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Telluride Film Festival

“There are two kinds of film festivals: there are the mega-hyped, hoopla-infested selling circuses, and there is Telluride. It is extraordinarily exciting, in this age of the triumph of capitalism, to discover an event dedicated not to commerce, but to love. And if that sounds old-fashioned and starry-eyed, so be it. The cinema was always in the business of gazing at stars.” – Salman Rushdie 

 Check back for details on the 2020 event!

The Show

The prestigious Telluride Film Festival brings together industry masters under the auspices of the majestic San Juan Mountains. It is nothing short of a magical weekend, a celebration of film, community, and creativity. The festival notoriously keeps its film schedule a secret, but you can bet that many of the films you will see will be at the top of your Oscar picks in the next awards season. 

The festival debuted in 1973 and has since been a gathering place for industry professionals and film enthusiasts alike. The festival seeks to both honor legendary filmmakers of old and give voice to new talent. 

In addition to film screenings, the weekend includes guest speakers, symposia, discussions, and informal meet and greets. There are also numerous free events throughout the weekend such as the popular film screenings in Town Park and guest speakers in Elks Park.

Festival Pass Options

Cinephile Pass ($390) - Directed to the serious Cinephile, this pass follows a special menu of unique & often unrepeated programs, including classic film restorations, silents, Guest Director selections, selected new films and other special programs, and admission to the Labor Day picnic.

Acme Pass ($580) - Provides exclusive admission to Chuck Jones' Cinema with a sampler program culled from the overall Festival shows. This venue is located in Mountain Village. This pass grants admission to the Labor Day picnic, plus two shows of the pass holders' choice at the new venue in Town Park. 

Festival Pass ($780) - Our most popular pass, with unlimited choices of the Festival program. Provides admission on a first-come, first-seated basis to all cinemas and to all events, including the Opening Night Feed and Labor Day Picnic. 

Patron Pass ($4,900) - Includes a tax-deductible donation of $1,900 - This pass provides admission to all events in all sites. Patrons have priority seating at all theaters and are guests of honor at the Guest/Patron brunch on Thursday morning and also at the "Patron's Preview," the first screening of an important new film on Thursday afternoon. 

Sponsor Pass - This pass is issued to those who have made a major contribution to support the presentation of the Festival. It provides all Patron Pass benefits listed above, plus additional exclusive benefits and recognition. Contact the Development Director for further information at

Film Festival on a Budget

Don't be deterred by the price of a festival pass! There are plenty of ways to enjoy Film Festival without breaking the bank. 

The Late Show Pass ($60):  This pass is a great opportunity to attend the final film at two different theaters each day.

Volunteer: This is a great way to be involved in the festival! And the biggest perk is that you don't have to dip into your wallet to purchase a pas. Opportunities include ushering theater crowds, serving food, transporting equipment, and more. Visit the volunteer page on the official Telluride Film Festival website to learn more. 

Attend Free Events:

  • Free lunchtime seminars in Elks Park
  • Free "Conversations" in the County Courthouse
  • Free film premieres - one each night - in the Open Air Cinema
  • Three free "Filmmakers of Tomorrow" programs
  • Free films at the Back Lot, located in the Wilkinson Public Library

Where To Stay 

When you come to Telluride for the Film Festival, you can’t go wrong when it comes to a place to stay. While most music festivals take place at the town park on the east end of town, Film Festival takes place at a variety of venues scattered between Telluride and Mountain Village. has over 300 vacation rentals and hotel rooms to choose from. You can easily search lodging on or give us a call at (877) 358-7122 to talk to a local expert.

  • Acme Passholders attending the Telluride Film Festival and those interested in the Mountain Film Fest symposium will be spending a fair amount of time in Mountain Village. We suggest looking at any of our core condos there, as they are all just a short walk from the Mountain Village Convention Center.
  •  If you're interested in the newer blockbuster type films, you should check out our lodging on the west end of town nearby the elementary school theater and the Palm Theater.
  •  More independent, low key films will most likely be shown on the east end of town at the Opera House, The Nugget, Backlot Theaters, and Pierre. No matter what, everything is a short walk or a shuttle ride away here in Telluride.