The Best Shorts Competition

Celebrating Short Films, Television and New Media worldwide. Our mission is to support filmmakers!

The Best Shorts Competition is unique in the industry. Attracting both powerhouse companies as well as talented new filmmakers it is an exceptional, truly international awards competition, not a traditional film festival – which allows filmmakers from around the world to enter their films in this prestigious competition. Our talented Best Shorts award winners have gone on to win Oscar, Emmy, Telly and other awards.

Currently in its 9th year, the Best Shorts is an avant-garde worldwide competition that strives to give talented directors, producers, actors, new media creators and members of the creative teams a unique venue for their work and the positive exposure they deserve. It discovers and honors the achievements of filmmakers who produce high quality shorts and new media.

Best Shorts promotes award winners through press releases to over 43,000 filmmakers, industry contacts and global media / distribution outlets.

The popularity of the Short Film genre increases every year. Options for festival directors have grown by leaps and bounds as more and more short films are created by talented filmmakers. Every film deserves the chance to be seen and with the main goal of traditional film festivals to bring entertainment to local audiences…this can make the filmmaker of secondary importance. At Best Shorts Competition, every film entered is judged on its own merits by our panels of Emmy, Telly and Communicator award nominees and winners.

Serving filmmakers is Best Short’s primary goal!

What kind of media:

The Best Shorts Competition is an excellent venue for films, documentaries, new and experimental media, television pilot programs, animation, educational programs, remixes & mashups, movie trailers, music videos, webisodes and tube length works. As long as the entry is 57 minutes or less, it is eligible for submission.

Where our filmmakers are from:

The Best Shorts Competition puts filmmakers first and provides a direct opportunity for recognition and publicity for high quality films and documentaries. It is international in scope and has granted awards to producers in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bali, Barbados, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Colombia, Cuba, Cyprus, Denmark, Ecuador, El Salvador, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Kuwait, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Martinique, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Korea, Republic of Mauritius, Romania, Russia, Samoa, Serbia, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Syrian Arab Republic, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, USA and more!

Benefits of Participating:

• Promotional Laurels – give your film opening and graphics that wow factor!
• Peer Review – our judges are filmmakers who understand the craft and what audiences want.
• Publicity Enhancement – Winners are announced to a database of 44,000+ email industry professionals as well as additional international media outlets.
• Press Release - We provide a fill-in-the-blanks Press Release to help you promote your win. We've done the heavy lifting - just fill it in and send to media outlets that suit your work!
• Social Media Push – Facebook and Twitter announcements of winners and updates from our filmmaking community can be shared with your own lists.

Judging and Award Levels

Each year Best Shorts Competition receives thousands of entries. Quality and creativity are celebrated in four levels of awards: Best of Show, Award of Excellence, Award of Merit and Award of Recognition.

The judging takes place by in-house staff and a committee of industry professionals including Emmy, Telly and Communicator award nominees and recipients.

As with the Telly and regional Emmy Awards, entries do not compete against each other. Instead, entries are judged against a high standard of merit and are scored accordingly. Judges score entries on a performance scale and winning entries are recognized and awarded as Best of Show, Awards of Excellence, Awards of Merit, Awards of Recognition or no award.

Best of Show honors are granted to the top scoring entry for each season. Awards of Excellence are granted to entries with truly exceptional filmmaking. Notable artistic and technical productions are recognized at the Awards of Merit award level and Awards of Recognition recognizes achievement in a specific category of entry.

No fixed numbers of awards are granted at any level but rather fluctuate based on the total number of entries received for each competition deadline.


Each submission received will be confirmed by FilmFreeway and Best Shorts Competition administrative offices via electronic mail.

After judging is completed, winners in all categories will be notified of their award and are provided additional information such as links to winner’s laurels etc.

Winning films are also announced by social media and a press release is sent to five international media distribution outlets.

Humanitarian Award:

Best Shorts is a competition with a conscience. Each year the Best Shorts Competition grants its Annual Humanitarian Award for dedicated service to Ecological, Political, Social Justice, Health and Wellness, Animals, Wildlife, Conservation and Spiritual importance. Films meeting these criteria and recognized at the Award of Excellence level can be nominated for the Humanitarian Award by any of the judges. All nominated films are then reviewed at the end of each year and awards granted. Each year the judges will select one Grand Prize winner and award Outstanding Achievement and Award of Distinction to all deserving films.

Rules / Eligibility

1. Entries MUST be 57 minutes or less. (If you would like to enter a feature length film, documentary, or feature television program, please submit to the Accolade Global Film Competition at and the IndieFEST Film Awards at

2. Submissions in other than English must be subtitled.

3. Multiple entries are allowed from a filmmaker and each entry may be entered in multiple categories.

4. Online screeners are mandatory. If you choose not to upload your project to FilmFreeway’s site, please provide an online link to your submission and be sure to include the password in an email correspondence sent directly to Best Shorts Competition. If you choose to send a DVD screener as well, please format it in NTSC, label the cover with the FilmFreeway Tracking ID, film title, filmmaker name and telephone number, and forward it to the Best Shorts Competition mailing address.

5. Best Shorts Competition does not download submissions or accept Dropbox submissions. Please only send links to your media hosted on 3rd party servers such as Vimeo or YouTube.

6. Written comments describing entries are beneficial.

7. DVD Entries will not be returned.

8. All films submitted under a “Student Fee” category will be listed as a (Student) on all materials including social media and press releases. Student I.D. required.


The Best Shorts Competition statuette is exceptional in this industry and is a work of art. Covered with 24k gold, it is manufactured by the company that makes the worlds’ most prestigious and celebrated awards, the Oscar, Clio, and Accolade.

Sister Competitions:

The Best Shorts Competition sister competitions are the Accolade Global Film Competition (, which celebrates outstanding media of every variety around the globe, the Impact DOCS Awards ( serving documentary filmmakers and spreading their messages around the globe, and the IndieFEST Film Awards (, which celebrates outstanding independent films. All four competitions share administrative offices but have independent judging and judging results from one competition will not influence the outcome of the other

Overall Rating
  • J.C. Abraham De Palma


    May 2020
  • Nickel Road Productions

    Loved being a part of this festival! Very professional and communication with them was wonderful. This is a festival I will always recommend for filmmakers to take part in. Thank you BSC for a great festival experience!!

    May 2020
  • I was thrilled and honoured that my film, Thirty Minutes received an Award of Excellence in three categories in the Best Shorts Competition and was also very impressed by the clear and detailed communication from Best Shorts, not to mention the support! Thank you and a big shout-out to Rick and the team, who clearly love, not only their work, but also, filmmakers! Am very happy to be part of the Best Shorts Family!

    May 2020
  • I will submit again and again, simple, easy with great communication and prompt replies. 👌
    I highly recommend the Best shorts Competition & team!👏👏👏👏👏 Sister Comps equally great too!
    CHEERS! 🥂😊🥂X4 Awards 🏆🏆🏆🏆🎄🐊🐊🎄 for Merry Crocmas

    April 2020
  • Richard Zelniker

    You and your festival were terrific. You guys were so generous and extending in all areas. Thanks for including Beckoned in the awards. We appreciate the notice. Your fest is great!

    April 2020