The Canberra Short Film Festival showcases the best films from around Australia and around the world. It is a competition based festival with awards and sponsored prizes in a number of different categories.

The event runs for 2 exciting weeks in venues right across Canberra, the national capital. This is an intimate and fun festival where audience and film makers can connect and exchange ideas easily. Screening sessions are often enhanced with a social component including, forums, Q&A's and of course, a few parties.

We are interested in any genre, style and length up to 20 minutes (some categories have shorter length requirements) so long as it includes at least one of the following; high production values, innovation, thought provoking themes, great use of the medium and high entertainment value.

The judges want to see something beautiful, or strange, or scary, or happy. We want our audiences to be taken on a ride to be affected by your films in any BIG way possible.

CSFF includes a film maker networking event to help bring producers, directors, actors and other craft specialists together.

The event also hosts several social events both, pre/post screening, at several of our venues including; Opening Night, Saturday Night Party, Filmmaker Networking Session and of course, the Awards and Closing Night Party.

Trophies and laurels are awarded to Best Film in each category. We also present Runner Up certificates/laurels, Highly Commended certificates/laurels and/or specific craft awards such as; writing, editing, cinematography, sound, directing and acting - depending on category.


- CSFF stands for Canberra Short Film Festival.
- CSFF is operated by Australian Short Film Festivals Inc (ASFF) a not for profit, incorporated association.

- SUBMISSIONS: All submissions in to the festival must be made online through the FilmFreeway website by 11:59pm Pacific Time on 31/7/23 (or 31/08/23 for the Schools/U18s and Smith's Short Shorts categories).

- ENTERING THE RIGHT CATEGORY: Entrants to the festival must enter their film in the category or categories that they rightfully fit in to. Entrants must provide supporting evidence of age and residency if requested by CSFF to support their category entry. Please refer to the category details above for more information.

- OFFICIAL SELECTION: Once the official selection has been announced, successful applicants will be notified via email. Once official selection has been announced the decision is final and no discussions will be entered in to thereafter.

- SCREENING COPY: Required 15 days after official selection notification, if this is not received within 15 days of official selection notification CSFF has the right to cancel your screening and official selection.

- AWARDS: 'Best Film' will be announced and made out to the producer.

- EXCERPTS: By entering this festival, entrants reserve the right for CSFF to screen excerpts from their film/s for promotion of the festival for up to two years after the festival.

- RIGHTS: The producer and/or director must have the rights to all the material (e.g music) used in the film and can provide written evidence of this if requested by CSFF.

- FILM REQUIREMENTS: Films entered in to the festival must be made from June 2019 or later and run for no longer than 20 minutes including opening titles and credits (this varies for some categories). Entrants must be able to provide proof of the date of creation of the film to CSFF if requested.

- SUBTITLES: All foreign language films must be subtitled/dubbed in English to be eligible for judging.

- ENTRY FEES: Upon submitting a film, entrants will be required to pay a fee for EACH category entered before uploading their film. Entry fees cannot be refunded.

- TOURING OF FILMS: By entering the CSFF, entrants reserve the right for CSFF to screen their film without re-numeration for 18 months after the festival. This includes; online versions of CSFF and events/screenings under Australian Short Film Festivals' (our governing association) name or brand.

- JUDGING: All films will be viewed by a judging panel appointed by CSFF. All judging decisions are final and no discussions will be entered in to thereafter. Once the winner of this award has been announced, the decision is final and no discussions will be entered in to thereafter.


1/ THE PRODUCER and any AUTHORISED PERSON entering this film has obtained from each contributor the authorisations to use of image, sound, performance and the reproduction of said image, sound, performance.

2/ THE PRODUCER/S and any AUTHORISED PERSON is the owner, has authorisation or license from the owner of the copyright in the sound recordings comprising the soundtrack to the film.

3/ COMPLETION DATE: On or after July 1st 2020.

4/ LENGTH: Films for the Canberra Short Film Festival for each category must be 20 minutes or less. Time must include all titles and credits.

5/ DEADLINE: Any films submitted after the 31/07/23 deadline will not be considered for the festival.

6/ SUBTITLES: All non-English language films must be subtitled/dubbed in English.

7/ ENTRY FEES: Are not refundable.

8/ TOURING: All films entered MUST be available to tour for 18 months after the festival without remuneration.

9/ PLEASE NOTE: While we will make EVERY EFFORT to stick to screening times once printed, CSFF cannot be held accountable for changes to the schedule after schedule is announced.

10/ EXCERPTS/COPIES: By entering the Canberra Short Film Festival you agree that the festival may use your film/s for promotional and publicity purposes pertaining to the current years festival. CSFF may also make a copy of films that are selected to screen for exhibition, and may also be used for media review purposes.

Overall Rating
  • Adrian Todd Zuniga

    I wasn't able to attend in person, but it was an absolute thrill to have HOLD ME, DON'T TOUCH ME featured. Thanks to the festival for all their hard work.

    March 2023
  • Wil Allen

    The Canberra Short Film Festival is fantastic event held over two weeks in Canberra's premier city cinema. The sessions are categorised into contemporary topics. They are well run and the QnA's well organised and attended.

    December 2022
  • I am happy that my first short film, Katvoman, had its Australian Premiere at Canberra Short Film Festival. Thanks to the festival.

    December 2022
  • Palindrome Productions

    Cannot recommend this festival enough. We had a great time, a really thoughtful Q&A with film makers, and were lucky enough to watch a wide range of short films from all over the world. They’ve really gone out of their way to bring unique stories to their audiences, all while making this a very film maker-friendly experience.

    November 2022
  • I am happy and proud to have had my film screened at the Canberra Short Film Festival.

    November 2022