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The SHORTS Film Festival List

Are you a short filmmaker brainstorming about your film festival career, desperate to know which festivals you can’t miss out on?

We have created a practical short list for those who want to get a quick overview of the must have festivals, important ones and those kind of festivals that are good to keep on your radar for a specific reason.

Of course if you think there is a festival missing feel free to point it out. full text less text
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45 Festivals
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Aspen, United States |  Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE: One of the world’s premier international short film and video showcases; Oscar-qualifying international competition.
0.0 / 5
Berlin, Germany |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Docu-feature, Documentary, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE MAJOR FESTIVALS WITH SHORTS SECTION: One of the most important festivals worldwide with a special Berlinale Shorts section; shorts also have the chance to be showcased in the Perspektive Deutsches Kino, Generation and Forum Expanded sections; alongside the Bears awards there is the DAAD Short Film Prize from the Berlin Artist Program, including a three-month study stay in Berlin, financial support for a new film project, and exclusive selection for the EFA Short Film Nominee Berlin.
4.6 / 5
Toronto, Canada |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Children, Docu-feature, Documentary, Music video, Narrative fiction
0.0 / 5
Cannes, France |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE MAJOR FESTIVALS WITH SHORTS SECTION: One of the most prestigious film festivals boosting the film industry worldwide and celebrating cinema at an international level; presents a short films feature competition and a short film corner.
5.0 / 5
Chicago, United States |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: One simple goal: to introduce Chicago and the world to new filmmakers, new stories, and new points of view – stuck to that mission showing over 40 out of 150 films by first-time filmmakers in 2010.
5.0 / 5
Clermont-Ferrand, France |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE: Out of the 270 short film festivals in France, Festival du Court-Métrage de Clermont-Ferrand, is the most important. In the field of short film festivals the event is worldwide considered to be at the same high level of importance as Oberhausen and Tampere. It is the second largest film festival in France after Cannes in terms of audience and professional attendance.
4.7 / 5
Cork, Ireland |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Children, Commercial, Docu-feature, Documentary, Experimental, Hybrids, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Established in 1956; wide-ranging programme, an eclectic mix of big budget pictures, world cinema, innovative independent films, documentaries and of course shorts; major showcase for Irish film productions.
5.0 / 5
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Curta Cinema is one of the biggest and most important short film festivals in Brazil.
4.7 / 5
Edinburgh, United Kingdom |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Experimental, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: World’s oldest continuously running international film festival; has a strong track record of creating, shaping and managing innovative Talent Development programmes across all disciplines.
4.0 / 5
Bristol, United Kingdom |  Short |  
IMPORTANT ONES: UK’s longest running competitive short film and animation festival; presents one of the world’s best-known showcases and meeting points for emerging talent.
4.3 / 5
Locarno, Switzerland |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Any type, Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: One of the oldest film festivals with a magical outdoor screening area, which can accommodate up to 8,000 people; known for its great short film programming.
4.8 / 5
Dresden, Germany |   |  
IMPORTANT ONES: Since its first edition the festival has evolved from being a forum banned, with rarely shown films, into an internationally positioned festival for short films; the long tradition of animation loving was decisive for the introduction of competitions for fiction and animated films; the national competition will be awarded with prizes worth up to € 20,000.
4.6 / 5
Derry/Londonderry, United Kingdom |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Docu-feature, Documentary
IMPORTANT ONES: Non-specialized festival in North-Ireland; competition for international shorts and animations; the festival is also known for its all-Ireland competition for the best short film of interest.
0.0 / 5
Gijón, Spain |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Has a short film competition section and is open minded for films beyond the conventional cinema; includes special sections for Spanish and Asturian short films as well.
4.0 / 5
Hamburg, Germany |  Short |  Any type
MUST HAVE: From both the industry and audience perspective definitely a very relevant and successful short film festival in Germany. The festival presents an enormous range of international short films, it offers its visitors a diverse forum and is known for short filmmakers from Germany and abroad as a widely popular meeting place. The annual national and international competitions do not differentiate according to individual categories, but all forms of film are invited to participate.
4.5 / 5
East Hampton, United States |  Full length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Was founded to celebrate Independent film – long, short, fiction and documentary – and to provide a forum for independent filmmakers to express their vision; awards package worth over $200,000; Short Film Awards; qualifying competition for Academy Awards.
0.0 / 5
Hollywood, CA, United States |   |  
5.0 / 5
Rotterdam, Netherlands |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Commercial, Docu-feature, Experimental, Industrial, Multimedia, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE MAJOR FESTIVALS WITH SHORTS SECTION: Offers a quality selection of independent, innovative and experimental cinema, video and media art; Rotterdam certainly has a large audience – 2011: 340,000 admissions -; two short film awards: Tiger Awards for Short Film and NTR New Arrivals Award.
4.9 / 5
Cologne, Germany |  Mid-length, Short |  
0.0 / 5
Landshut, Germany |   |  
TO KEEP ON THE RADAR: Well known for their international award "Deadline_Award" for an outstanding Horror, Mystery, Thriller or Science Fiction Short Film.
4.5 / 5
Leuven, Belgium |  Short |  Animation, Experimental, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: One of the biggest short film festivals in Belgium with a wide range of special short sections: live-action, animated, documentaries, non-narrative, music videos, for kids and the LABO, comedy and even more.
4.1 / 5
Melbourne, Australia |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Children, Documentary, Experimental, Narrative fiction, Series
IMPORTANT ONES: Australia’s largest film event hosts a feast of cinematic delicacies from over 50 countries for seventeen days, heavily garnished with a range of parties and special events; seven short film awards that are together worth over $29,000.
5.0 / 5
Miami, United States |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Experimental, Music video, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Young festival with a mission to support local and international filmmakers supporting the philosophy that today’s short films lead to tomorrow’s world-renowned filmmakers.
5.0 / 5
Montreal, Canada |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Is one of Canada’s oldest international festivals and the only competitive film festival in North America accredited by the FIAPF; includes worldwide competition with two prizes for shorts.
4.0 / 5
Moscow, Russia |  Full length, Short |  Docu-feature, Documentary, Experimental, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Is the only classified A Festival in Russia; since 1972 accredited at FIAPF as an international film festival competition; specialized Short Film Corner.
3.0 / 5
Oberhausen, Germany |  Short |  Music video, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE: The oldest short film festival worldwide; innovative video on-demand platform for its filmmaker attendees; as important as Clermont Ferrand and Tampere.
4.7 / 5
Odense, Denmark |  Short |  
IMPORTANT ONES: Danish short film festival with a long and successful tradition; offers a varied and experimental film programme with thought-provoking experiences, debates, workshops, concerts and more. And all this for free! The outcome is a clear-cut and all-round short film programme filled with fiction, animation and documentary, which leaves room for all variations of films; both a national and international competitions.
5.0 / 5
Palm Springs, United States |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Student
MUST HAVE: Renowned worldwide for the extraordinary community of filmmakers it attracts, and the quality and scope of its programming; ShortFest Film Market showcases over 2,700 films to film buyers, industry representatives and the press.
4.6 / 5
Prague, Czech Republic |  Short |  Any type
IMPORTANT ONES: Initiated by the producers of the International Karlovy Vary Festival due to the massive amount of short admissions.
5.0 / 5
London, United Kingdom |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Docu-feature, Documentary, Experimental, Mini-series, Multimedia, Music video, Narrative fiction, Series, Student, Web
MUST HAVE MAJOR FESTIVALS WITH SHORTS SECTION: Aims to reflect the cultural, visual and narrative diversity of the international independent filmmaking community and specializes in films by first-time directors; awards for Best UK Short and Best International Short.
4.0 / 5
San Francisco, United States |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  
IMPORTANT ONES: The longest-running film festival in America held for two weeks; annual audience with an average of more than 80,000; ten Golden Gate awards for shorts.
4.0 / 5
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina |  Full length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
TO KEEP ON THE RADAR: This festival is the main meeting place for all regional producers and authors and is recognized by film professionals from all over the world as the pinnacle point for networking. The main focus is the region of Southeast Europe (Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece. Hungary, FYR Macedonia, Malta, Monte Negro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey, UNMI Kosovo) and its filmmakers which compete in Feature, Short and Documentary. The Competition program is accredited by FIAPF. The festival also aims to present important and innovative films of high artistic value made throughout the world. In cooperation with Berlinale and Talent Campus the festival is organizing the Sarajevo Talent Campus. This exciting new educational and creative platform became the most prestigious film training event in the region. The festival programs are visited by 100.000 people each year. The total amount for the awards is worth around 200,000 €.
5.0 / 5
Potsdam , Germany |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Children, Documentary, Music video, Narrative fiction, Student
TO KEEP ON THE RADAR; Worldwide known as one of the most important and oldest students film festivals. The event is taking place in Potsdam, Germany. During seven eventful days in the beginning of May the visitor has on the one hand the chance to discover exciting cinematic works, whilst on the other hand the festival offers great possibilities for mutual exchange between filmmakers, professionals and the public. The very friendly and energetic team consists of students of the Academy of film and television in Potsdam. They really know how to party and make this event unforgettable.
4.3 / 5
Park City, UT, United States |  Full length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Experimental, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Started in 1995 by a group of independent artists, the festival continues to be organized and programmed exclusively by filmmakers for other filmmakers; writing competitions for features, shorts, teleplays and horror scripts; the Anarchy Online Short Film Competition; and a $99 Special short film production project.
0.0 / 5
Park City Utah, United States |  Full length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Festival is held in Utah; underlines the importance of short films as a place to discover great filmmaker talents; a pioneer and leader in using online exhibition channels for shorts; offers Shortlabs and workshops throughout the year in LA, NY and Chicago.
4.3 / 5
Sydney, Australia |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Any type, Animation, Children, Docu-feature, Documentary, Experimental, Hybrids, Narrative fiction, TV
IMPORTANT ONES: One of the longest running events of its kind in the world; hosts the prestigious Dendy Awards for Australian short film award $5,000 in five categories; winners of the Live Action category and Yoram Gross Animation Awards are Academy Award qualifying.
3.8 / 5
São Paulo, Brazil |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
MUST HAVE: The biggest short film festival in Latin America with a huge international and Latin-American display.
4.0 / 5
Zabok, Croatia |  Short |  Animation, Documentary, Experimental, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Young Croatian film festival; domestic and international competition; working together with the European Film Academy and with their help they will present two film programmes nominated for the prestigious EFA award.
4.0 / 5
Tampere, Finland |  Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
Tampere is one of the finest short film festivals. Tampere and Oberhausen are the only two short film festivals accredited with international film producers association FIAPF.
4.8 / 5
Thessaloniki, Greece |   |  Any type, Animation, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: For the Balkan area the festival is definitely one of the most influential ones for short films. Renowned for its selection and screening of progressive and high quality films.
5.0 / 5
Toronto, Canada |  Full length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: The secret of the Festival’s success is its unique combination of two parallel festivals: one for a large audience passionate about film and one for the world’s press and industry; no competition; special programme for Canadian films: Canada First! with Canadian first feature-length films, and Short Cuts Canada; accredited with FIAPF.
4.3 / 5
New York, United States |  Full length, Short |  Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Lower Manhattan festival founded in 2002 with the mission to enable the international film community and the general public to experience the power of film by redefining the film festival experience; shorts awards for narrative, documentary, and student visionary.
4.1 / 5
Houston, United States |  Full length, Mid-length, Short |  Any type
IMPORTANT ONES: International Film & Video Festival, which is one of the oldest and largest film & video competitions in the world; in fact the happening is actually 12 major film & video competitions in one event; screens just 55-60 feature film and premieres 100 short films.
4.0 / 5
Zagreb, Croatia |   |  
IMPORTANT ONES: Croatian film festival featuring three separate international competition programmes: feature film, short film, documentary, and one competition for Croatian shorts.
5.0 / 5
Bilbao, Spain |  Mid-length, Short |  Animation, Documentary, Narrative fiction
IMPORTANT ONES: Festival with a long tradition in short film exhibition and competition.
4.7 / 5