Women’s Voices Now Film Festival

Our Film Festival promotes women and femme-identifying filmmakers using social-change films to advocate for women’s and girls’ rights around the world.




Women’s Voices Now is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization using film to drive positive social change that advances women’s and girls’ rights globally. We promote, produce, and share social-change films focusing on women’s and girls’ rights issues, providing active support to filmmakers who give a voice to unheard women and girls, and activating civil society by moving audiences from empathy to action.

Our Film Festival promotes women and femme-identifying filmmakers using social-change films to advocate for women’s and girls’ rights around the world, by:

  • Providing a platform for emerging filmmakers telling essential, authentic stories
  • Supporting them with cash prizes and visibility
  • Connecting them with each other

Since 2011, our independent film festival has received 680+ impactful social-change films from more than 65+ countries, and brought them to millions of viewers around the world.

For the 2021 Festival we will award $10,000 in film festival prizes.

Submit your film from September 1st through December 31st, 2020, via Film Freeway for consideration in the 2021 Festival Competition.

October 21, 2020 – Early Bird Deadline

December 7, 2020  November 25, 2020REGULAR DEADLINE EXTENDED

December 31, 2020 – Late Deadline

We firmly believe that access is a critical barrier leading to the significant underrepresentation of women and women-told stories in film. Our priority is to ensure that access to financial resources does not limit any individual from submitting their film to our Festival. If you are unable to pay the submission fee, please reach out to us at wvnonlinefilmfestival@womensvoicesnow.org to request a fee discount or waiver. Please bear in mind that we are only able to provide a limited amount of fee waivers.


The Women’s Voices Now film festival seeks to address the significant lack of representation of women in film, as well as the lack of access to essential funding for women in film. To be accepted into the festival, your film must:

  • Address or shine light upon issues affecting women and/or girls through a social-change lens.

There is no time limit by which the film must have been completed, but preference will be given to relevant and salient subject matter.

For the complete Rules and Terms, Fees, and Festival Dates, visit Film Freeway.


Entries will be judged based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance of subject matter
  • Storytelling – use of structure and image to communicate a compelling story
  • Technical aspects of filmmaking

The winning films will be selected by a panel of judges with expertise and experience in film, women’s rights, and/or social impact.

Contact us if you would like to be considered for judging and/or want to learn more about our past judges.

Entry Categories

Documentary Feature | Documentary Short | Experimental/Animation Film | Youth


Leslie J. Sacks Grand Prize Award for Best Film – $3,000
Best Documentary Feature – $2,000
Best Short Social-Change Documentary* – $1,500
Best Documentary Short – $1,000
Best Director – $1,000
Best Experimental Film – $1,000
Best Youth Film – $500

*The award for Best Short Social-Change Documentary is sponsored by the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice. Thank you for your support!

Award recipients receive their prize money upon submitting a video recorded acceptance speech that will be uploaded to our website.