The Concordia Film Festival (CFF) is a student-run, non-profit festival that runs in collaboration with Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema (MHSoC) at Concordia University. Through screenings and events, we are able to display the works produced by the diverse range of filmmakers at MHSoC, and invited works from filmmakers around the globe. The MHSoC stands as the largest university-based centre for the study of film in Canada, with a body of works that are also screened to great acclaim at festivals around the world.

In addition to the programming of films from Concordia Cinema students, the CFF is proud to present five screening events, "Spotlight" is comprised of five sections during the festival open to all cinema, communications and media students at a post-secondary institution who have completed a film within the past year, while in school.

These five sections are comprised of:

Documentary: Spotlight on Documentary Films, a section devoted to all films that depict real-life people/situations/events. No mockumentary films will be accepted into this section.

Experimental: Spotlight on Experimental Films, a section devoted to those films that do things a little differently, and experiment with the form of cinema.

Lights Out: Spotlight on Midnight Movies, a section devoted to genre films. If your student film is a Horror, Thriller, Fantasy, or just plain weird, feel free to submit to this section!

Visions: Spotlight on Underrepresented Voices, a section devoted to those groups who feel that the voices of their community have been underrepresented in the mainstream.

Canadian Fiction: Spotlight on Canadian fiction films, a section devoted to discovering the best student short films that Canada has to offer! If you live in Canada feel free to submit your short to this section.

The Best Film in each category will win a cash prize.
Best Short Film - Canadian Fiction
Best Short Film - Documentary
Best Short Film - Experimental
Best Short Film - Lights Out: Spotlight on Midnight Movies
Best Short Film - Visions: Spotlight on Underrepresented Voices

Submission Guidelines:
- All films not made in English must be subtitled in English.
- The film must be made by a student at a postsecondary institution.
- The film must have been made between May 2022 to April 2024.
- The film cannot be longer than 15 minutes.

Please only submit your film to one of the five categories: Visions, Experimental, Lights Out, Documentary and Canadian Fiction.

If the film you are submitting was made in a Concordia film production class you are not eligible to submit to the Spotlight section, however, your film will be screened during the festival for Prod 1, 2 and 3, or alternatively, Animation 1, 2 and 3.

*Students who are enrolled at Concordia, in a film program, have the opportunity to submit films they worked on outside of core filmmaking classes*, provided the films fit the application criteria.

One submission per filmmaker.

Thank you for submitting.
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GENERAL FAQ’s for Open Competition

Q: What are the "Spotlight" screenings?
A: The Spotlight screenings are five separate screenings that each highlight their genre, or community, which encourage short films made outside of Concordia filmmaking classes, to be a part of the Festival. These screenings offer a variation in the regular programming, connecting our Festival with the cinema community across Canada.

Q: If I submit a film will it automatically be chosen for the screening?
A: Like the other programmed screenings, Spotlight will be juried, meaning the submission process is open to many, but the final screened films will be selected by a designated jury.

Q: If my film is selected for a Spotlight screening is it eligible for any prizes?
A: Yes, there will be a prize for the top film in each Spotlight category. The selection will be juried by a group of professionals working in the Canadian film industry.

Q: How many films will be selected for Spotlight screenings?
A: The number of films selected, depends on the time allotment for the screening, by the length of the short films that are submitted. We strive for quality over quantity but we are happy to accept films that vary in length.

Q: What kind of venue will my film be screened at?
A: The Spotlight screenings will be held in downtown Montreal, at Concordia University.

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FAQS FOR: Students in Quebec (Concordia)

Q: Can I submit a film I made while in CEGEP, another University or College?
A: Yes, as long as the film was made within the time frame (May 2020 to present), fits the criteria of the application and was directed by you, the applicant.

Q: If I am studying at Concordia and I am taking a core filmmaking class*, can I submit the film I made in that class to the Spotlight sections?
A: No you may not because films made in those classes are already eligible for entry into the other categories at the Festival.

Q: If I am studying at Concordia but I am not taking a core filmmaking class* can I still submit a film to the Spotlight sections, that I worked on in another class or outside of my studies?
A: Yes, you may submit it to the Spotlight sections, as long as the film was made within the time frame (May 2020 to present) that fits the criteria of the application and was directed by you, the applicant.

Q: If I made a film at Concordia in a core filmmaking class* or another film class in a previous school year, can I submit that film to the Spotlight sections?
A: If you made a film in a core class within the year, it is not eligible as it would have already been eligible for the categories of the 2022 Festival. However, if you made a film in another film class within the time frame (May 2020 to the present) it is eligible for competition in the Spotlight sections.

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FAQ’s FOR: Students in Canada (outside of Quebec)

Q: Can I submit a film I made in University or College?
A: Yes, you may submit a film you made in another school keeping in mind it must have been made within the past year (May 2020 to the present) and as long as the film fits the criteria of the application and was directed by you, the applicant.

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FAQ’s FOR: International Students

Q:If I made a film outside of Canada can I submit it to the Spotlight sections?
A: Yes! We are open to all students around the world!

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FAQ’s FOR: Non-Students

Q: If I am not currently a student can I still submit a film to the Spotlight sections?
A: Yes, but only if that film was made while you were a student within the past year, not that the film has to have been made at school, however.

Q: Q: Can I submit a film I made in University or College?
A: Yes, you may submit a film you made in another school keeping in mind it must have been made within the past year (May 2020 to the present) and as long as the film fits the criteria of the application and was directed by you, the applicant.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Christophe Longtin

    Great festival with an awesome selection!

    May 2024
  • It's a great festival! Good effort from the organizer team, thank you!

    May 2022
  • Kevin Rahardjo

    The communication of this festival were outstanding!! super well organized and very generous with the filmmaker.

    June 2020
  • Roxana Baloiu

    Great festival! Great team! Had a wonderful time!

    June 2020
  • Lovely festival, especially considering the move to an online platform

    June 2020