From day one, HDFEST® was dedicated to screening exclusively in high-definition, shorts and features which originated in high-definition.

We Were There at the Beginning

High-definition, HD, high-def, the terms are everywhere today. Back in 2000 when HDFEST® was founded, the world of high-definition was wildly different.

Screenings in high-definition were a rarity and virtually non-existent in theaters. Early adopter HD indie filmmakers discovered that HD screenings of their projects, for all practical purposes, didn’t exist. The shooting options for indie filmmakers looking to work in high-definition were limited, inexpensive HD camcorders were years away, and HD cameras on cell phones seemed the stuff of dreams.

Making First Impressions Around the World

Many people hadn’t heard of HD “back in the day,” and for most people, HDFEST® marked the very first time they had seen high-definition on a big screen in a theater setting. Early in our history, HDFEST® traveled the world introducing audiences to what was often their first experience with high-definition. Overwhelmingly, general audience, indie filmmakers and industry professionals alike were stunned by this “new kind of digital video” and we were proud and excited to be part of it all.

HDFEST® and Digital Indie Filmmaking

We always felt that high-definition was a true game changer. Since 2000, we’ve seen our initial assessment of the potential of high-definition unfold. Today, high-definition technology is allowing independent filmmakers to do more with less than ever before. We’ve loved watching it all unfold and are eager to continue to play a key role in the continued evolution of digital indie filmmaking.

Evolving Alongside High-Definition Since 2000

Over the years, HDFEST® continued to evolve alongside high-definition. As a result, the festival was responsible for many noted film festival first. Adopting new high-definition technologies and showcasing them to the public, indie filmmakers and entertainment and technology professionals has always been at the core of HDFEST’s mission.

Past HDFEST® Cities

Los Angeles
New York
Helsinki, Finland
Hameenlina, Finland
(More on the way)

Past HDFEST® Venues

Part of our goal in showcasing movies was to focus on all aspects of presentation, ranging from projection and audio quality to our selection of venues. Since our inception, HDFEST® has been able to use some of the world’s finest screening facilities. These facilities were routinely early adopters and incorporated cutting-edge technology.

Here are just a few of the facilities where HDFEST® events have taken place since 2000:

The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences-Leonard H. Goldenson Theatre-Los Angeles
Dolby Laboratories’ Larry Umlang Presentation Theatre II in Los Angeles
Fox Studios Australia
Sony Wonder Technology Lab in NYC
Tribeca Grand Screen Theater in NYC
and many, many more…

HDFEST®-Trailblazing (Yes, Trailblazing) Events & Technology Demonstrations

Considered an industry trailblazer for its forward-thinking promotion of HD, few events, if any events, have done more to promote high-definition to the independent film community than HDFEST®. HDFEST® has been responsible for numerous historic digital cinema landmark events and technological firsts, check out our festival milestones page.

HDFEST®Technological Milestones

First High-Definition Film Festival
First DivX HD Film Festival
First 2K Film Festival

The HDFEST® Deffie-The Award for Recognizing Excellence in High-Definition

Back in 2004, HDFEST instituted the annual HDFEST® Deffie Awards, offering recognition of excellence in High-Def filmmaking and innovation. The Deffie award continues to recognize the very best achievements in high-definition.

The Future of HDFEST®

The future of HDFEST® is the future of digital entertainment, pure and simple. HDFEST® will do what it has done since it’s inception in 1999, and its first festival in 2000, evolve alongside digital entertainment. In the future, you can depend upon HDFEST® to continue to seek out the very best in high-definition independent cinema and incorporate new and exciting technologies into all that we do.

A Wide Array of Diverse of Industry and Filmmaker Support

HDFEST® has enjoyed great support from the filmmaking, technology and entertainment communities. Often this support has been unstated and unpublicized. Some of the world’s largest corporations have backed HDFEST® in a variety of important ways as our HDFEST® World Tours have spanned the globe promoting high-definition long before it’s ubiquitous adoption.

For all of those who have supported HDFEST® both publicly and privately over the years we offer a heartfelt thank you. We look forward to continuing to bring cutting-edge technology and entertainment to audiences in the future.