We 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.

All films that receive an award will receive both an award laurel and an award certificate that you can quote on IMDB, your film's website etc.

We screen best-of winners, and genre winners during the festival.

Canada Shorts is an IMDB qualified festival.

2021 Awards and placings

2020-2015 Awards and placings
https://canadashorts.com --> 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 100+ short films per season. That is considerably more than we could possibly screen. What we can and do screen are all 'Premier' Award winners including 'Best Of' winners.

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

Canada Shorts screens in Vancouver, British Columbia. Theater details will be published closer to the festival date.

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 admin@canadashorts.com 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
  • We're honored to be an Award Winner! A filmmaker friendly fest!
    Much love and thank you! MarriageFit cast & crew

    February 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Rob. We loved the blend of comedy, emotion and sci-fi in 'MarriageFit'. We wish you lots of festival success. Thanks for submitting to Canada Shorts.

  • Elizabeth Dings

    Thank you for picking Chemistry Read we loved the recognition and being a part of your festival.

    February 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Elizabeth. The selection committee very much enjoyed 'Chemistry Read'. We wish you continued festival success.

  • susan osberg

    I was very happy to receive an Award of Excellence for Mining the Moon!

    January 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Susan. The selection committee very much enjoyed 'Mining the Moon' and its use of visuals, dance and music to interlink a number of powerful stories. We wish you continued festival success.

  • Courtney Deelen

    Thank you for including us again and for your kind words for our film The Last of Ian Campbell. Looking forward to submitting our next film

    January 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Courtney. Your film 'The Last of Ian Campbell' was rated very highly by our selection committee. They rated highly the direction, emotive script and strong acting performances. It was a very deserving Finalist award winner. The industry needs more talented female creative voices like yourself. We look forward to viewing you latest film. We wish you continued festival success.

  • Eddie Huband

    So glad I was a part of it

    December 2020
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Eddie. We wish you continued festival success with 'Family Ties'. Thanks for submitting to Canada Shorts.