168 Film Project Contest Rules for 2015

All producers will sign the 168 Film Project Entry Agreement and Warranty document, and the License document as a condition of participation.


The full "Official Rules" document is available in the Producer Dashboard. To read the full rules document prior to entry, please contact us.

Below, please find a summary of the rules.

Eligibility and Entry Summary

  • All teams, worldwide, are eligible to participate and may consist of any number of individuals.
  • Teams are required to designate one primary producer as the team's agent or “signing producer” (the "Entrant").  This Entrant will be the primary contact with 168 and will sign the entry agreement, agree to these Rules and the Warranties and Licensing Agreement, and execute all necessary release forms for the submitted Film. There can only be one Entrant on record per film entry. The Signing Producer "Entrant" assumes all legal responsibility for the film's content, its production, and the safety of the cast and crew.
  • Individuals who are employees or board members of 168 are not eligible to participate on a team.
  • Student Teams must be headed by an individual age 18 or older.
  • 168 reserves the right to bar any team or individuals from the competition or exhibition.
  • Producers may submit multiple film entries in the same or different film type categories. However, each film, is considered a separate entry and requires that a separate Entry Fee be paid. Further, entries may be capped as deemed necessary by 168 Film Project ("168"), the organizer and operator of the Project.
  • ONLY ONE TEAM PER USER ID. If registering more than one team, producers must create a separate ID on this site.
  • To enter, teams must (1) pay the Entry Fee and (2) agree to abide by the rules.  A Contract and Warranty/Licensing form (downloaded from the purchase acknowledgement page) must be signed submitted within 5 days of entry purchase.
  • Cancellation Refunds: A team may cancel its entry registration any time by notifying 168 in writing. Refunds of entry fees will be made according to this schedule:
    • Cancellation up to 30 days before Verse Assignment - full entry fee refunded
    • Cancellation less than 30 days before Verse Assignment - No refunds
    • Team registrations are NOT transferable. 
  • Actors in multiple films:
    • Actors may appear in more than one film per season.
    • Actors appearing in more than two films in the season will be ineligible for acting awards

Entry Process (Step-By-Step)

  1. Click the ENTER button to purchase entry.
  2. Please use your existing login username and password if you have already joined 168 or you participated last year.
  3. Your TEAM NUMBER will be communicated via email with your contract/license document. Use that team number on all paperwork and the film itself.
  4. The contract and license must be returned to 168 no later than 5 days following entry. NO PAPERWORK - NO VERSE.
  5. Log into the site with your user name/password and click the "Manage Your Entry" button. This takes you to the Producer Dashboard. Become familiar with the specifics of production, particularly the Film Specifications, and TEST YOUR WORKFLOW before Verse Assignment.

Season Schedule

VERSE ASSIGNMENT (Foundational Verses Randomly Assigned)
Tuesday, May 12, 2015: 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Friday, May 22

TURN-IN DAY (Upload must begin BEFORE 11:00 AM PDT)
Friday, May 29. 

MEDIA DAY INTERVIEWS Friday, May 29, 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM PDT, Location TBA. Cast and Crews will be interviewed by 168. The media is invited.

13th Annual 168 Film Festival - Saturday and Sunday August 29-30, 2015. Regal Cinemas Premiere House at LA Live!, Los Angeles, CA. Location and Info - Virtual Tour

Summary of Rules on Content

168 Films do not require any overtly Christian characters. Authentic Christian characters are encouraged versus one-dimensional Christian caricatures. Heroes should come to be aligned with truth, goodness, God & the Bible. A respectful, traditional interpretation of scripture is obligatory. Heretical or blasphemous films and gratuitous elements are unacceptable. This means the following:

  • No swearing
  • No gratuitous sex, violence, language or drug use.
  • No overly revealing costumes
  • No using the word “God” or “Jesus” as an expletive or showing disrespect to Jesus, God or the Spirit of God
  • No morally ambiguous films (like purely black comedies) or films that wink at, poke fun at, or deride hell, sin or other core Christian doctrine. (Potentially divisive denominational differences should be avoided.)

As Jesus is our redemption, redemptive stories are ideal, even if it's just a hint of redemption. If tragedies are produced, they must show real consequences for bad behavior (sin). By poking fun at the seriousness of murder, etc., TV and movies have helped to destroy the pursuit of virtue and make light of the miseries of mankind. We want to start to reverse that trend.

We also encourage filmmakers to avoid doctrines that may be divisive in the wider Christian community, concentrating instead on the core of the Gospel message.


  • Originality: Submitted films must be comprised of only all original material, created specifically for the Project   
    • No pre-written scripts, except for Write of Passage Spotlight Films
    • Limited amount of stock footage
    • Films based on true or real life events require appropriate clearances including "life rights"

Turn-In Summary

  • Mandatory Content: items that must be included to be eligible for awards:   
    • Slate at the head of the film
    • Credits, typical of standard motion picture production
    • Post-roll Bible Verse Insertion, from content provided by 168     
  • Submittal Versions: All teams are required to turn in TWO (2) versions of their films:
    • (1) a compressed online JUDGING version - h.264 that begins uploading prior to the Turn-In deadline
    • (2) a Pro-Res, DNxHD or AVC SCREENING version on physical media, which will be delivered no to 168 no later than one week following Turn-In of the Judging version. Screening Version may have limited extra finishing work for Festival exhibition, but the online Judging version will be used to determine winners.
  • Turn-in is via upload only. A media event may be scheduled on Turn-In day
  • Optional 5-minute "Making Of" Documentaries must be uploaded no later than 1 week following the primary film's turn-in date.
  • Turn-in times are for the Pacific Time Zone in the USA. Teams outside of the PST time zone need to adjust their start/end times accordingly
  • Film duration: See below for film duration limits for specific film types

Rules, Duration and Start Times for Specific Film Types

For "Speed Films," start time and turn-in time is strictly regulated. "Non-Speed" film types may start immediately upon entry purchase/forms completion, but must be turned in at the same time as Speed Films.  Films will compete with other films of the same type. Note: All films in all parts of the world are due at the same time in the PACIFIC TIME ZONE.

"Speed Film" Types

"Signature" Speed Films (Dramas, Comedies, Musicals, etc.)

  • Duration must not exceed 11 minutes including credits (11:00:01 means no awards).
  • No Writing may occur prior to Verse Assignment (the beginning of the 10-day Pre-Production period).
  • Before Verse Assignment  teams may conduct casting, secure locations, gear and crew, and develop story concepts prior to verse assignment, but no scripting may be performed. (Testing of post production workflow before Verse Assignment is highly recommended.)
  • No filming may commence prior to the posted Production Week Start Time.
  • Production must be complete and upload started by the posted Turn-In Time. (See above for Turn-In rules for all films.)
  • (Musicals are dramas/comedies where song lyrics advance the plot.)


  • Music must be original, composed for the project.
  • No writing of lyrics, score or charts may occur until Verse Assignment.
  • No recording or Digital Audio production until the start of Production Week.
  • Composers will sign a certificate that states music was composed within these rules

Signature Speed Films with Hybrid Live Action/Animated/Effects:

  • These (up to 11 min - see above) films alternate synthetic elements and live action and are considered Speed Films.
  • As such, all CG effects, animation, etc. are considered a part of live action. These assets include Motion Capture, Plates and Virtual Sets. 
  • Effects MAY be planned after Verse Assignment, but filmmakers may NOT shoot or do work on any of these elements before the Start Production date and time.

Student Speed Films

  • Duration: 11 minutes or less
  • Student films follow the same timetable as Signature Films (in the Pacific Time Zone)
  • Key personnel (producer, director, etc.) must be active college or high school students, supervised by an adult advisor.
  • One adult advisor must register as Signing Producer if student producer is under age 18.
  • If the normal pre-production/production schedule interferes with exams at the school, dates of verse assignment and 168-hour production week may be rescheduled. Proof of exam-week conflict must be provided to be considered. Contact us to explain the circumstances.
  • Student films compete in their own category.

Non-Speed Film Types

All "Non-Speed" films may begin production as soon as fees are paid. On all films the producer will choose a Bible verse related to the theme for the year. This declared verse must be submitted to 168 via email no later than 10 days before Verse Assignment for Speed Films. (If registering less than 10 days prior to Verse Assignment, verse must be declared with registration.) Verses will be published using the NIV translation.


  • Duration is 11-minutes or less including credits
  • Content Rules and Turn-In Rules as described above apply to Documentary entries.
  • Production turn-in deadline is the same as for Signature Speed Films.
  • Stock Footage: Use of stock or generic footage in docs is not regulated, but releases are mandatory
  • Unlimited Documentaries compete in their own category.  They are eligible for the Evangelista Award.

KidVid (Non-Speed)

  • Duration: 5 minutes or less, including credits
  • Producer will specify age range of the target audience in the Film Details Database. Ages 3-15 year-olds - “G” or "PG” rated. The spirit of these film ratings is a return to the very conservative standards of 1950's media.
  • Age appropriateness will be a criterion for judging.
  • Duration may be no more than 5 minutes, appropriate for target audience attention span.
  • KidVids are subject to the same Content Rules as described above.
  • Production turn-in rules described above apply.
  • KidVids compete in their own separate category.

Pure Animation Films (Non-Speed)

  • Duration is 5-minutes or less including credits.
  • Pure Animation films must contain animation or motion capture in every frame.
  • Pure Animation films will compete in their own category, and are also eligible for the Evangelista Award.
  • Turn-in rules for all films (above) apply.

Music Videos (Non-Speed)

  • Duration: 5 minutes or less, including credits
  • Music Videos are a special category, where the visuals enhance or illustrate the lyric of the song.
  • Original music is encouraged. If copyrighted pre-existing music is chosen, all licenses and synchronizations rights must be secured and copies delivered to 168 with submission (see below).
  • Music Videos compete in their own category.
  • Turn-in rules are the same as all other films.

Write of Passage Spotlight Films (Non-Speed)  

  • Length is 11-minutes or less, including credits 
  • Turn-in rules are the same as for all films (see above).
  • Write of Passage scripts may be optioned and produced for the festival.
  • Producers may "bid" on the rights to produce any Write of Passage script. 168 Management has sole discretion in granting permission to produce.
  • Once accepted and fees paid, producers may begin production as soon as entry fees are paid. No time limits are required other than turn-in..
  • The foundational verse for the Write of Passage script will be the foundational verse for the film.
  • Technical requirements are the same as for all other submissions.  See Producer Dashboard for details.
  • Write of Passage Spotlight Films compete in their own category.
  • See the Write of Passage FAQ for full details.

"Making Of" Behind The Scenes Documentaries (Optional)

  • Behind-the-scenes (BTS) documentaries are encouraged but are not required.
  • No additional registration required.
  • Length is 5-minutes or less including credits.
  • Filming may start as soon as a team is formed.
  • All Content Rules (above) apply.
  • Deadline for submission is exactly 168 hours after the published hour on Turn-In day. A Screening Version of your Making Of documentary should be included in your Screening Version Physical Submission, which must be postmarked at the same time..
  • Upload and technical requirements are the same as for all other entries.
  • "Making Of" documentaries compete in their own category.

Rules about Rights and Permissions

Music Licensing

  • All music must be licensed
  • Original composers will use the form to assign rights to you and to 168.
  • "Production Music" (from library, buyout or online scoring service) may be used, but it will disqualify for Best Score or Best Original Song.
  • Production Music (if used) must be licensed for up to 3,000 copies plus Internet delivery.
  • Copyrighted "popular" music may ONLY be used if appropriate rights and permissions are obtained with license to make up to 3,000 copies plus Internet delivery. This applies also to incidental music that could be picked up by a microphone in a public place, or an actor humming a few bars or singing/speaking lyrics of a copyrighted song. For details on the hoops to use commercially-available music, please see www.bzrights.com/101.htm.


  • Producer must obtain releases from talent, cast, crew, location sites, trademarks, images or artwork displayed.
  • Template forms are provided in the Producer Dashboard. These forms are not to be construed as legal advice. Each team is responsible for its own contracts, releases and legal research.
  • If the film is based on true or real life events, Entrant is required to have those life rights and other releases executed by the participants as required by custom and usage in the industry and the applicable laws. Life rights owners must agree to the terms of the 168 license agreement.
  • Derivative works are not allowed. No books except he Bible are to be used as a basis for stories.
  • Releases are to be held by the producers in perpetuity. Producer guarantees that all appropriate rights have been secured.
  • Forms to be submitted to 168 with the film are listed in the Producer Dashboard.

Rules about Safety

Teams accept full responsibility for the safety of their cast and crew. This includes, but is not limited to, reading and complying with the Safety and Production Guidelines provided by 168. Producers must follow all applicable city, state, and federal laws. Team members are required to conduct daily safety meetings. Further, all teams will comply with all State and Federal OSHA requirements as well as local fire codes and filmmaking regulations. Children on the set are subject to special rules outlined in the Official Rules. 168 IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ACCIDENTS OR INJURIES, OR PROPERTY LOSS/DAMAGE ON YOUR SET.

Rules on Pre-Festival Screening

  • 168 reserves the right to premier your film at the festival.
  • NO open access to any versions of the film that may be uploaded to a video service (YouTube, Vimeo).
  • Films may not appear on any social media outlet (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) prior to the 168 Film Festival. (Be sure any preliminary uploads are "private" or "unlisted" and that recipients do not share the film.)
  • You may show your film to your team or supporters prior to the festival AS PRIVATE SCREENINGS ONLY.
  • If your film is NOT selected for festival screening, it may be made publically available, but only after the official screening schedule is announced.
  • Trailers are encouraged and may be uploaded to any social media or video sharing outlet referencing the premiere date of the festival. Trailers submitted to 168 will be featured on this site.