There are SO MANY film festivals and competitions available for young people to participate in here in Australia and Internationally. If you're creating films in class, you can add some extra excitement for keen students by encouraging them to share their work throught the kids festival circuit or enter into a competition. We've put a list together for you of some of the opportunities available.
FILM FESTIVALS & COMPETITIONS FOR STUDENTS & YOUNG PEOPLE
ACMI Screen It!
Screen It is Australia's national film, animation and game making competition for school-age students. Designed to encourage imagination and inventiveness in primary and secondary school students, Screen It fosters a new generation of young moving image makers.
Unlike other student moving image competitions, Screen It is designed to provide rich education outcomes for participants, with comprehensive education packs provided to assist in the production process.
- Primary & Secondary Students
- Entries open around August and close in September, online workshops run from about March
- No entry fee
- Animated Film 30-180 seconds; Live Action Film Maximum 3-minutes (Junior & Middle) and 5 minutes (Senior); Videogame Maximum 500MB
Visit ACMI Screen It!
Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize
The University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize is offered to primary and high school students nationally. If you have a passion for science and for communicating ideas, then enter this competition by telling a scientific story via a short video piece. We’re looking for the next generation of Dr Karls and Adam Spencers!
The idea is to communicate a scientific concept(s) in a way that is accessible and entertaining to the public while painlessly increasing their science knowledge or, as the Sleek Geeks like to say, “learn without noticing”.
- For Primary and Secondary students
- 1-3 minute film that tells a real scientific storu
- Prizes awarded
- Entries typically due in early May
Visit Sleek Geeks
Smartfone Flick Fest
SmartFone Flick Fest is Australia’s only international smartphone film festival for filmmakers of all ages.
We are an international festival open to anyone with a smartphone or tablet and a great idea for a short film.
SF3 provides a platform for budding filmmakers to bring their ideas to life and have their films seen by a global audience, without the need for lots of fancy equipment or a big budget.
- Entry Fee is $10 for students
- Films must be a maximum of 6-minutes and 30-seconds
- Submissions typically due in August with the awards night taking place later that month in Paddington, Sydney NSW
- Prizes to be won
Visit Smartfone Flick Fest
Real Film Festival
The RFF has been created to educate and inspire film production across all levels of proficiency and the short film competition is an integral party of the festival. The short films will be judged by some of Australia’s most experienced industry film professions who will provide feedback on all films, so the filmmaker can identify their current strengths and weaknesses. We encourage students, schools, emerging and established filmmakers to enter the short film competition where there are many prizes to be won.
The facts on which your film is based must be documented and/or verified. Verification in the form of a photo, a newspaper article, news report, medical certificate, historical research, academic journal entry, etc. must be submitted with your entry. The Festival representatives reserve the right to request more documentation if the information received is judged insufficient. Fictional stories will be ineligible.
- Film duration maximum of 12 minutes
- Entry fee is $25-35 per film
- Entries typically close early September
Visit Real Film Festival
Modelled on the world’s largest short film festival, Tropfest, Trop Jr is a short filmmaking competition and a free, outdoor festival for kids aged 15 years and younger. Tropfest hosts the largest live audience for short films in the country, as a free, outdoor festival. Now in its ninth year, Trop Jr follows the same format as all Tropfest competitions, in that all entries must be made specifically for the festival, be no longer than 7 minutes, and feature the Trop Jr Signature Item, which in 2017 is mask.
- For filmmakers 15 years and under
- Entries typically open August to October
- Festival is on 10 February 2017, Parramatta Park NSW
Visit Trop Jnr
FLiCKERFEST, Australia’s premier international short film festival, will be held at the Bondi Pavilion on Sydney’s famous Bondi Beach in January 2017. The Festival in 2017 will celebrate 26 years of screening the best short films from Australia and around the world in competitions and special showcases. Following the Festival in Sydney, a selection of films will go on tour to 50+ capital cities and regional centres around Australia.
FlickerUp Flickerfest’s Australian Youth & Schools Competition – open to films from students enrolled in primary or secondary schools in Australia, or individuals under 18. This competition will be divided into 2 sections: one for primary age and one for secondary age students for films under 35mins.
- Event runs in January
- Deadline for FlickerUp is typically September or October
- Primary & Secondary School students or Filmmakers under Eighteen Years of age
- Films must be under 35 minutes
- Entry is about $40-$45 per film
Little Big Shots
Little Big Shots is Australia's largest and only annual touring film festival curated especially for kids. Featuring a selection of short and feature films, the festival lands in all major Australian capital cities. A kids jury awards the best international, local, and child-made films each year and the films play to an audience of over 20,000 across the country.
Little Big Shots predominantly screens short films (productions running for less than 60 minutes). However, feature length films (productions of 60 minutes or longer) will also be considered.
Little Big Shots defines child-made films as films made by children and teenagers under 18 at the time of production. An adult supervisor is allowed but the film must be conceived and created mostly by children.
- Standard Fee $10 USD
- Opens July and closes December, and the Festival is about the first week in July
Visit Little Big Shots
KidzFlicks, the Sydney International Festival of Films by Children, is a week long celebration of films made by children 12 years of age and younger. KidzFlicks offers young Australian filmmakers the opportunity to screen their work for a wider audience. KidzFlicks also brings films by children from over 30 other countries onto Australian screens, enabling Australian children to see their own filmmaking in a truly international context.
- For children in Year 6 or younger (in Australian that usually means a person is 12 or younger)
- No entry fee
- Entries typically due in December
- Maximum of 5 entries per child
- There are over 24 awards for Australian and International entries
- All films will be screened at least once during the festival at Screenings for Schools and Public Screenings
This is a high school film competition open to all residents of Australia and New Zealand. This is a film festival for students by students. The incredible talent of young filmmakers across the country, ensures the yearly event is of a high calibre and not to be missed.
The STUFFit Student Film Festival Event is held in Maroochydore Queensland. The winner and runner-up for each category will receive an awesome piece of film equipment for their prize. Throughout the year, the STUFFit Student Film Festival organises and hosts a variety of workshops. There are also workshops on the day of the festival event at Birch, Carroll and Coyle, just prior to the screening.
- No time constraints
- Categories: Live film (Junior/Senior); Animation (Junior/Senior); Documentary; Experimental; Music Video; Commercial/ Trailer; Interactive Media
- Entry Fees $15-20 per film or Schools Entry $60 for 6 films
- Entries typically due July to September
- Festival Event Day typically in November
Visit Stuff it
1-Minute Film Competition
The 1-Minute Film Competition is an initiative of Australian Teachers of Media (ATOM) and ClickView. It provides Australian and New Zealand primary and secondary–school students with the opportunity to make a 60-second short film or animation, and win fantastic prizes in the process.
- 2017’s theme is ‘Tomorrow’
- Primary & Secondary Students
- Entry is free
- Each film must be no longer than 60 seconds.
- Entries close midday AEST, Friday 28 July 2017
Visit 1-Minute Film Competition
Heart of Gold Young(er) at Heart - School age short film competition
School students across the country are invited to submit their own short films as part of the Heart of Gold Festival. This is the perfect opportunity to get your students’ work judged and gain professional recognition. Students can submit assessment pieces, foreign language films, documentaries or start from scratch. All we ask for is that all submissions be compliant with Department of Education guidelines and Heart of Gold values.
- Secondary students (Australian schools only)
- Entry is free
- Length 3-7 minutes
- Entries typically close end of August
- Festival takes place in Gympie, Queensland in October
Visit Heart of Gold
Cinesnaps Schools Program (WA)
The annual CinefestOZ Cinesnaps Short Film Competition encourages young, aspiring South West filmmakers to create and showcase original short film. The film is based on a specific theme set each year by CinefestOZ and can be a live action or animated film of 3-5 minutes duration. Participants need to be 15-18 years old and attending secondary school. The competition encourages South West students to explore the medium of film and use multi-media formats for production, awareness, marketing and audience reach.
- For 15-18 year olds
- 3-5 minute duration
- Live Action or Animated Film
- 2017 theme: The Birthday Card
- Closes 30 June 2017
- CinefestOZ Festival week is 23-27 August 2017
Visit Cinesnaps Schools Program
The KIDS FIRST! Film Festival is a showcase for children's films, TV shows and DVDs from major studios and independent filmmakers. KIDS FIRST! Film Festival partners with more than 50 venues nationwide who host screenings of KIDS FIRST! Film Festival accepted films year-round.
Youth are given a true voice - as curators, as audience members, as film critics, as volunteer staff and as filmmakers showing their work. Almost one-third of the films accepted every year are from student filmmakers.
- Entry fees $15-25
- Deadline is 28 February 2017
- Festival dates 15 April 2017 to 13 April 2018
Visit Kids First
Boston International Kids Film Festival
We live in a media-saturated world. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, young people spend an average of 7.5 hours a day on entertainment media, including televisions, computers, phones and other electronic devices.
Media literacy and skills have never been more essential. This is why Filmmakers Collaborative created the Boston International Kids Film Festival: to help young people to use the media so that it doesn’t use them.
Developed by professional filmmakers and educators, the festival offers thought-provoking films from around the world that are made for kids and by kids, and a variety of hands-on workshops that will enable the next generation of filmmakers to realize the power and potential of media.
- Entry fees for student films $20USD
- Deadline is typically end of July
- A runtime of any length is accepted
- For students in years 7-12
- Festival takes place in early November
Do you know of any other festivals or competitions? Share them with the DAF.Ed community.