Film Festival 101

Film Festival 101

Film Festival 101

Film Festival 101


How to fest

What you need to know to attend Waco's Premiere Independent Film Festival 

March 28-31, 2019


Light Sight, a foreign family film playing Saturday at 10 am

Light Sight, a foreign family film playing Saturday at 10 am

what is this? 

First, these are not artsy-fartsy films. Don't worry about "getting it".  We've selected films that we find meaningful.  Stories that most everyone can relate to.  So get ready to laugh, cry or even scream, because these movies are made to connect with audiences. 

We're bringing some of the best indie films to Central Texas.

You'll get to:

  • See movies you won't see anywhere else

  • Meet and talk with attending directors, actors, writers and filmmakers

  • Walk the red carpet at the historic Hippodrome

  • Learn more about the filmmaking industry and craft


Everyone!  Anyone who likes movies will find something to enjoy at the festival.

You'll find

  • Drama

  • Comedy

  • Horror

  • Family

  • Sci-Fi / Fantasy

  • Documentaries

  • Texas films

  • Foreign films

how do i attend the festival?

You can dip your toe in, and just watch one movie. Or you can dive in, buy a pass, see everything and attend every party. Our suggestion: Check out the schedule - we’re building it now, but it should be live by Feb 22. There's a description for each program. See what interests you. We're sure something that will entertain you. 

So Much Yellow, a family drama playing Saturday at 3:30 pm.

So Much Yellow, a family drama playing Saturday at 3:30 pm.

Albert E. Brumley, Songwriter of the Ozarks, a music documentary playing Thursday at 11:30 am

Albert E. Brumley, Songwriter of the Ozarks, a music documentary playing Thursday at 11:30 am

do i need tickets? 

Yes.  There are two ways to attend the festival:

  • VIP - ALL ACCESS Passes: These get you into every film, party, and educational session. It's the A-list way to attend the festival

  • Individual tickets: A single general admission ticket to a feature film or short film program. (You can also buy a pack of six tickets for the price of four. Check out the Ticket Six-Pack)

Where is this? 

It's all in downtown Waco at these cool venues...

What are these Short Film PRograms?

I Love You So Much It's Killing Them, a horror comedy playing Friday at 7:30 pm.

I Love You So Much It's Killing Them, a horror comedy playing Friday at 7:30 pm.

These terrific indie flicks are similar to your traditional movie going experience (check out the schedule for more details on each film). 

But the short film programs are where it gets really interesting. . .

  • Think of it as a movie mix-tape. We've brought together independent short films from around the world, designed a theme, and have hand-crafted a playlist for you. In many of these programs, you'll get a taste of different types of films: drama, comedy, documentary, etc.

  • Each block is about 90 minutes and will take you all around the world without leaving your seat. A new story begins about every 10 minutes, so you’ll experience slices of life from many different angles.

  • Feel free to applaud after every film in the program, but please stay for the entire block of films. At the end of the program the lights will come up, we'll have a Q&A with attending filmmakers, then everyone will exit as we reset for the next program of films.


Have a question for us?

 Send us and email: info@deepintheheartff.com or hit us up on Facebook.  






Screening venue

Waco Hippodrome

The Waco Hippodrome is a film lover's dream.  Equipped with a full service kitchen, bar and waitstaff, movie-goers can eat, drink and watch a show, all while sitting in the theater's recently renovated seats.  In addition, audiences can check out paintings, sculptures and works from local artists in the Hippodrome lobby. This century old gem may have started as a vaudeville theater, but it's evolved into a Waco cultural hot spot. 

724 Austin Avenue, Waco TX 76701


Parties, Panels and More

Cultivate 7Twelve

Cultivate 7Twelve is new to Waco and the film festival. More than an art gallery, its a hub of Waco culture as it’s expressed through art, good, food and drink. Just two doors down from the Hippodrome, its centralized and convenient to both filmmakers and movie-goers. It will be our destination for panels and parties.

712 Austin Avenue, Waco TX 76701


Waco Winery

Waco Winery is a true locally owned and run vineyard and tasting room. Sit under the stars on the rooftop patio (complete with a view of the Silos) or relax in the lounge overlooking Austin Avenue!  Both spaces are a great, relaxed place to unwind and enjoy fine Texas wines. Their vineyards are located just a few miles outside of Waco.

708 Austin Avenue, Waco TX 76701


Waco Escape Rooms

What is an escape room?  Waco Escape Rooms custom builds rooms around a story or theme and invites you to test your wits against the challenging clues, perplexing puzzles, and maddening mysteries embedded in the rooms. Be warned, you might get addicted to the thrill of the hunt!

711 Washington Avenue, Waco TX 76701







Thank you, Sponsors

Our sincerest appreciation to our wonderful sponsors! Their dedication to the arts and our community enables us to serve both filmmakers and film lovers!  Please support them as they support us. 

presenting sponsor


Platinum Sponsors

Gold Sponsors


Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors

Become a Sponsor

The arts are vital to the culture of our central Texas community.  The Deep in the Heart Film Festival welcomes working with any organization that shares interest in growing the arts and local filmmaking.  Contact info@deepintheheartff.com for more information on becoming a sponsor.

Donate to the Festival

The Deep in the Heart Film Festival is the capstone event of the Heart of Texas Film Society.  We seek to promote independent film throughout Central Texas.  We are an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

To make a donation, please contact us at info@deepintheheartff.com






Love making movies?  Love watching movies?  Love helping your cultural community?

Get Involved

Here's what volunteer positions we're looking for right now:

  • Social Media Ambassador

    • Work with the Deep in the Heart social media coordinator

    • Promote festival events and screenings

    • Publicize "day-of" and "on-site" activities

    • Must apply for this position. Email us: volunteer@deepintheheartff.com

  • Registration Table

    • Greet our guests

    • Tabulate ballots

    • Distribute filmmaker and VIP passes & swag bags.

  • Ushers

    • Take tickets

    • Check Filmmaker & VIP badges,

    • Distribute and collect voting ballots.

  • Set-up and take down

    • Help move tables and or chairs

    • Set up Red Carpet area

    • Party Clean-up

Sign Up

We're using SignUp.com (the leading online SignUp and reminder tool) to organize our upcoming SignUps.

Click the button to go to our sign up page

Click the button to go to our sign up page

Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:

1) Click this link to see our SignUp on SignUp.com: http://signup.com/go/YfvrqaN
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact me and I can sign you up manually.

What film festival volunteers get

Volunteering with the film festival is a great way to help out, build your resume, and meet other artists and filmmakers. Plus:

  • Volunteers who work 1 shift (either at the Registration table or as an Usher) will receive a t-shirt.

  • Volunteers who work 2 shifts (either at the Registration table or as an Usher) will receive a t-shirt and 4 individual tickets.

  • Volunteers who work 3 shifts (either at the Registration table or as an Usher) will receive a t-shirt and 1 VIP-All Access Pass, which includes all films, classes, and the after-parties.

Questions? Contact us: volunteer@deepintheheartff.com







Waco movie buffs accustomed to driving to Dallas, Austin, Houston or San Antonio for a serious cinema fix will get a film festival they can call their own next February when the Deep in the Heart Film Festival makes its debut at the Waco Hippodrome.
— Carl Hoover


Press Releases

  • February 13, 2016 | Mayor, City to Be Recognized by Texas Film Commission at Deep in the Heart Film Festival Press Release

  • December 13, 2016 | Deep in the Heart Film Festival Announces Opening Feature, Panel Lineup Press Release

  • July 1, 2016 | Official "Open for Entries" Press Release

Media Contact

Send press inquiries to Samuel Thomas info[at]deepintheheartff.com.






What is this? How do I go to a film festival?

Film festivals are a great cultural event that's not only entertaining, but artistic.   Let us tell you more in Festival 101.

Why does Waco need a film festival?  Why should I go?

There's long been an interest in filmmaking and great films in central Texas. We want to show Waco the great stories out there and the wide and fantastic world of filmmaking.

Waco is also a seedbed of artistic talent and a home for working artists, including media professionals and filmmakers. Many of today's industry leaders came from the Waco area and Baylor's Film and Digital Media Program. 


"Logic will get you from A to B.  Imagination will take you everywhere." - Albert Einstein

What kind of films do you show?

We love and accept all film genres: comedy, drama, horror, thriller, documentary, animation. We want a story that grabs hold of us and won’t let go.

This year we will accept feature, short and student film submissions. Our audiences will see great independent feature and short films from Texas and around the world. Look our for the schedule in February 2019. 

How do I submit?

Submission info is here.  This includes our rules as well as links to our FilmFreeway and Withoutabox portals. 

Where are you located?

The Deep in the Heart Film Festival is proudly located in Waco, Texas.  Our films screen at the Waco Hippodrome: 724 Austin Ave, Waco TX 76701.

Do you have any hotel discounts?

There are several great hotels in the downtown Waco and surrounding areas. If you are traveling from out of town, please email us and we may be able to provide you a discounted rate at our festival hotel. 

How can I purchase tickets?

You can buy tickets and check out the schedule in February of 2019.

Can I volunteer?

YES! This is an event in our community and for our community. We would love to have your talents and time. Read more about the type of things we might be looking for and how to sign up in our volunteer section. Bonus: get free stuff!

Can I get a press pass?

We welcome writers, journalists, and new media! We have press passes available to qualified media. Email us at media[at]deepintheheartff[dot]com for more information.

I have a question that I don't see listed here.

We thought you might come up with some good questions. Read the full festival rules here, and if you don't see the answer there, reach out...

How can I contact you?

Send us an email! info@deepintheheartff.com.