New Sponsors for Our Competitions!


Austin Film Festival Announces Partnerships with Sony Pictures Animation, Seed&Spark, New Form Digital, and Others for Screenplay, Film, and Scripted Digital Series Competitions

AUSTIN, Texas--March 5th, 2016--In order to further support its writers and filmmakers, Austin Film Festival, (AFF), also known as “The Writers Festival”, is pleased to announce new sponsors for its Screenplay, Film, and Scripted Digital Series Competitions. Sponsors will serve on the jury for their category and, schedules permitting, serve as panelists during AFF’s Screenwriters Conference and hold one-on-one meetings with finalists during or after the 23rd Annual Austin Film Festival, taking place this October 13-20.

  • The International Documentary Association (IDA) will be the official sponsor of AFF’s Academy Award®-qualifying Documentary Short Competition. The IDA supports documentarians from around the world through education, funding, advocacy, and audience cultivation through public events.
  • Digital entertainment company New Form Digital will serve as the official sponsor of AFF’s Scripted Digital Series Competition, a category that accepts both written and filmed series and celebrates talented voices that can translate their vision to an episodic format. New Form Digital develops, produces, and distributes original scripted series from storytellers that they continually discover and recruit.
  • POV, PBS’s award-winning documentary series, has once again signed on as the official sponsor of AFF’s Documentary Feature Competition. Created in 1988, POV’s programming features ground-breaking documentary storytelling, spotlighting works from established and up-and-coming filmmakers such as Jonathan Demme, Michael Apted, D.A. Pennebaker, Rachel Grady, and others.
  • Seed&Spark, the popular crowdfunding and distribution platform, will sponsor AFF’s Narrative Feature Film Competition. “Austin [Film Festival] makes an incredible effort to educate filmmakers, to create an environment where they can share the diversity of their experiences,” Seed&Spark Founder and CEO Emily Best said. “In the past, we've been huge beneficiaries of being able to connect with the incredible creators who attend the festival. We're very excited to expand the diversity of voices funneling in to Austin Film Festival with this competition.”
  • Sony Pictures Animation, the studio behind Hotel Transylvania 2, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, and The Smurfs will sponsor AFF’s Comedy Screenplay Category.

These organizations will join the already announced competition sponsors including:

  • Enderby Entertainment, co-founded by producers Rick Dugdale and Daniel Petrie, Jr., has their own exclusive category which is open to feature scripts in all genres with an original concept and distinctive voice that can be independently produced under $10 million.
  • Writers Guild of America, East is the underwriting sponsor of the Drama Screenplay Award category. Drama Finalist scripts will be judged by a select panel of WGAE screenwriters and the winner will be presented by a WGAE representative at the Awards Luncheon.

AFF is also proud to announce its continued partnership with Hiscox Insurance, who will once again serve as the official sponsor for AFF’s Audience Award, and will present the second Hiscox Courage Award to the film that best embodies the virtue of courage and to the filmmaker who best embraced the risk to share the story.

AFF is currently accepting entries for the 2016 Festival. Writers and filmmakers can submit their projects at The first deadlines are March 30th (Film), April 20th (Screenplay; Digital Series).

About Austin Film Festival

Austin Film Festival is a non-profit organization funded and supported in part by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts, City of Austin Economic Growth & Redevelopment Services Office/Cultural Arts Division believing an investment in the Arts is an investment in Austin’s future.


for Austin Film Festival Lauren Kelcher Stevenson, 512-646-0149