COVID-19 Safety Protocols

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COVID-19 Safety Protocols

We’re excited to welcome you back to the 57th Chicago International Film Festival—in theaters, at the drive-in, and online. Below you will find additional details about our policies and what to expect when you return to the Theater.

Proof of Vaccination and Testing

We are requiring proof of full vaccination or negative Covid-19 PCR test result to attend the Chicago International Film Festival. Full vaccination means you have received a second dose of an authorized two-dose vaccine, or a single-dose vaccine, approved for full or emergency use from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or World Health Organization (WHO), at least 14 days prior to the date of the event. As an alternative to proof of vaccination, you may gain entry by presenting a negative PCR COVID-19 test result within 72 hours of the event.

You will need to bring one of the following and a photo ID for admission into any Festival events:

  • Physical vaccination card
  • Negative PCR test within 72 hours of event
  • Digital proof of vaccination card (photo or scan) that is clear and legible

Ticket holders who come to the theater without one of the above items will not be granted admission and not eligible for a refund.

Vaccination policies and testing protocols will also extend to Festival staff, volunteers, and filmmakers.

Additional safety protocols

  • In accordance with the Governor’s recent Executive Order, masks will be required for all staff, volunteers, filmmakers, and audience members in the Theater, regardless of vaccination status. Masks must remain on and cover the nose and mouth at all times, except when actively eating or drinking.
  • Advance ticket purchases encouraged to reduce lines and guarantee seats
  • 80% of our tickets will be available for sale to reduce capacity in theaters and venues

The Chicago International Film Festival reserves the right to require patrons who do not follow these procedures to leave the theater immediately.

Quick Checklists


  • Make sure you have your Vaccination card and Photo ID with you.
  • Please stay home if you’re not feeling well or experiencing any Covid-19 or flu-like symptoms or if you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.


  • Have your ticket(s), Vaccination card, and Photo ID ready to show to the appropriate staff or volunteer
  • Head directly to Covid Checkpoint Table to show your Vaccination card and Photo ID to collect your Safety Wristband. You will need to do this every day that you’re attending the Festival. Every day will be a different color wristband.
  • Show Ticket and Safety Wristband to staff or volunteer before entering into the theater.
    Volunteers will be very vigilant in checking that every guest is wearing one before they enter into our theater.  We will have a strict “no wristband, no entry” policy to help keep audiences, staff, volunteers, and filmmakers safe and comfortable.

These requirements apply to all ticketed Chicago International Film Festival events taking place at all Festival venues including but not limited to the AMC River East 21, Music Box Theatre, and Gene Siskel Film Center. This protocol does not extend to ChiTown Movies Drive-in where audiences will be in their cars. Requirements may vary for outdoor Festival events where social distancing is possible. Guidelines will be included in reminder communications prior to each event.

These policies are put in place to ensure that we can host in-person screenings and events at the Chicago International Film Festival while prioritizing the health and safety of staff, filmmakers, volunteers, audience members and reducing the transmission of Covid-19. These measures do not eliminate the inherent risk of potential exposure to Covid-19 in public spaces. By attending an event at any of the Festival’s host venues, you voluntarily assume all risks associated with exposure to Covid-19.

Please do not enter any Festival venues if you are feeling unwell or experiencing any COVID-19 or flu-like symptoms or if you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. You can stream our films online from home until you feel better. If you need to cancel your in-person screening, reach out to our Ticketing Team at and they will transfer your ticket to an online screening.

We will continue to review our policies on an ongoing basis to evolve with best practices around health and safety. If you have any questions, please contact

We’re looking forward to seeing you at the movies!