Travis Knight and Diego Cardoso!

Winning team of the 2015 Urbanism Filmmaking Challenge!

Watch the winning film here:

On Sunday October 4th, local urbanists gave presentations on their current projects. Topics ranged from comprehensive bike plans, to smaller local street calming plans, to underground rail lines, to art influenced by transportation planing. After the presentations, filmmakers were matched with the urbanists in a speed-dating like scenario in order to form teams to create a short 5 minute documentary on their subject.

The final films were scripted, shot, edited, and submitted in less than a week and had their premiere the very next Sunday night, closing night of the festival!  All five films were excellent. And you can watch them all on our youtube channel! 

Filmmakers and Urbanists unite to boost awareness about the burgeoning walkability bikability transit ability of Los Angeles.

Networking event is Sunday, October 4th at 7pm.

Screening and awards are Sunday, October 11th at 8pm.

Click here to register online.


Create a short documentary (2-5 minutes) in one week. First place winners will receive a $300 prize and gear from Betabrand. 


You will be paired with a local urbanist who is an expert on a key aspect of Los Angeles’ development. You will work with them to create a 2-5 minute documentary about their project.  Films must be uploaded by Saturday October 10th at 11pm.


You will present a 2-5 minute slide show about a project you are working on, recently completed, or an area of development in which you could provide expertise and insight.  You will present to an audience of filmmakers eager to tell the story of your project with more cinematic flare. By preparing the presentation, you will have already done most of the leg work of gathering historical images and documents, as well as renderings and concept art. 


The top ten films will be screened Sunday October 11th at 8pm and awards will be given out immediately following the screening.  All films that are made as part of this contest will be hosted on the New Urbanism Film Festival website and/or youtube channel.  The New Urbanism Film Festival will also retain rights to screen the films at future NUFF events.  The filmmakers are welcome to host and screen their films at other venues and festivals. NUFF does not hold exclusive rights.


We are happy to announce that this portion of the film festival will be judged by Craig Detweiler and Caroline Cicero.

Craig_DetweilerCraig Detweiler

Craig Detweiler, Ph.D., is Professor of Communication and director of the Center for Entertainment, Media and Culture at Pepperdine University.  He’s written comedies for the Disney Channel and directed documentaries featured on ABC.  Foreword honored iGods: How Technology Shapes Our Spiritual and Social Lives as the 2013 Silver winner for best books about Popular Culture.  His additional books include Into the Dark a study of the top ranked films on the Internet Movie Database and Halos and Avatars about the influence of gaming on the emerging generation. A longtime Angeleno, Craig has lived in Pasadena, Duarte, Chinatown, Culver City, and Malibu.

Caroline Cicero

Caroline headshotGrowing up in Chicago, architecture, neighborhoods, and demographic change intrigued Caroline Cicero from a young age.  In her 25 years as a gerontologist, urban planner, and social worker in Los Angeles, Caroline has worked to make communities and housing better for people across their lifespan.  Caroline teaches classes on aging, social policy, and design and environment at the University of Southern California, Davis School of Gerontology.  One of her favorite research interests is how older people and their housing issues are represented on film.

Lisa Hasko

Lisa Hasko

Lisa Hasko is the Filmmaker Services Manager at the International Documentary Association. She’s also the Artist Relations Manager for Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.




What are the other prizes?

2nd and 3rd place winners will receive prizes from event sponsors. We will update the site as these arrangements have been finalized.

Can we register as a team?

Yes. Your entire crew can be entered under one registration.

Do we have to provide our own equipment?

Yes. Filmmakers are expected to have access to necessary equipment.  Urbanists are expected to have access to materials, locations, and possibly other experts if needed.

How will Filmmakers and Urbanists be paired?

It is kind of a speed dating atmosphere, we admit that.  But that is the best way to ensure that the filmmakers have an interest in the project. And that the urbanists and filmmakers have similar schedules.

Can I make the movie longer?

We will only judge and screen up to five minutes as part of this contest.  However, we encourage filmmakers and urbanists to arrange for future collaborations, of course!  That’s kind of the whole point!

When is the deadline to register?

September 30th

If I miss the deadline to register am I screwed?

Email us before you give up hope!

What format must the video be in?

All films must be uploaded as a digital file. Please use h.264, thank you.  

Where do I get tickets to the Sunday October 11th event?

Those tickets will be sold through the main page of the New Urbanism Film Festival.  A link will be added once the full festival schedule is announced and tickets go on sale circa September 15.

What if I have more questions?

Tweet them to us! @NwUrbanFilmFest