BEYOND: The Cary Film Festival

Submissions Open For 2020

The Town of Cary becomes a haven for film buffs June 11-14, 2020 as The Cary Theater welcomes year three of BEYOND: The Cary Film Festival. We’re featuring curated feature films and independently produced short films and screenplays. The festival also includes filmmaking and screenwriting workshops for all ages. Enter your short film or screenplay by March 13.


2019 Festival Highlights

Feature Films, Short Films & Filmmaking Workshops

Highlights included a screening of Batman Forever with the film’s writers Janet Scott Batchler and Lee Batchler. More than 250 people came to our family friendly festival kickoff screening of Captain Marvel outdoors at Cary’s Downtown Park emceed by Steve Daniels of ABC-11.


The festival also included a screening of Cancer Rebellion with filmmaker Hernan Baragan and Teen Cancer America.

Five blocks of indie short films accompany four workshops, including a screenwriting masterclass with Hollywood blockbuster screenwriter Janet Scott Batchler and Emmy Award-winning writer-producer Joy Goodwin. Other workshops include: Creating your own zombie film; The process of getting your film made; and What to do once your film is finished. BEYOND workshops are designed for all experience levels.

Why Beyond?

Beyond-Film-Festival_Cary-TheaterThe roots of our theater slogan “Beyond Ordinary” originate from the Town’s moniker from the late 1700s as Bradford’s Ordinary. It represents our mission of providing a unique setting to experience affordable art house cinema here in downtown Cary.

We go beyond the norm to celebrate the art of storytelling through cinema with a fun and affordable film festival designed for everyone to enjoy. All activities are conveniently located within walking distance of our historic theater downtown.

Last year, we attracted filmmakers from British Columbia and beyond. Our festival schedule even included a cartoons ‘n cereal block screening for youth, screenings that paid tribute to veteran heroes for our golden adult community, plus screenings of local filmmakers’ final cuts from our Rough Cuts Review program. We pride ourselves in making this film festival among the nation’s most inclusive to all ages.

What to Expect at the Film Festival

Enjoy a fun and welcoming small-town North Carolina film festival that’s fast becoming known for our hospitality and unique downtown location. Filmmakers from far and wide have come to screen their short films and dazzled our enthusiastic audience of cinephiles. With four workshops and talkbacks after every block of films, BEYOND offers a stimulating sneak-peek into the minds of filmmakers. Join us for social events and other fun activities all weekend long!

BEYOND: The Cary Film Festival Sponsors in 2019

Vegas ProCaryMag_2018draft



NC Film office 


For Filmmakers & Screenwriters

Competition short films and screenplays were submitted through our FilmFreeway partnership. Each submission must be completed after January 1, 2017 and not exceed 30 minutes in length, including credits, or screenplays surpassing 40 pages in length. All non-English language films are required to have English subtitles. Both films and screenplays are not limited to any genre for 2020.  


Follow All the Action

Beyond: The Cary Film Festival Facebook. The Cary Theater Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.