Rules for the 50 Hour Challenge:

How do I receive my pre-ordered tickets?

All orders placed online will be available for pick up at the Fredonia Technology Incubator.

How do I purchase more tickets once I'm there?

When you pick up your tickets you can purchase more at that time. 

Do I need a ticket for film screenings and other events?

While tickets are required for all screenings, only certain panels/events will require tickets. Those panels/events will have a 'Register Here' link on the schedule page. 

How do I become a sponsor?

Fill out the form on the Contact Us page and select the sponsorship box. Someone will get in contact with you ASAP.

Can I volunteer to help during the festival?

Yes yes and yes! On the contact form select volunteer and someone will be in touch to let you know how you can help.

How much does it cost to participate in the 50 Hour Challenge?

 Prices range from $100 to $150.

How many people are required to make a team?

Teams can be as big or as small as you want! The only requirement is that anyone who helps is doing so on a volunteer basis.

Why would I want to participate in the 50 Hour Challenge?

Films have the chance to win prizes, be screened to a live audience and receive feedback from people in the film industry. Teams also recive 2 tickets to their film screening. Prizes vary from cash to product codes and donations from local businesses. Categories and prizes can be found here.

What do I need to participate in the 50 Hour Challenge?

You need access to something that can record (camera, smartphone, etc.), edit your footage (imovie, adobe, final cut, etc.), and anyone you want to share this intense and rewarding experience with.

Is the 50 Hour Challenge only for people with film making experience?

Of course not! All skill levels are welcome to participate in our 50 Hour Challenge.

What will these films be about?

Films can be about a wide variety of things spanning many different topics, it's up to the team to decide. Even the interpretation and use of this year's theme can be different between films. The Required Elements are the only things that the films will share.

Are there any filming location restrictions?

You may film anywhere you wish, so long as it occurs during the official competition time. Permission or a permit may be required to shoot in certain locations. There may be repercussions for not obtaining proper permissions.

Can my team use music and other materials that are a part of the creative commons?

You may use materials from the creative commons in your film, as long as they are attribution only. Materials from the creative commons may not be used in your film if the license is either non-commercial or sharealike.

What can I do with my film after it's done?

You are free to do with your film what you would like. You can submit it to another film festival, put it up online, or burn it to 100 DVDs and give them as presents. Just make sure that there are no violations of the agreement between the team and the Festival, and that either the opening or ending title card states the film was made for the 50 Hour Challenge.


Still have a question... 

Contact us and we will get you an answer!

Time Period:

All teams participating in the 50 Hour Challenge must create their film within 50 hours. This means starting at 7:30 pm EST on May 14th and ending at 10:00 pm EST on May 16th - this is the official competition time frame! Films must be delivered to assigned location before the deadline to be screened during the Festival.

Filmmaking Process:

The following must occur during the official competition time. Failure to comply will lead to disqualification.

-Writing the script

-Costume and set design 




-Sound design and special effects

-Rendering and exporting the final film

However the following may take place before the official competition time:

-Finding and organizing both cast and crew

-Obtaining any equipment needed to make and edit the film

-Scouting and securing locations 

Members of the Team:

All members of the team must be volunteers, no one is to be compensated for helping create the film. 

Teams are encouraged to reach out to individuals who can help compose music. The use of pre-recorded music is allowed, given that the team has permission and rights to use the music. The same applies to sound effects.


All footage must be created during the official competition time. No footage created before the official competition time can be used. Stock footage is only allowed as part of a post production effect (i.e. video on a screen in the background, or explosion) and must be placed on top of footage created during the official competition time. Teams must have the rights to the stock footage used. No stock footage of people or performers is allowed. 

Required Elements:

All films are required to include the following, exactly as assigned by the Festival:

-A line of dialogue - this can be spoken, sung, or written 

-A character who must be seen on screen and addressed by their name

-A prop

-Application of theme

These 4 elements will be annouced during film information, right before the official competition time begins. 

Film Length:

All films should be at least 3 minutes, but should not exceed 7 minutes. This does not include ending credits (up to a minute), and required opening and ending title cards.

The opening should include the following, in this order:

-5 seconds of black

-Team name, film name, year

-Title card: "This film was made for the 50 Hour Challenge, as part of the Fredonia Film Festival."

-2 seconds of black

The ending should include a title card saying the following: 

-"This film was made for the 50 Hour Challenge, as part of the Fredonia Film Festival. www.fredoniafilmfestival.com" 

Film Format:

Your film can be submitted online (the Festival will let you know where to upload your film) in each the following formats: MOV/MP4/MPEG-4. You can also submit your film on a USB drive or playable DVD, with no proprietary codecs included. Please make sure your film will play before submitting. 

Note: It's in your team and film's best interest to make sure the sound is fairly even. If there is uneven sound and/or peaks, the sound may be modified. Also keep in mind your color range, as the Festival cannot guarantee parts of your film that are dark will be visible when screened.


-Films must be the original work of the team that submits them, and only created during the official competition time

-Must be suitable for public viewing. This means no obscene, indecent, pornographic, or any material that is defamatory or invades the privacy of any person, company, organization, or entity

-Films must not violate any applicable laws and/or regulations, and must not contain any copyrighted material that the team does not have ownership of

-Films may not be screened or distributed to any parties besides the team itself, before it is screened during the Fredonia Film Festival. However trailers that are less than 60 seconds long are permitted and encouraged

Any films that do not meet these requirements, based upon the Festival's sole discretion, will be disqualified.


Teams will be responsible for filling out and submitting all required documents. This includes release forms for cast, crew, music, locations, etc. Films will not be screened if all documents have not been received. All documents will be sent via email to the email provided on the registration form.


Films that meet all requirements will be judged by persons involved in the entertainment/filmmaking industry, based upon the following criteria:

- 45% artistic and technical merit

- 25% use of required elements

- 30% use/interpretation of the theme


The Fredonia Film Festival reserves the right to add and or modify any rules listed here. The Festival, in its sole discretion, may disqualify any film that it deems to be inappropriate or otherwise non-compliant.