Is it too early to pine for the cool, crisp comforts of autumn? Probably, but when it comes to the Milwaukee Film Festival, all bets are off. Today, Milwaukee Film announced that it is accepting entries for its 9th annual fest, set for September 28 – October 12. Films and videos of all lengths and genres will be accepted until Monday, June 12. There is no submission fee (it’s free!), and, for the third year in a row, Milwaukee Film will pay for all of the work that is screened in the festival. Neat!

“It’s been four months since our festival ended, and we’re ready to start watching films and conceptualizing the content for our 2017 edition,” said Milwaukee Film’s Artistic and Executive Director Jonathan Jackson in a press release. “In addition, we are proud to continue our commitment to paying artists.”

Speaking of paying artists, more than $34,000 in prizes awaits a handful of winners. Here’s how the awards break down:

Herzfeld Competition Award ($10,000)
Cream City Cinema Jury Award ($5,000)
Milwaukee Music Video Award ($5,000)
Black Lens Jury Award ($5,000)
Documentary Jury Award ($5,000)
Cream City Cinema College Filmmaker Award ($2,500)
Shorter Is Better Award ($1,000)
Kids Choice Short Film Award ($1,000)

There will also be two non-juried audience awards, presented by Allan H. (Bud) and Suzanne L. Selig. More awards may be announced, too.

“It’s a great festival,” adds director Steven Caple Jr., whose film The Land was featured at the 2016 fest. “For directors, it’s what you want out of screenings. This place has a setting that sparks your love for filmmaking. Everyone is enthusiastic and supportive. Milwaukee’s festival is very intimate and the one-on-one networking goes a long way.”

An entry form with complete eligibility information can be found here. Specific questions about submissions can be directed too entry@mkefilm.org. Get to it, Milwaukee.

Milwaukee Film Festival Sponsor Trailer 2016 from Purple Onion Inc. on Vimeo.