FirstGlance Film Festival

About us

FirstGlance Film Festivals are the world's longest running, twice yearly, bi-coastal film festivals, started in 1996 in Philadelphia, and in 2000 a sister festival in Los Angeles Hollywood. In 2020, the 23rd FirstGlance Philadelphia Film Festival will be virtual and physical due to the ongoing pandemic. Join "One of the Top 100 Indie Film Festivals in the World" this Fall for a wide array of award-winning films from Philadelphia and across the globe. From Features to web series, join us for amazing screenings, panels and an awards show, you can watch right from your couch.


Dates & Deadlines

  • November 10, 2020

    Festival Starts


Inspiring story of Contralto Marian Anderson the first African American to sing at Carnegie Hall
A light-hearted comedy about the sweetest fiancé giving her boyfriend the best present ever.


Director: Ohna Falby

A nineteen year old struggling with her mental health is contemplating ending her life. On the train to her Nan’s, her journey is interrupted by another young woman’s death.
The U.S. is in the midst of an opioid overdose epidemic. Once upon a time the nation’s homeless and drug user was connected to poverty or “poor character.” Today all of society shares in its deadly path. Kensington, a Philadelphia neighborhood lingers in its wake.

How Long

Director: Les Stroud

As an artist, my favourite projects are when I can combine art with a message that goes beyond style and mood—compelling the viewer to ponder, question, confront, and most importantly, take action. In ‘How Long,’ Les uses his musical powers to challenge citizens of the planet to take responsibility to do their part to protect the future of a beloved earth.
Meet Doug Harper, an Ivy League educated, uptown therapist forced to move his practice to Kensington, the roughest blue collar section of Philadelphia. It's a place where therapy is foreign and the people eat lightning, shit thunder and thrive on confrontation.
An animated film based on the renowned children's book that has been educating young children about the Holocaust for generations. Over the last three decades, the beloved children’s book by Marvell Ginsburg, "The Tattooed Torah," has been a powerful resource for Holocaust education for children all over the world. The film brings illustrator Martin Lemelman’s rich artwork to life, and will allow this story to reach a much broader audience all over the world. Now more than ever, it is essential to continue teaching the lessons of the Holocaust to young children in an impactful and palatable way, so that such horrific events are never forgotten and never repeated. The film is presented by The Goldrich Family Foundation in association with USC Shoah Foundation, executive producers Melinda Goldrich and Stephen Smith, produced by Lisa Effress of 11 Dollar Bill, animation by Jeffrey Pittle and Christian Robins, original score by Daniel Alcheh and recorded by The Bow Tie Orchestra and Choir of Moscow, co-written by Brett Kopin and Marc Bennett, story by Greg Ferkel, directed by Marc Bennett, and narrated by Ed Asner.
Music Video for the song Said No Lover by Aaron Gibson & Nahuel Bronzini. A song about leaving everything you love, and the demons that follow you.
A suburban basketball star struggles to impress the uncompromising coach of his new inner-city school


Director: Viren Shinde

Luna, a new, artificially intelligent robot, takes a mind of her own for the supposed greater good.
A deep dive into the eclectic world of Philadelphia street art and public art. Philadelphia is the mural capital of the world, but murals are not the only art occupying Philly's unique streets. Whether it be "graffiti", "street art", or "muralism", one thing remains true... in this city art is everywhere. Our film consults some of the best authorities on public art/street art, thoroughly exploring this eclectic, ever-changing, and exciting art scene. Utilizing the stunning visuals of the city, in tandem with compelling interviews, we are excited to showcase the fabulous line-up of artists, journalists, and more.
During the summer of '66, a former rodeo champion and cattle auctioneer from Oklahoma bonds tightly with his young grandson from suburban Pennsylvania while teaching him a few tricks from his previous trades.
A group of women, fed up and on the cusp of middle age, turn their book club into a punk band.
In September 1945, in spite of anonymous phone calls to pageant judges warning them not to let a Jew win, Bess Myerson – the daughter of struggling immigrants from Russia – became the first and only Jewish Miss America. The only college graduate among the contestants, Bess won the swimsuit competition, tied for first in talent, and was top-ranked in interviews and evening wear. Yet pageant sponsors withdrew the $5,000 scholarship and the new Ford car — and then her Miss America tour ended early when race-restricted hotels and concert venues closed their doors to a Jew. Heartbroken, Bess returned to her family’s one-bedroom apartment in a Jewish housing project in the Bronx mid-year. Instead, she partnered with the Anti-Defamation League on a speaking tour to schools to share her message of tolerance and respect for others. Bess’s inspiring story is told through historic photographs, film clips, and interviews with Bess Myerson’s daughter Barra Grant; Bess’s friend Abraham Foxman, ADL director emeritus; and Prof. Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.