How to Submit Your Film for Review


People have been ignoring the closed submission status and sending in requests during closed periods.  Up to this point, I’ve been lenient with it and just holding them for when submissions opened again, but this has been happening way too much lately.

Henceforth I will be disregarding ALL submissions send in during the closed submission period, and I WILL NOT be responding to them in any way.  They will simply be marked as read in my e-mail and ignored.

Submissions MUST be sent in during the open period so that it’s fair to everyone.  Trying to sneak in a request during the closed period isn’t fair to those who’ve been patiently waiting their turn.  One month I had so many submissions during the closed period that our open period only lasted a few hours for one day.

So if you submit anything during the closed period and don’t get a response, that’s why.  I tried to be nice and make sure that everyone got taken care of, but it’s gotten to the point where people are taking advantage of that, so I just can’t do it anymore.

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· I made my own independent film. Will you guys review it?

Yes! That’s what we’re all about! We love reviewing independent films and helping out the community in any way we can. Now, that’s not to say we’ll review every film out there. There are certain films we won’t cover.

Here’s what we won’t cover here on Rogue Cinema.

1. Films which promote a particular religious or political agenda. Most of the time these films are only telling one side of the story, and frequently they play a bit fast and loose with the facts in an effort to sell people on their point of view. We don’t have the time, nor the desire to fact check these films as we review them, so we simply just don’t accept them.

2. Films which are patently racist or anti-Semitic. If it’s in the context of satire or general humor, or its necessary to have some of this content in the context of the story then that’s ok, but we won’t cover things that are little more than hate filled racist or anti-Semitic rants.

3. It has to be an actual film that you’re trying to promote and do something with. So basically, we (probably) won’t be covering your experimental art film that you threw on YouTube for your friends to check out. Not that we’re opposed to reviewing stuff like this, but with the amount of screener requests we receive, we just can’t cover everything, and films that are distributed, looking for distribution or doing the festival circuit have to come first. It’s simply a workload issue for us.

4. It has to be an actual film…period. In other words, not an amateur home video of some live event with crappy sound and low quality video. If you have something like this you want reviewed, YouTube has a comments section where people will be happy to tell you what they think of it.

Pretty much everything else is fair game. If you have any question at all about whether your film will be accepted, just contact the editor.

· How do I submit my film to you for review?

The very first thing to do is to check the Contact and Submissions block on the side of the website here to see if film submissions are currently open for the month, or whether they’ve been closed until the following month. We have a great writing staff, but we can only handle so many films per month without getting overloaded and burned out. Once that number has been reached, submissions for the month will be closed, and then re-opened the following month after the new issue comes out.

Please do not send e-mails requesting a review for your film during the closed period. The only response you’ll get is that our submission status is currently closed, and to please contact us again with the request after the first of the month. If I simply stored these requests and handled them after the first of the month, over time we’d end up buried under a back log of requests that we’d never be able to cover. As much as we’d like to take care of everyone, we’re only human. The open / closed submission status can also be checked at any time on our Facebook page. The header graphic, on the bottom right corner, will have the current status listed.

Contact the editor at and let him know that you have a film that you’d like to have reviewed. He’ll arrange for one of the staff writers to do the review and then send you the reviewer’s mailing address. Please include the url to the film’s website (if applicable) in your request and make sure that the screener you want to send us meets the submission guidelines.

What to include with your submission request:

1. The name of the film, a short synopsis and a link to the film’s website or Facebook page.

2. Is it DVD, blu-ray or an online screener?

3. If it’s an online screener, you must include the URL to the screener in your initial request mail. Don’t simply ask if we want to review it and then provide the link later, as this causes a delay in getting the film assigned to one of our writers, and your review slot may be taken up by someone else in the mean time.

Do not put in a request to have your online screener reviewed if the link you send us will expire. We will not review time limited screeners.

· What are the requirements for submission?

If you would like your film reviewed by Rogue Cinema, please read and understand the following guidelines before contacting us about a review.

All submissions except for web based content must be sent on DVD or blu-ray media only. If you’re going to be sending a blu-ray, be sure to specify that to the editor so he can direct it to one of our reviewers who is blu-ray capable.

Film submissions MUST be out of post production and fully completed. We will not review incomplete versions of a film as the final version could vary from the review version, which would then render our review inaccurate.

Submissions should be in final production form and packaging whenever possible. If a full production package of a film is available including case and cover, then that is the copy that must be sent to us for review. We will no longer accept burned, generic screener copies in jewel cases or sleeves if a full production copy is available. If however a full production copy is not available, then we will still happily accept burned DVD-R screeners.

Also, if we receive a film to review that was not pre-arranged with us in advance, we may or may not review it at our discretion. It’s very important that you communicate with us prior to sending ANY material in for review, as the films are sent to different people. There is no single address to send your submission to. You contact the editor (me) and I’ll tell you who to send your film to for the review. This allows us to control who the film is sent to, which allows me to make sure that none of my reviewers become buried under a stack of screeners they can’t keep up with.

We really do our best to make sure that everyone who submits to us is taken care of, and we take pride in the fact that we’ve helped so many independent film makers get the word out about their films. Please help us to continue on as smoothly as possible with our work by following these simple guidelines.

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Press copies are ok as long as any indications that it’s a press copy are limited to the DVD label, title menu or a message that appears before the film actually starts. Press copies must NOT contain any messages, flashing or otherwise during the film stating that it is a press copy.

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The reason for this is that we actually had a submission like that once. It ran big text letters across the bottom of the screen all the way through the film, which was not only highly distracting, but highly annoying.

If you send us a screener that doesn’t follow these submission guidelines, we reserve the right to reject the screener at our discretion. Rejected screeners that did not follow the submission guidelines will not be returned to the sender.

We absolutely do not want to have to reject any screeners, so please, if you have any questions, feel free to ask and we’ll do our best to work with you.

· I don’t have a DVD of my film, but I did release it on the web in streaming video format? Will you still review it?

Yes! We have reviewed films released this way before. Some people who aren’t worried about selling an actual disc and just want as many people as possible to see their film prefer to release their work in this manner. Just send us the URL and all the pertinent info and we’ll do the review.

NOTE: I’ll say it again.  ALWAYS include the online screener link and password in your initial review request. Do not simply ask if we’d like to review it and then wait for an answer before sending that information.

· I see that you interview lots of film makers. Will you do an interview with me?

Generally the answer is yes. If we like your film, we’d be more than happy to do an interview with you about it. Even if we don’t like it so much but realize the talent and dedication was there in making it, we may still interview you. In those cases, the interview and the review are two separate things, so even if your film got a bad review, nothing in the interview questions will allude to that fact at all. It will be an informational interview only. We like to help people promote their films, so even if we didn’t like it, we’re sure there are probably some people out there who would.  If you’re not asked to do an interview though, please don’t be offended. We can only do so many a month, and with the number of screeners we get, it makes it hard to keep up with everyone.