FilmOneFest crowd. Credit: Jeff Smith
FilmOneFest crowd. Credit: Jeff Smith
FilmOneFest crowd.  Credit: Jeff Smith

Film festival to feature submissions by aspiring filmmakers from over 104 countries.

ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, N.J. ⎼ A sizable number of submissions, and the addition of the two new Female Filmmaker and Urban categories are a few of the exciting new features of FilmOneFest 2021 to be held on Saturday, July 17. The festival takes place in the Atlantic Highlands Harbor from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM. Admission and parking are free, and guests are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs to watch the main screening which begins at 9:00 PM under the stars!

Now in its thirteenth year, FilmOneFest has become the go-to event for super short-format filmmakers, both amateur and professional, from around the globe. Filmmakers from 104 countries submitted 2,297 super-short films this year. “Audiences are always amazed at how filmmakers rise to the challenge of telling a complete story in less than two minutes,” Corinna Thuss, Director said.

Also new this year is PJ Bracco as Submissions Director, leading a team of professionals to select the films for the festival.  “What a fantastic and fascinating run up  this year’s FilmOneFest.  I’ve been involved with the festival for the past several years, but watching the submissions roll in from the beginning has been amazing.  Given the obstacles and overwhelming conditions we’ve all been facing for the past year or so, it has been so uplifting to see that so many truly amazing films were made and submitted.  Independent filmmaking did not take a back seat.  I’m very excited about FilmOneFest 2021!”

Festival goers will enjoy the performance of Rock Bottom,  a musical act from LakeHouse Music Academy, beginning at 7:00 PM.

Food trucks will return this year including  Station One, Hot Dogs on First and Mr. Softee Ice Cream.

This year’s judges’ panel includes perennial favorites film editor Susan Littenberg (13 Going on 30, Charlotte’s Web, Bathtubs Over Broadway),  film reviewer/historian Victor Zak (Arts & Liesure, APP) and television network executive and producer Jon Crowley (HGTV, Impractical Jokers, Marriage Boot Camp), Newcomers include Adam Cushman, owner of Film 14, Demethress Davis, a writer of screenplays and fiction, and Camryn Monteforte, co-owner of Meemoms and podcaster.

The Alice Kupper Launch Party, Friday, July 16

The annual Launch Party for FilmOneFest is by invitation only. The party takes place on the eve of the festival at the Atlantic Highlands Arts Gallery, 54 1st Ave, starting at 7:00 PM. The invitees will enjoy refreshments, meet filmmakers and FOF Sponsors, and congratulate this year’s Community Service Award winner, Alice Kupper, PE long time supporter of the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council and FilmOneFest .

Event Day, Saturday, July 17

FilmOneFest formally begins at 7:00 PM at the marina, with music and food at 9:00 PM, the screening of more than 50 of the best short films of 2021 begins. Judges’ top picks will be announced, including the Gartenberg Memorial Award for Excellence in Filmmaking. Other awards include Best Comedy, Best Drama, Best Animation, Best Sci Fi, Best Experimental, Best Student, Best NJ Filmmaker, Best Documentary, and Director’s Choice.  New categories include Female Filmmaker and Urban Filmmaker. The perennial favorite Audience Choice Award will be back, selected in real time by the audience and will be given a $100 prize as well.

Walk-in admission is free for the main screen/lawn; no pre-registration is required. Lawn chairs and blankets are permitted on the great lawn. The event is ADA Listening devices available. This year there will be no premium or VIP seating though we hope to bring it back next year.

Rain date is Sunday, July 18; if it rains on July 18th, a new date will be selected in the fall. Up-to-minute updates will be posted on the website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram in the event of bad weather.

Volunteer and Sponsor Supported

FilmOneFest is 100% volunteer-produced, and proceeds support the Atlantic Highlands Food Pantry, and will collect donations at the event.

FilmOneFest thanks its premium sponsors PepsiCo and Alice Kupper, PE. and our other sponsors which include Satellite Self Storage & Truck Rental, Atlantic Highlands Historical Society, Cheryl and Ray Peterson of Coldwell Banker, Olga Mackin of Berkshire Hathaway – Fox & Roach Realty, Mary Lynn Hughes of Resources Real Estate, ReUnion RX Pharmacy, Atlantic Highlands for Equity and Justice, Atlantic Highlands Municipal Harbor, Seastreak, Lakehouse Music Academy, Red Hook Films, Film 14, Meemoms, Marquee Consulting Alliance, and the Monmouth County Arts Council. FilmOneFest is also grateful for the continued support of Tom Bernard and Sony Pictures Classics.

Individuals can make donations to this free event by visiting, scrolling down on the home page and clicking on the “Donate Now” button!

FilmOneFest is a project of the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council, a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to strengthen community through the arts. For more information about their gallery openings, free art classes etc, go to

This program is made possible in part by Monmouth Arts through funding from the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders and The New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

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