Most student-led film festivals are hosted on college campuses, for college students, and many have pricey entry fees. But the Philadelphia Youth Film Festival is different.

Founded by Germantown Friends School students Eli Eisenstein ’18, Hyunji Kim ’18, Noah Weinstein ’19, and Adina Gewirtzman ’18, this inaugural event is committed to showcasing the work of high school filmmakers, and to making the film festival experience accessible to ninth-through-twelfth graders – free of charge.

On Saturday, Nov.4, from 12 to 6 p.m., Germantown Friends School will host the first Philadelphia Youth Film Festival, welcoming teen filmmakers from the Philadelphia area and beyond.

From almost 100 films submitted by high-school age students throughout the United States and the world, 12 were selected as award winners in four categories (narrative, documentary, experimental/other, and screenplay). The winning students represent six states (Pennsylvania, Georgia, Massachusetts, Virginia, Washington, and Colorado) and four foreign countries (Canada, Iran, United Kingdom, and Portugal).

Admission to the festival is free for all high school students (I.D. required), and the six-hour event will feature a keynote speaker, workshops by professionals in the filmmaking industry, and a screening of the winning films. It offers teenage filmmakers a great opportunity to show off their work, receive critiques from industry experts and network with peers and professionals from the area.

Eli Eisenstein ’18, one of the festival’s creators, said he can’t wait for the creative communality the event will offer.

“If there’s anything I love more than making movies, it’s sharing them, especially when I know their creators,” he said. “There’s a thrill to recognizing the distinct mark of a director and letting them sweep you along on their adventure.”

Students interested in attending the festival can register on the Philadelphia Youth Film Festival website at