Moviemaker Magazine, the leading film industry publication and website focused on the art and craft of making movies, recently named the Nevada City Film Festival (NCFF) “One of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals”, citing “Magic abounds in this California mountain town festival, nicknamed the Sundance of the Sierra.” Also included on the list are notable festivals like Sundance and SXSW, and other significant independent film festivals such as The Loft Film Festival in Tucson, AZ; Tallgrass Film Festival in Witchita, KS; Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham, AL; Cucalorus Film Festival in Wilmington, NC; Hell’s Half Mile in Bay City, MI; and Champs-Élysées Film Festival in Paris, France.

Nevada City Film Festival 2023

“If you are hoping to find a tiny arts town to escape to and enjoy celebrating cinema for its own sake – and you feel like the big events may have lost their magic – look no further than the Nevada City Film Festival,” said one of the magazine’s judges, filmmaker Geoff Marslett.

Every summer, NCFF makes art into a party, bringing an audience of movie lovers together with emerging and top independent filmmakers to showcase award-winning short and feature length films from around the world. This year’s festival kicked off June 23 through 25, screening 70 films and welcoming 40 filmmakers, plus 1000 attendees from around the world to events held at the Onyx Theatre, historic Nevada Theatre, and outdoors at Pioneer Park.

Nevada City Film Festival - Best of the Fest

Marslett also praised president Jeff Clark and executive director Jesse Locks for their hands-on, conscientious leadership of an incredible team: “They genuinely care about your work and have been very kind and supportive since the very first time I screened here.”

“We are extremely honored to be included on such an esteemed list with these formative independent film festivals, while also continuing to put our hometown and its arts scene on the global map,” said Locks. “None of it would be possible without the audiences that come out to see and support the films and the filmmakers. It’s always validating as an event producer when festival-goers are still willing to take a chance on seeing something that isn’t deemed “mainstream” or with a big-named Hollywood star.”

Nevada City Film Festival - Filmmakers in residence

With more than 23 film festivals, countless sold-out comedy shows, numerous outdoor and community film screenings including the popular family friendly Movies Under the Pines, local filmmaker grants and showcases, and one of the only restorative producers retreats in the US, NCFF continues to make good on its mission to serve Nevada County and nearby regions by providing art, entertainment, education and culture through the medium of film.

Earlier this year, NCFF was named #9 Film Festival by USA Today 10Best, and has also been named one of the top 50 Film Festivals Worth the Submission Fee.