Funded! This project was successfully funded on January 30, 2012.

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Our mission is to provide young artists with agency for their voices. Taking part in WYFF empowers us to empower other young people.

What is WYFF?

          The Westport Youth Film Festival is an empowering and inspiring outlet for young artists. What makes us unique is that we not only showcase the art of local, national and international teenagers in a professional setting, but that local youth have a hand in every aspect of the production of the festival.

          Because town lines tend to divide us into more homogeneous groups, we often forget about the incredible socio-economic, ethnic, cultural and philosophical diversity that exists in Connecticut.  WYFF brings together students from Norwalk, Westport, Bridgeport, Wilton, Stamford, Fairfield, New Haven and Weston to create a dynamic, professional level film festival.

WYFF’s Goals

          Our mission is to provide young artists with agency for their voices and in doing so to foster the next generation of great filmmakers.  We aim to bring teens from different places and experiences together to take part in the creation of a professional level film festival.  WYFF empowers young people to expand our concept of what we are capable of doing.

          Our goal is the production of our film festival. The 2012 Westport Youth Film Festival will be held June 2nd at The Bijou Theatre in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Our festival centers around screening the art of teen filmmakers. Submissions come from local, national and international youth artists.   

The Westport Arts Center is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation and your donation is fully deductible as provided by law.

For more information:

WYFF Website

WYFF YouTube Channel

Westport Arts Center

WYFF Alumni Testimonials

"After participating in WYFF I feel confident with my leadership and organization skills.  Putting on the festival is a group effort and through that experience I have learned to work better in groups.  These skills have been vital in my professional life because films are made by an ensemble not just a director."

-Ann Lupo, WYFF '08-'09, Audience Choice Award (Supermassive Black Hole), Currently a student at Tisch, NYU.

"To be recognized and appreciated is a great feeling.  For me, winning the audience choice award helped my already large ego swell enough so that I'd keep working and making movies.  That kind of positive confirmation was very helpful in giving me the motivation and endurance that's helped me in my screenwriting career."

-Jake Emanuel, WYFF '04, Audience Choice Award (Story of David), Currently a Screenwriter at Paramount Studios.

"WYFF taught me everything from what a good film is (and just how good high school films are) to how to raise money, manage a team, and be professional.  These skills have enabled me to do much of what I have done since.  Particularly with 18 in '08.  WYFF taught me these skills, the kinds of things you never learn in high school or college, things you can only learn by doing something big and audacious.  Once you do that, you can do anything.  It only comes with something like WYFF which has real stakes, we have to put on an amazing film festival every year that people all over the world are excited for, that's a lot of pressure, and if you can pull it off--and we did-- you can do anything."

-David D. Burstein, WYFF Director & Founder, NYU, Founder of 18 in '08, Currently writing a book on Millenial Generation

"My experiences with (WYFF) have given me the confidence to shape ideas into reality and collaborate with my peers and other artists.  WYFF was my first foray into the mechanics of an arts organization...what better introduction is there than to build your own!"

Emma Wiseman, WYFF Founder & Director, Currently an Actor and Director.

"WYFF was a great introduction into film festivals for aspiring filmmakers.  It was very inspiring and helpful to screen a film in a theatre for such a large audience."

-Max Pachman, WYFF '03-'04, Currently a Director.

"WYFF made me the person I am!"

-Chris Casey, WYFF Founder & Director, Currently a producer, director, & president of SilentDog Films.

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    5 backers

    You will receive a signed thank you letter from a member of our Youth Board of Directors!

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    4 backers

    You will receive a WYFF Sticker!

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    1 backer

    You will receive a WYFF Poster!

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    11 backers

    Your name will be listed in our festival guide as a "Festival Supporter" and you will receive the official WYFF 2012 T-shirt!

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    4 backers

    Your name will be listed in our festival guide as a "Friend of the Festival." You will receive a WYFF 2012 Winners DVD!

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    3 backers

    Your name will be listed in our Festival guide as a member of the "Cinematographer's Crew." You will receive two festival passes.

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    Your name will be listed in our Festival guide under the title "Final Cut Circle." You will receive a reserved table at the Festival and three Festival passes.

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    1 backer

    You will receive three Festival passes and a reserved table at the festival. Your name will be listed on screen at the festival and in our Festival guide under the title "Director's Chair." You will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a youth board member.

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    You will receive three Festival passes and a reserved table at the festival. Your name will be listed on screen at the festival and in our Festival guide as an "Assistant Producer." You will be recognized in Westport Arts Center materials as an "Event Sponsor" and you will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a youth board member.

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    You will receive three festival passes and a reserved table at the festival with a special gift basket. Your name will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide as a "Producer." You will be recognized in all Westport Arts Center materials as a "Program Sponsor" and you will be personally thanked on stage at the festival.

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    You will receive four Festival passes and a table in the VIP Box for the Festival with deluxe VIP catering. Your Name will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide as an "Executive Producer." You will be thanked on stage as by a WYFF youth board member. Additionally, you will be recognized in all Westport Arts Center Materials as a "Lead Sponsor."

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Funding period

- (60 days)