The Traverse City Film Festival and its sponsor FIM Group invite filmmakers of all ages and experience levels to enter the eighth annual Traverse City Film Festival Bumper Contest for a chance to win cash prizes, including a Grand Prize of $1,000. Winners will be shown during the 13th Annual TCFF, which returns July 25–30 for a six-day cinema extravaganza in downtown Traverse City.

A wonderful opportunity for aspiring and enthusiastic filmmakers looking to strut their stuff, bumpers are 20- to 60-second short films designed to play before festival feature presentations. Submissions are not limited to specific themes, but winning submissions often:

  • Tell a story. Narratives are usually more engaging than artistic shots or promotional ideas alone.
  • Focus on the festival attendee experience and things that are unique to the TCFF.
  • Have high production values. Make sure your great idea can be seen and heard.
  • Use humor, animation, and/or parody of famous films.

The film festival audience is diverse, so humor and references should be accessible. Keep the pacing fast and tight, and pay careful attention to lighting and sound clarity. And of course, have fun and entertain us! You can check out all of last year’s winners here.

Winners will be contacted after the jury makes their decisions, and will be announced in late July.

Entries must be submitted via email by July 6, 2017, to For complete details about the contest, including the fine print, visit

                                                  —Press Release provided by Traverse City Film Festival

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Photo(s) by Taylor Brown