We have prepared potentially permanent antimicrobial films based on surface-modified microfibrillated cellulose (MFC). MFC, obtained by disintegration of bleached softwood sulfite pulp in a homogenizer, was grafted with the quaternary ammonium compound octadecyldimethyl(3-trimethoxysilylpropyl)ammonium chloride (ODDMAC) by a simple adsorption-curing process. Films prepared from the ODDMAC-modified MFC were characterized by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and tested for antibacterial activity against the Gram-positive bacterium Staphylococcus aureus and the Gram-negative bacteria Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The films showed substantial antibacterial capacity even at very low concentrations of antimicrobial agent immobilized on the surface. A zone of inhibition test demonstrated that no ODDMAC diffused into the surroundings, verifying that the films were indeed of the nonleaching type.