Guerilla Film Project

Started in 2005, Pickford Film Center’s Guerilla Film Project (GFP) is a 65-hour filmmaking competition for high school students that attracts budding young filmmakers from around Washington State. In February, over Presidents day weekend, GFP hosts teams of 1-5 students in downtown Bellingham. Each year, high school students from across the Northwest gather and race against the clock to write, shoot, cut and edit a three minute film in under 65 hours. All film entries are required to use a specific line of dialogue, select props, and a particular type of film shot. Films are then viewed by a jury of film professionals.  Prizes are awarded at a filmmaker screening to be held on Sunday, February 19th.


65-hour Film Festival for high schoolers
Starts February 16th, 2023
Teams of 1-5 members
$40 Registration Fee


Guerilla Film Project, Pickford Film Center
1318 Bay Street, Bellingham, WA 98225
Guerilla Film Project on Facebook




Step 2: PAY YOUR $40 REGISTRATION FEE  – Don’t forget to add your team and school name to the comments!




1/11  – Registration opens
➢ Register for the festival on Pickford’s website – there is no limit to how many teams a school may register

2/15 – Registration Closes
➢ Teams are announced, along with judges and panelists

2/16 – Workshop & Kickoff
➢ 4:30 PM at the Pickford teams are suggested to attend the Guerilla Filmmaker’s workshop & kickoff. Meet the competition & enjoy a workshop & panel discussion lead by former Guerilla Film Project winners.
➢ 6:00 PM – Required prompts are announced at the Pickford & online – the festival commences!

2/19 – Films due & festival Premiere
➢ 10:00 AM – Judges in session.
➢ 12:30 PM – Festival Premiere! Sit back, relax, and watch your film and all the others on the big screen. At the end of the screening cast your ballot for peer choice awards.
➢ 1:30 Awards Ceremony – Judges & Peer choice awards are announced, cash prizes and trophies are distributed then and there!



Five judges will be present at the screening, and will vote for three different categories. After the screening of the films, the judge’s choices will be announced. The following awards are:

Best Picture (Gold Hamster): $100

Best Use of Prompts (Gold Hamster): $50

Best Editing (Gold Hamster): $50


Each team member involved in the competition will vote after each film is viewed.

Peers vote for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place based on script, sound, camera work, and overall impact. The awards are as follows:

First Place (Gold Hamster): $100

Second Place (Silver Hamster): $50

Third Place (Bronze Hamster): $25

Free movie passes handed to everyone for participating!

Guerilla Film Project Rules

1. Guerilla filmmakers must be between ages 15 -18 or registered as high school students.

2. Teams must have 3 – 5 members. Teachers, parents, actors, are not considered part of the team.

3. Competition is limited to the first 25 teams to register.

4. Team members are responsible for the creative aspects of the filmmaking process. Teachers and parents are allowed to provide technical support only.

5. Film projects MUST be completed within the designated time NO LATE SUBMISSIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED.

6. Completed projects must be no more than three minutes long.

7. Projects must be submitted in mp4 (H.264 codec) format with 1080p resolution. The projects can be submitted as a removable hard drive or via a specified dropbox link.

8. All films must start with a 15 second black screen title plate which includes the film name, high school and team name. This will not count in your total film time.

9. Teams must edit their own projects and are responsible for providing their own editing equipment.

10. Use of copyrighted music is only allowed if a team includes written proof of permission from the music’s creator which needs to be handed in with the submission form.

11. All film content must remain within a PG rating. See the MPAA website for guidelines.

12. Filmmakers are required to sign a release form granting Pickford Film Center the right to use footage created during the Guerilla Film Project for promotional materials. Any revenue received from the use of these materials will be used by Pickford Film Center to fund future
community projects.

13. No one associated with the Guerilla Film Project or the Pickford Film Center can assist teams with their projects in any way.

Congratulations to the winner of the 2022 Guerilla Film Project:

Team name: Team Grace
School: Anacortes