2019 Notre Dame Student Film Festival

30th Annual ND Student Film Festival image (small)

The Notre Dame Student Film Festival screens films made by ND undergraduates during the past year as class projects. These students study the art of filmmaking in advanced, intermediate, and introductory film production courses taught in the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre.  All films are shot on location and often feature the acting talents of Notre Dame students and faculty. Audience members are invited to vote for their favorite film via text message, and the Audience Choice Award is presented after the final screening. The 2019 Audience Choice Award went to Zach Lawson for Shelter Me.

We're celebrating our 30th Anniversary this year!

Over the years the NDSFF has been a launching pad for student filmmakers as they begin their careers in the film, television, and entertainment industry. The festival has featured the first films of future award winners such as Peter Richardson (2011 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Award winner, How To Die in Oregon) and John Hibey (2012 Sundance Film Jury Award Winner for Short Filmmaking, Fishing Without Nets), as well as numerous others. Writers, producers, editors, executives, many NDSFF alumni are now career professionals at Netflix, Lionsgate, Dreamworks, Industrial Light & Magic, Disney, NBC Universal and numerous other companies.

Many student films from past festivals have also been selected for national and international film festivals, including:

Breaking the Cycle- 2018 New York City Short Film Festival (Best Documentary Short), 2018 USA Film Festival (First Place Non-Fiction short film), 2018 Ivy Film Festival (Best U.S. Undergraduate Documentary)
Respectfully, Tony - 2017 Nevada City Film Festival

Debajo de los árboles (Beneath the Trees)- 2018 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
Peace at the Pipeline - 2017 San Pedro International Film Festival, 2017 Riverside International Film Festival
patrolling sandy hook - 2016 USA Film Festival (Winner, Special Jury Award), 2016 DocuWest International Film Festival (Winner, Women Who Doc Award)
Spark of Madness - 2016 Naperville Independent Film Festival (Best Student Film Nominee)
Eat. Ride. Sleep. - 2015 DocuWest International Film Festival, 2015 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Nominee
Curry & Erin - 2015 Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (Special Jury Prize, Collegiate Documentary)
The Suicide Disease - 2014 Sunset International Film Festival (Winner, Best Short Documentary)
The Last Free Place - 2014 Anchorage International Film Festival
Project Hopeful - 2012 Re:Image Film Festival (Winner, Best Picture, Collegiate Category)
King of the Park - 2012 CineYouth Film Fest (Winner, Best Comedy, Senior Division)
The Elect - 2011 Los Angeles Film Festival, 2012 Dallas International Film Festival
Picking Up America - 2011 Ivy Film Festival (Winner, Social Change Award)

The 30th Annual Notre Dame Student Film Festival

January 25-27, 2019
Browning Cinema, DeBartolo Performing Arts Center

Friday, January 25th at 7:00pm
Saturday, January 26th at 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm.
Sunday, January 27th at 3:00pm and 7:00 pm*
*Audience Choice Award presented after the 7:00 screening on Sunday, January 27th

Go to performingarts.nd.edu or Call 574-631-2800

Running Time: Approximately 120 min.
Some films contain mature content.

Featured Films


Saskia Hennecke, Grace Tourville

Making the transition to college might be a challenge, but transitioning in college is definitely daunting. (11:30)

2019 NYC Short Documentary Film Festival- Best Director Award
2019 Oregon Documentary Film Festival- Best Picture Nominee
2019 Equinox Women’s Film Festival
2019 Toronto Documentary Short Film Festival
2019 Ivy Film Festival
2019 Harvard College Film Festival
2019 Georgia Documentary Film Festival
2019 Global Impact Film Festival
2019 Out Here Now Kansas City LGBT Film Festival



Beatty Smith, Grace Tourville

Stranded on a country road? Welcome to the farmhouse over yonder. (9:53)



John McDonough, David Troyer

A hypnotic journey into a memory lost . (9:50)


Shelter Me

Zach Lawson

The only hope for a million stray cats and dogs in Texas may be one woman…and her camera. (19:37)

WINNER: 2019 ND Student Film Festival Audience Choice Award
: 2019 Gold Remi Award WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival
WINNER2019 Arizona International Film Festival Best Short Documentary
WINNER2019 USA Film Festival International Short Film Competition- Jury Award
WINNER: 2019 Atlanta ShortsFest Film Festival- Best Documentary Short
2019 Spotlight Film Awards
- Best Short Documentary of the Year Nominee (Atlanta)


Thou Shall Not Steal

Naj Harrabi, Hap Burke

Some home security systems are better than others. (7:34)



Gretchen Hopkirk, Kelli Smith

It’s a tall task on election day at the Office of Voter Registration. (9:37)



Zach Huffer, Joey Warner

A scientist searches for the solution to save her town frozen in time. (7:00)


Mama Yen

Jiale Hu

Thousands of miles from home, international students find a surrogate mother in a dining hall worker from Vietnam. (11:15)

2019 Boston Asian American Film Festival
2019 Yonkers Film Festival



Alex Mansour, Kenny Xu

A symphony of brush strokes tells the tale of a boy lost in the canvas. (8:35)


Off Track, On Track

Jarissa Sabal, Brian Raab

A retired thoroughbred horse in the Bluegrass state still has a life to live. (9:50)  



Jarissa Sabal, Brian Raab

An Uber-screwball comedy. (7:17)