Canada Shorts is proud to champion short filmmaking. We strive to award quality shorts regardless of their budget. We want to ensure indie filmmakers have the opportunity for festival success.

Canada Shorts works hard to recognize quality filmmaking and we offer awards based on these tiers: Best-of winners, Finalist Awards, Awards of Excellence, Awards of Distinction, Awards of Commendation, Awards of Merit and Honorable Mentions.

In total we award 120+ short films every season. We screen best-of winners, and genre winners during the festival.

Canada Shorts is an IMDB qualified festival.

2022 Awards and placings

2021-2015 Awards and placings --> click 'Results & Awards' and select the year

We champion short filmmaking and strive to award quality shorts regardless of their budget:

• Best Short / Grand Prize
• Best Canadian Short
• Best International Short
• Best Director
• Best Writer
• Best Cinematography
• Best Music Score

• Best Action/Adventure
• Best Comedy
• Best Crime/Suspense
• Best Documentary
• Best Drama
• Best Experimental Film
• Best Family/Animated
• Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy
• Best Thriller/Horror

• Finalist Awards
• Awards of Excellence
• Awards of Distinction
• Awards of Commendation
• Awards of Merit
• Honorable Mentions

• We accept Canadian and International shorts.
• Maximum film length 30 minutes (we have no minimum length).
• Films in languages other than English will only be accepted with English subtitles.

To be eligible for entry in the Canadian Short category, your film must have been shot in Canada, OR the director or screenwriter must be Canadian.

If your short was not shot in Canada, or your director/writer are not Canadian then please enter it under our International Short category.

Submissions will be judged and scored based on criteria including: quality of screenplay (story, dialogue, character arcs etc), acting, production quality, originality, technical proficiency, cinematography, sound design, editing, locations and set design. We support indie filmmaking and will award additional points to shorts produced on a micro budget and/or minimal crew.

Your selection and award classification will be posted on our website. Canada Shorts works hard to recognize quality filmmaking and tends to offer awards to 120+ short films per season. That is considerably more than we could possibly screen. We screen all best-of winners (including genre winners) during the festival.

Canada Shorts will screen all 'Premier Award' winners including 'Best Of' winners.

Canada Shorts screens at The Cinematheque theatre, 1131 Howe Street, Vancouver, British Columbia.

If your short is selected for exhibition we will inform you. We will also send you an exhibition file request email. You will need to provide an HD (1920 x 1080) exhibition file.

Canada Shorts is an IMDB qualifying festival.

Canada Shorts communicates to entrants via FilmFreeway notifications. Please make certain the email address in your entry form is correct. Please also add to your Safe Senders list on your email platform.

Some email systems place FilmFreeway communications in junk/spam folders so we recommend you check those folders regularly and mark FilmFreeway comms as safe.

==> For our complete FAQ, Eligibility requirements, Rules & Terms please visit our website:

We work hard to keep our submission fees as low as possible – consequently we cannot provide fee waivers.

• The depiction of animal abuse whether real or implied is not acceptable and will lead to automatic disqualification and loss of entry fee.
• Canada Shorts has no festival premiere eligibility requirements. Shorts that have screened at other festivals are still eligible.
• Canada Shorts has no public or internet broadcast eligibility requirements. If your short has screened on Vimeo etc, it is still eligible.
• Changes to submitted films will only be accepted if accompanied by a new submission fee.
• The decision of the selection committee is final.
• Stills of selected films may also be shown on the Festival website and publicity/promo material including press releases, festival brochures and other materials.
• All entry fees are non-refundable.
• Entrants are responsible for securing all rights and permissions from copyright and other holders relating to their short.
• Canada Shorts reserves the right to update or modify these terms and policies without prior notice.

• After selection, notification letters will be sent electronically.
• Canada Shorts does not accept trailers or rough assemblies but will accept work-in-progress cuts (picture lock with temp sound, color, etc.). Please be aware Canada Shorts will not view multiple updates/versions of your film for programming consideration.

• Custom-made personalized trophies will be presented to winners of Grand Prize, Best Canadian Short, Best International Short, Best Director, Best Writer (maximum one per entry)

Overall Rating
  • Irene Salvador

    Dear Members of the Canada Shorts-Canadian & International Short Film Festival,
    It is hard to express my happiness and my gratitude !!!
    You have been so professional and kind to our Team. I am specially touched because I put my heart into my short Tawny Eyes and the whole Team had worked with all their good energy.
    Thank you so much for your Award !!! I will always remember your beautiful festival and I hope we will continue our collaboration.

    My Best Regards,

    Irene Salvador.

    March 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Irene. The industry needs more talented female writer/director creative voices like yourself. The selection committee very much enjoyed 'Tawny Eyes' and its emotive storyline. We wish you continued festival success.

  • Mark Petering

    Great staff and featured official listing of awards with names. Excellent festival.

    January 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Mark. Thank you for submitting 'Five Walks' to Canada Shorts. We wish you continued festival success!

  • It was a great pleasure to obtain an award from Canada Shorts - Canadian & International Short Film Fest. this is one of amazing experiences I have gained so far when I started Film career.
    I'm from Rwanda ))

    January 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Fisca. Mugisha (Blessing) tells a powerful story about being deaf. The selection committee praised your film. Thank you for submitting to Canada Shorts. We wish you continued festival success with 'Mugisha'.

  • He Murdered Sleep Film

    Thank you, Canada Shorts! Thrilled to have been been part of your festival.

    January 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you! 'He Murdered Sleep' was a very deserving Best Thriller/Horror, Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy and Best Cinematography winner. The selection committee were deeply impressed by your work. Our audience very much enjoyed the film. Thank you for submitting to Canada Shorts. We wish you much festival success.

  • Thank you so much for having Red String of Fate apart of your festival. We were thrilled to see we made the finalist cut. We will definitely submit again with our next project. Have a Happy New Year!

    January 2022
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you. We had an incredibly competitive field this year. 'Red String of Fate' was rated very highly by our selection committee. It was a very deserving Finalist award winner, and was in close contention for the Best Sci-Fi prize. The industry needs more talented female writer/director creative voices like yourself. We wish you continued festival success.