only one way to interpret this latest data about Hollywood’s lack of progress in diversity: We’re actually going backwards. While producing an independent film festival is always a challenge, we’ll continue with our mission of showcasing diversity in cinema as long as there’s a need,” said Henry Priest, Festival Co-Founder.

DTLA Film Festival is the successor to the late, great Silver Lake Film Festival, which was held annually between 2001 and 2008. Greg Ptacek, co-founder of both festivals, says that while the name and, to some degree, the location has changed, the festival for the past 20+ years remains dedicated to the same goal. “Ironically, while film technology has progressed by leaps and bounds over the past two decades, we continue to find ourselves fighting the same good fight when it comes to diversity in the industry. There’s still work to be done,” says Ptacek.

For more information about the 2023 DTLA Film Festival: www.dtlaff.com

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About DTLA Film Festival

Founded in 2008 as a nonprofit (501)(c)(3) arts organization, DTLA Film Festival is dedicated to showcasing films by and about groups underrepresented by Hollywood in the historic center of the Creative Capital of the World. The festival also strives to reflect in its programming the unique cultural and ethnic diversity of the neighborhoods of downtown Los Angeles and its surrounding communities. https://dtlaff.com

Press Contact:

Alisse Kingsley
Muse Media