There are plenty of filmmakers who rush to finish their film for Sundance, fill out the paperwork, send off the DVD, and then... stop. There's nothing wrong with waiting anxiously to hear from what is arguably the world's most famous film festival, but if you're not submitting to other festivals while you wait you could miss out on the entire Spring season. Break out your list of target festivals (see chapter one of Film Festival Secrets for more on this) and get cracking. Here's a handy (but by no means complete) list of festivals with upcoming deadlines. Check each festival's web site for their late deadlines, submission rules, etc.
Edit: I should point out that I picked these festivals for their relative prominence and for the fact that their deadlines come before the Sundance notification date (around Thanksgiving). If you're a festival director and would like to post your own upcoming deadline in the comments, please feel free.
- Slamdance - October 30
- Dallas International - October 30
- Phoenix - October 30
- Cleveland - November 30
- Gen Art - October 31
- South By Southwest - November 5
- Florida Film Festival - November 20