The Edmonton Short Film Festival (ESFF) is dedicated to the elevation of Independent short film. The ESFF gala event showcases Alberta filmmakers with films up to 15 minutes and our Long Shorts program screens Alberta films over 15 minutes PLUS films up to 60 minutes from anywhere in the world.

We value diversity in our submissions and look forward to seeing projects created by filmmakers from any and all backgrounds. The Edmonton Short Film Festival has valued inclusion of all filmmakers and featured projects from Indigenous voices, BIPOC, LGBTQ2S+, and many more.

We feature diverse projects (newly created or “dusted off” favourites) including trailers, music videos, web series, commercials, and any genre short film. ONLY Alberta films under 15 minutes are eligible to submit to the genre categories. Films from outside of Alberta, any length up to 60 minutes, any creation date are to be submitted under the Long Shorts category.

The Edmonton Short Film Festival partners with other cultural events to showcase Alberta short films. If you are interested in submitting your film to be considered for our Community Screenings please visit our Local Heroes Film Festival FilmFreeway page to submit for $10 per film. ALL of our Community Screening events pay screening fees for films that are selected.

The audience plays a huge role in the success of the evening by choosing their favourite film. Tickets will be available through FilmFreeway for 2023. We will be offering the festival films online as well as in-person.

ALL films screened will receive a screening fee
AWARDS will be presented in genre categories
PEOPLE'S CHOICE Award voted by live audience ($250)

GALA EVENT: The Edmonton Short Film Festival welcomes ALL short film projects that are 15 minutes or less as long AS YOU (Director, Producer) ARE AN ALBERTA FILMMAKER.

Our goal is to support and promote independent film, so we will screen almost ANYTHING (we reserve the right to determine what may be considered as extreme violence, hatred, pornographic or copyrighted material).

You don’t have something new? That’s okay! Drag out something from your archives … maybe you have a fabulous film that you would love to show again. You’re working on a feature? Send us your trailer to promote the project! Of course, we also accept the “usual” – short dramatic or comedic narratives, horror, music videos, web series, documentaries and animations, etc. We would even love to see your amazing commercial!

The ESFF Adjudicators selects independently-created films based on the technical excellence and entertainment value of the film.

If your film is selected for screening you will need to provide:
A. 1920 x 1080 downloadable version of your film in a .mov format or .mp4 format
B. A high res still photo from your film or poster in 300 DPI resolution
C. Director's bio and photo and short film synopsis
D. Contact email and mailing address
E. Confirmation of who is to receive the screening fee (paid by cheque for Canadian filmmakers and by PayPal for International filmmakers)

Overall Rating
  • It was wonderful to participate in the 10th anniversary of The Edmonton Short Film Festival with our film The Final Exam. The program was wonderful and varied and ESFF is always so good at building an audience for local filmmakers. It was an honour to receive the Best Social Justice Award and the People's Choice Award. Thank you for this affirmation of our work and the story we told in our film. You lift us up!

    November 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thank you, Beth! We always enjoy sharing your work. Congratulations, again, on the People's Choice Award!

  • Clare Mullen

    Thank you ESFF. It was a great festival and I was happy to have my film Waiting On Love as part of this event.

    October 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thank you, Clare! The audience truly enjoyed it! Hope to see you in the future :)

  • Nicolás Canales Pizarro

    Muy buena experiencia en formar parte de este Festival. la comunicación muy fluida. Larga Vida a Edmonton Film Festival

    October 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thank you for your kind words!

  • Sharlene Borst

    We were pleased to present our 360/VR short film to the Edmonton Short Film Festival. It's awesome how diverse all the films are that were screened! Great interactions with staff and the gala was so much fun!

    October 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thank you! Programming is always a challenge and we're glad you appreciate all the diversity :)

  • Aaron Glanfield

    This was my first film festival circuit. The ESFF was incredible. There were great opportunities for networking, and they put on a really great show. Looking forward to entering again next time!

    My only complaint was the cinema seemed to have a lot of broken chairs, if I leaned back, I would fall back.

    October 2022
    Response from festival:

    We're so glad to have met you! The Guardian is a very cool film and we're looking forward to seeing more of your work. Thanks for letting us know about the chairs! We'll pass that feedback along to the Metro their chairs do feature a lean back that is very "soft").