18th Calgary Underground Film Festival

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$10 Single Tickets, $139 All-Access Passes Buy Tickets
Contact 403-444-8315 (Calgary Underground Film Festival)
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The Calgary Underground Film Festival has announced a selection of films and live events playing the upcoming festival taking place online (April 23 – May 2) and drive-ins (June 3-5, 2021).

“We always love showcasing local films and our talented crews. I’m excited for the Alberta films we’re screening this year,” said Festival Director & Lead Programmer Brenda Lieberman.

“We also look forward to our classics, that are newly curated each festival, and well-loved events -– such as our Saturday Morning Cartoons, and the Found Footage Festival. CUFF wouldn’t be the same without either of those.”

The festival also launched a new podcast called CUFFcast, which takes listeners on a wild ride through the world of weird, underground & fantastic films with the Calgary Underground Film Festival (World’s 50 Best Genre Film Festivals 2021 – MovieMaker).

Hosted by CUFF Lead programmer Cameron Macgowan, along with the CUFF team, the podcast features candid interviews with the twisted brains behind cutting-edge genre cinema. The first episode includes interviews with Robin Bougie about his highly influential zine Cinema Sewer and FX-Wizard Steven Kostanski about the blu-ray release of PSYCHO GOREMAN (Off the CUFF 2020 Selection).

This year’s lineup will include 30+ films and online events, which will be available to stream for 10 days as part of the 18th edition of the festival. There will be a mix of films available to watch on-demand, live streams, panels, and Q&As with filmmakers.

First Wave Announcement

Alberta Features

  • BLOODTHIRSTY Directed by Amelia Moses (Local Producers Michael Peterson and Wendy Hill-Tout): An indie singer struggling to write her sophomore album heads to the secluded cabin of a mysterious producer and begins a deep transformation of both body and mind in this Alberta werewolf thriller.
  • RANGE ROADS Directed, Written & Produced by Kyle Thomas (Local Producers Alexander Carson and Sara Corry): Television actor Frankie King struggles to confront the past when she returns to her hometown in rural Alberta after her parents are killed in a tragic car accident.

Music Documentaries

  • HEARTWORN HIGHWAYS (1976) – RE-RELEASE Directed by James Szalapski: A newly-restored documentary of the cult classic about the radical country artists that changed the course of country music history. Presented by Sled Island.
  • VINYL NATION Directed by Christopher Boone And Kevin Smokler: A deep dig into the crates of the vinyl record resurgence to discover what an old technology says about our relationship to music and each other in a divided time in America.

Annual Live Events

  • FOUND FOOTAGE FESTIVAL: TAPE TRADING CLASSICS – Live on Thursday, April 29 at 7 p.m.: Hosts Joe Pickett (The Onion) and Nick Prueher (Late Show) take you back in time to the pre-internet 90s to resurrect the best “tape traded” videos passed from weirdo to weirdo on VHS. SATURDAY MORNING ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT-CEREAL (AT HOME) CARTOON PARTY!
  • Live on Saturday, May 1 at 9 a.m.: The cartoon lineup is always a mystery, but in this all-new program, you’ll see both faves and obscurities spanning the ’60s through the ’90s, all punctuated with vintage commercials, PSAs and station IDs! To complement this 3-hour trip into the weird and wonderful world of yesteryear’s animated antics, we encourage you to stay in your jammies and pick up your favourite sugary cereals.
  • LIVE SCRIPT READING: HURT THEM – Live on Saturday, May 1 at 2 p.m.: The interactive live event includes a script reading of the upcoming production HURT THEM directed by Calgary filmmaker Michael Peterson. The violent revenge thriller tells the story of an elderly man in a nursing home that’s drawn into bloody games, which he thought that he left behind 50 years ago.

This year CUFF also introduced a new cash prize for our Best Canadian Short Award. Sponsored by the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC), the Best Canadian Short Award winner will receive a $2500 cash prize plus a DGC mentor partner for their next project along with a $2500 gift certificate donated by William F. White International Inc.


For 18 years, the Calgary Underground Film Festival has been dedicated to elevating Calgary’s
cultural landscape with the best in international independent cinema. We’re now Western Canada’s premiere genre festival, and one of Calgary’s most anticipated events for film fans. In 2021 CUFF was named one of the World’s 50 Best Genre Film Festivals by MovieMaker Magazine and continues to attract audiences with its programming of films that engage audiences and defy convention.