Submit your short ocean-themed movie to the Beneath The Waves Film Festival


btwThe Beneath The Waves Film Festival is accepting submissions for the 2013 event. Now in it’s fourth year, Beneath the Waves encourages dialogue and networking between documentary filmmakers, conservationists, and scientists. As in past years, the film festival is associated with the Benthic Ecology conference, which is taking place March 20th-23rd in Savannah, Georgia. There will also be a series of mini-festivals touring around the world, including Europe, Asia, Africa, and all over the United States.

Beneath The Waves accepts submissions from filmmakers of any skill level, and both amateurs and students are encouraged to apply. Though underwater footage is not explicitly required, films must be about an ocean issue, and must be less than 15 minutes (under 10 minutes is preferable). Films can be submitted electronically or by mail, and are due February 1st. For more information about guidelines for submissions, click here.

Beneath the Waves director Austin Gallagher introduces the 2012 festival in Norfolk, VA.

Beneath the Waves director Austin Gallagher introduces the 2012 festival in Norfolk, VA.

I’ve been proud to be a part of the growing Beneath the Waves family since the beginning, first as a student filmmaker, and now as festival staff. I hope you’ll consider joining us! For more information about the festival, please visit

The Beneath the Waves Film Festival is touring the U.S. West Coast

Regular readers know that we are big fans of the Beneath the Waves Film Festival, which shows marine science and conservation movies (I’m actually a co-organizer). If you’ve been excited to attend the festival after reading about it on Southern Fried Science but haven’t been able to attend, this could be your chance. The flagship event takes place each March as part of the Benthic Ecology conference, but this year the festival has expanded to include a variety of public screenings throughout the country.

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Beneath the Waves Film Festival is this Friday, check out the official list of films

I am really excited to announce that our friends over at the Beneath the Waves Film Festival have made their official selections for the 2012 event to be held this Friday at the 41st Benthic Ecology Meeting in Norfolk, Virginia.Now in its third consecutive year, this unique student run science communication event solicits films from anyone, regardless of background, skill level, profession, or location—there is really just one criteria: a good story about the ocean.

 “The ocean needs a voice, and we want to provide a forum for people to tell those stories,” says film festival director and University of Miami graduate student Austin Gallagher.

This year the festival received an overwhelming number of submissions, and I was honored to sit on the pre-screening board. Films were screened for exhibition based on 4 categories: Originality, Strength of Message, Clarity of Narrative, and Production.

The official list of 27 marine films for this year’s event spans topics such as plastics, shark conservation, seal biology, deep sea discoveries, as well as films with leading marine ecologists telling the stories of their research. The list of films for the March  IMAX  event can be found here.  The official welcome video, which introduces this year’s films in a unique way, is below.

Beneath the Waves Film Festival: 2012 Intro Video from Triakis Films on Vimeo.

This spring and summer the film festival will embark on the “Shore Dive Series,” a series of touring dates open to the public in the US and abroad that will screen even more films that were submitted in addition to those selected for the Virginia event. Confirmed dates thus far include Seattle (July 13-15), Portland (July 20-22), and Los Angeles, CA (August 10-12), a west-coast tour in collaboration with the ocean/shark conservation organization PangeaSeed’s “The Great West Coast Migration.” For more information, see the film festival website.

Beneath the Waves Film Festival: Spectacular When Spotted

This year’s Beneath the Waves Film Festival was a huge success, and we’ve already started planning for next year. In the meantime, I’ll post some of the 2011 entries.

“Spectacular when spotted” follows a spotted eagle ray research project in Bermuda. It has some great footage of these amazing animals, and shows some field scientists at work. I hope you enjoy it! If you have any questions about the research or the film, post them as a comment and I’ll make sure that they get passed along to the filmmakers.


Submit to the Beneath the Waves Film Festival

I am excited to announce that I am now a part of the planning team for the 2nd Annual Beneath the Waves Film Festival!

This festival, which is associated with the Benthic Ecology conference, provides a unique opportunity for scientists and filmmakers to interact. Since the festival is part of a scientific conference, filmmakers will be able to get feedback from scientists, and even plan collaborations for the future. Scientists who make movies for fun will be able to ask professional filmmakers for tips.

Unlike many other film festivals, Beneath the Waves is free to enter, which makes it an ideal showcase for films by students, amateur naturalists, and starting filmmakers.

The focus is on marine/coastal/freshwater science and conservation issues. They must be shorter than 30 minutes, and we request that they be shorter than 20 minutes if at all possible. The submission deadline is January 15th, 2011.

Whether you’re a seasoned professional, a young filmmaker just getting started, or a scientist who has taken some cool video, the Beneath the Waves Festival is for you.

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