Where to find the Best Film Festivals in America

Film festivals have been a part of the entertainment industry since the 1920s, when the Hollywood film scene was booming. The US movie industry is the most popular in the world. Therefore, it is not a surprise that there are some of the best festivals where we can watch the most recent titles.

The top three – Venice, Cannes, and Berlin – take place outside of the United States, but America touts some heavy-hitting festivals of its own throughout the country. If you prefer watching movies and you are planning to travel across the United States, here are some popular places where you can enjoy watching movies as well.

Park City, Utah


The most prominent American festival is the annual Sundance Film Festival, where more than 10,000 short and feature-length documentaries and narrative films by independent filmmakers are submitted for consideration.

What was once a low-profile gathering is now a premier event filled with celebrities and paparazzi, as well as many other events surrounding the main festival.

The Park City Music Festival is popular, with a special emphasis on film music.


According to, people are drawn to the Peach State for its Southern charm, history, affordable houses for rent in Atlanta, Georgia, and a rich cultural scene. Film lovers will enjoy the incredible amount of film festivals throughout the year that hit upon a variety of genres.

The Atlanta Film Festival is one of the largest and longest continuously running festivals in the nation, and is one of the 20 Academy-qualifying festivals for narrative, animated, and documentary shorts.

Outside of this are culturally-geared festivals like the Latin American Film Festival, Cinema Italy Atlanta, and African Film Festival. Horror buffs will love the Buried Alive Film Fest, and sci-fi lovers can take in the Atlanta Sci-Fi Film Festival.

Austin, Texas

The Austin Film Festival, founded in 1994, is unique in that it throws the spotlight on writers’ contributions to the world of film. It was originally called the Heart of Film Screenwriters Conference. These folks are often overlooked in the industry, yet at integral parts of film.

The city is also shared with the SXSW Film Festival that takes places months later and runs alongside the SXSW Conference, Music, and Comedy festivals. Some notable world premieres that took place there include notable world premieres include “Chef,” “21 Jump Street,” “The Cabin in the Woods,” and TV series “Girls” and “Silicon Valley.”

New York, New York

The New York Film Festival was started by the Film Society of Lincoln Center in 1963 and is one of the longest-running and most prestigious film festivals in the country.

The Main Slate, or primary section of the festival, features 25 to 30 feature-length films that are a mix of independent and studio projects.

Other sections include Spotlight on Documentary for non-fiction pieces; Revivals and Retrospectives for restorations and re-releases; Shorts; Projections, for experimental films; and Convergence, which is a program for interactive and transmedia storytelling.

Santa Barbara, CA

Those who tend towards global films for enjoyment won’t want to miss the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. It includes films from Nordic regions, Israeli talents, as well as Latin American and Asian filmmakers.

The festival is an Academy-Award qualifying chance, and the festival has a lineup of more than 200 films with approximately 10,000 people attending each year from around the globe

Palm Springs, CA

This is one of the most famous places and holds a high status as one of the festivals where you can see titles from the best productions. Besides the Hollywood releases, there are movies from other countries presented here as well.

There is also a contest for the best foreign movie. It is only a level under the Oscar awards, and a lot of big titles are presented here as an introduction to the main event.

Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles is home to many movie festivals and other events. The reason why California has so many of them is that a lot of big productions are settled there, especially in Hollywood. The Film Festival is an event where you can see around 200 titles.

The difference is that the genres are feature movies, shorts, documentaries, and music videos. Also, the great thing about visiting the Film Festival in LA is the area where you can check a lot of art places.

Ann Arbor, Michigan

In case that you want to see something unique and different when compared to mainstream productions, we suggest you visit Michigan during March when you can attend the Ann Arbor Festival. Most of the movies here are presented by independent productions and the alternative culture.

There are over 150 movies introduced from all over the world, and the focus is on alternative genres, fiction, animation, new ideas, and more. There is also a part of the event where experts are choosing the best short movie.

Ashland, Oregon

While there are hundreds of movie events where you can see some of the most recent releases, only around 20 of them are granted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science. The event in Ashland is one of them.

If you are interested in this event, you should visit Oregon in April. It lasts for five days, and nearly 100 titles are presented during that time. Moreover, you might have a chance to see some of the best producers and actors since this event is very popular among professionals.

Nashville, Tennessee

Another great event that you can visit during April is the Nashville festival. It holds a high status for a long time, and you will have a chance to see some famous actors here as well. Moreover, the focus is on the popular productions and new titles, along with all popular genres. There is also a special focus on musicals. The event lasts for ten days.


The United States represents a base of the movie industry. Hollywood is a leader in the world. Besides the most popular productions, you can also see some alternative views and new creations. The best part is that there is some movie event in almost any time of the year.