AIA Film Challenge 2020

The AIA Film Challenge 2020 invites architects and filmmakers to collaborate to share stories of architects and civic leaders working together to combat climate change in their communities.

Participants produce a three- to five-minute documentary-style film  to win up to $5,000 plus travel and hotel for two to see their film screened at Chicago Ideas in October. Winners will also receive exposure on AIA’s online channels, as well as via partner film and architecture organizations.

A panel of judges made up of architects and film/media professionals will select the Grand Prize Winner, the Runner Up, and the Third Place Winner based on the films’ adherence to the prompt, storytelling arc, architectural placement, and technical merit. There is also a People’s Choice Award winner chosen by public voting that opens on August 19.

Download the official rules >
Download the Film Challenge Toolkit >


Why join the Film Challenge

  • “Not only did the project help drive traffic to Boxville, it also helped the surrounding community by inviting people to learn more about the Bronzeville Community in general.”

    Sharon M. Samuels, Architect
    2017 Finalist with The Story of Boxville

  • “My experience participating in the AIA Film Challenge has been rewarding in so many ways beyond what I could have imagined. It is a great opportunity to bring light to social issues around the country, but it’s also a great opportunity to showcase your skills as a storyteller.”

    Myles Kramer, Filmmaker
    2017 Winner with Community by Design- Skid Row Housing Trust

  • "Winning the People’s Choice Award and a screening at Chicago Ideas was a breath of fresh air. I now feel like people want to see and learn more about the Hawaiian culture and indigenous architecture."

    MarQ Morrison, Filmmaker
    2018 People’s Choice Award winner with Ka Hale: A Revival


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