The festival accepts all genres: narrative, documentary, experimental, music video, animation, student, features, and shorts. River Bend makes it a priority to highlight the work of local and regional filmmakers, and many of the films come from across the country and around the world.
Interested in submitting a film? Learn more here.
For the first seven years, the festival was located on the campus of Indiana University-South Bend, and was originally named the IU-South Bend Independent Video & Filmmakers Festival. For its first year, the festival was a one-day event, but grew into two days in the second year.
Previous Special Guests
Rachel Shenton – Actor (The Silent Child)
Chris Overton – Director (The Silent Child)
Shubhashish Bhutiani– Writer, Director (Hotel Salvation)
Zachary Spicer –Actor (The Good Catholic)
Beth Grant – Actor (Donnie Darko, Rain Man, Little Miss Sunshine, The Mindy Project)
Leila Djansi – Producer/Director (Like Cotton Twines)
Whitney Valcin – Casting Director/Producer (Like Cotton Twines)
Wes Jones – Screenwriter (Billions, The Brink)
Jim Strouse – Writer/Director (People Places Things, The Winning Season)
John Hancock (Prancer, The Looking Glass)
Kiran Shah – Actor (Lord of the Rings, Star Wars)
Stephen Susco – Screenwriter (The Grudge 1&2, Red)
Clint Howard – Actor (Apollo 13, The Grinch)
Larry Karaszewski – Screenwriter (People v. O.J. Simpson, Big Eyes)
Kate Chaplin – Producer (
Jordon Hodges – Actor/Writer (Sand Castles, Mary’s Buttons)
Lloyd Kaufman – Director (The Toxic Avenger, Poultrygeist)
John Baldecchi – Producer (Simon Birch, Odd Thomas)
Kathleen Haase – Producer (Detroit Rock City)
John Helmuth – Actor/Producer (The Flying Dutchman)
Jack Olesker – Producer (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Dustin Mills – Writer/Director (Skinless, Her Name Was Torment)
2019 River Bend Film Festival Sponsors
Allen Brenneman • Celtx • Common Spirits • Flowers By Phoebe • Goshen Motors • Greensweep Cleaning Services • Lesson.ly • The Local • Salon J • Vinyl Wagon Crew • Weston Fribley • Woodstar Photography • Yoder Culp Funeral Home
This project is made possible by the support of the Indiana Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
And a special thanks to our 2019 Festival hosts