THE FESTIVAL
The Gold Coast Film Festival brings diverse Australian and International films, filmmakers and film events to the Gold Coast.

The 19th annual Gold Coast Film Festival will run from 14-25 April, 2021 bringing 100+ films, panels, parties and events across the Gold Coast. For the first time, GCFF's 2021 program will be offering a hybrid program, with both in-person and online screenings and events taking place with a selection of feature films and industry panels and events available online.

As the city’s flagship film event, the Gold Coast Film Festival promotes the Gold Coast as a major Australian filmmaking destination, helps develop the filmmakers and crew working in the local industry and is committed to supporting the continued economic benefit and job creation by the screen industry in the region.

In 2017, we became an AACTA-Award qualifying film festival for feature films.

Our location is one with a heritage of filmmaking, with international filmmaking introduced on the Gold Coast in the late 1980’s. Fast-forward to 2019 and major international films Elvis, Dora, Unbroken, Pirates of the Caribbean, Thor: Ragnarok and Aquaman have chosen the Gold Coast’s incredible locations and highly competent crew to shoot their multi-million dollar films.

The 2019 Gold Coast Film Festival ran across 12 days in April with over 150 films and film related events in 14 different Gold Coast locations, entertaining and inspiring more than 19,000 people. Sadly, the 2020 Festival, due to be the biggest and best festival yet, was cancelled due to COVID-19 with a selection of key events pivoting online.

The Gold Coast Film Festival is supported by the Queensland Government through Screen Queensland and Tourism and Events Queensland. The Gold Coast Film Festival is supported by the City of Gold Coast.

SIPFEST SHORT FILM FESTIVAL
SIPFest, otherwise known as the Shorts in Paradise Festival, is the annual short film festival with $5000 in cash prizes and an unbeatable outdoor cinema location!

The crowd will enjoy 14 finalist short films from Australia and around the world with filmmakers and screen industry invited from across Australia to join in an unforgettable night.

From drama to comedy (and everything in between) short films of a (guide) classification 'M' or below will be judged by a panel of industry experts and awarded $5,000 in prizes. The audience can also cast their vote on the night for the People’s Choice Award with a $1,000 cash prize.

If you have a short film under 15 minutes produced in the last two years, enter it into SIPFEST 2021 - part of the Gold Coast Film Festival.

SIPFest update: SIPFest short film competition will have a new home in 2021. We’ve loved bringing SIPFest to the sands of Surfers Paradise, and look forward to delivering new beach screenings in the future. We’ll still be bringing you the best selection of short films from Australia and around the world this April, but from a brand-new Gold Coast location. The new location will be announced soon.

>>>> WHY SUBMIT TO GOLD COAST FILM FESTIVAL? <<<<

* AACTA-Award Qualifying Film Festival for Features
* We look after indie filmmakers and will try wherever possible to fly selected cast/crew in and accommodate you (pending border restrictions)
* Dedicated award/prize categories for Australian features, shorts, scripts and web series
* You can take part in professional development through relevant, useful and engaging Q&As, panels and workshops - in 2019, we offered industry events with more than 150 guest speakers, panellists or moderators
* Opportunities to make valuable connections with Queensland and national industry guests
* SIPFEST offers some great cash prizes - $5000 for short filmmakers
* Blackmagic Design Best Australian Indie Film Award specifically for low-budget and independent features
* PKF Best Australian Feature Film open to all Australian features
* Queensland Screenwriting Award with $5,000 cash awarded to 1st place and the opportunity to participate in a live script read at the 2021 Gold Coast Film Festival and $500 cash for 2nd and 3rd place – with thanks to The Heaton Group.
* $500 cash prize for the Best Australian Webseries
* Free entry for Gold Coast filmmakers (find out more at www.gcfilmfestival.com/submissions)

We highly encourage entries from independent filmmakers and films with creative leads from under-represented backgrounds. We deliver a program that supports equality with a commitment to having 50% women speakers across the festival, all films rated by the Bechdel Test and Australia’s first film festival childcare offering.

If you would like to speak to any filmmakers who have screened at GCFF in the past, please let us know - we'd be happy to put you in touch.

We accept feature films, short films and web series, from Australia and around the world, and feature film scripts from Queensland-based writers.

^^^FEATURE FILMS^^^
We are an AACTA-Award qualifying film festival for feature films.

In 2021, we’ll be awarding the PKF Best Australian Film, open to all Australian features, and the Blackmagic Design Best Australian Indie Film Award, open to independent Australian features.

For international filmmakers, all "Official Selection" films will be paid a screening fee.

***SHORT FILMS***
$5,000 up for grabs for short filmmakers across 7 categories:
• Best Australian Film - $1,500
• People’s Choice - $1,000
• Runner-Up Best Film - $500
• Best Screenplay - $500
• Best International Film - $500
• Best Film by a Gold Coast Resident - $500
• Best Actor - $500

SIPFest update: SIPFest short film competition will have a new home in 2021. We’ve loved bringing SIPFest to the sands of Surfers Paradise, and look forward to delivering new beach screenings in the future. We’ll still be bringing you the best selection of short films from Australia and around the world this April, but from a brand-new Gold Coast location. The new location will be announced soon.

### WEB SERIES ###
Best Australian Web Series - $500 cash prize
Best International Web Series

*** QUEENSLAND FEATURE FILM SCRIPTS***
Queensland Screenwriting Award - 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize
1st place:
• $5,000 cash with thanks to The Heaton Group
• VIP Industry Package for Pitch In Paradise, GCFF’s 2-day pitching market
• The opportunity to participate in a live script read of their winning script performed by local actors during the 2021 Gold Coast Film Festival.

2nd & 3rd place: $500 cash prize thanks to The Heaton Group

SHORT FILM RULES:
• We accept Australian and International short films up to a maximum 15 minutes in length, including credits.
• Short films must have been completed within the last 2 years (after 1 January 2019)
• Short films are screened open-air so we reserve the right to bleep any swear words as we see necessary
• All non-English language series must be dubbed or subtitled in English. If selected, the screening version must also be dubbed or subtitled.

FEATURE AND SHORT FILM CONDITIONS OF ENTRY:

Gold Coast Film Festival (including SIPFEST) will take place 14-25 April 2021. By submitting your film (Film) to Gold Coast Film Festival (Festival), which is organized by Gold Coast Film Fantastic Ltd (A.C.N. 098 091 260) (GCFF), you (Filmmaker) agree to the following:

1. All the information provided either through the online entry form or through email correspondence with GCFF is true and accurate.
2. You either own the rights to, or have permission to use, the footage, sound, music, images and all other contributions that are part of the Film to the extent necessary to submit the Film to the Festival and, if accepted, screen the Film at the Festival. Please note: if you have any doubts about any of the rights in the Film, you must notify the Festival at the time of submission.
3. The film must be completed in the past two years with completion date after 1 January 2019.

If your film is selected to screen as part of Gold Coast Film Festival:
1. You grant GCFF a royalty-free, non-exclusive, Australian license to screen the Film between 14-25 April 2021.
2. You agree to provide GCFF with a downloadable version of the short Film or DCP of the feature Film by no later than 5 March 2021.
3. GCFF will prepare professional session compiles at its own cost for screening at all its venues. You grant GCFF all necessary rights to copy and otherwise reproduce the Film for the purpose of making such compiles and otherwise screening the Film and promoting the Festival and GCFF.
4. You must notify GCFF immediately if any of the rights in the Film become disputed or a claim is made against you in relation to the Film.
5. You must indemnify GCFF and the Festival from all claims made against GCFF or the Festival arising from or in connection with the submission of the Film, or any infringement of any intellectual property in connection with the screening of the Film as part of the Festival.
6. You grant GCFF and the Festival a royalty-free, non-exclusive Australian license to use film excerpts, film stills, press kits and other promotional materials from the Film for publicity and promotional purposes in relation to the Festival, including on its website.

WEB SERIES RULES
• We accept all new web series or any series produced from 1 January 2019 to present.
• Qualifying web series must have at least two completed episodes at the time of submitting.
• Episodes cannot exceed 20 minutes in duration. Series with episodes exceeding 20 minutes are welcome to submit a shortened version(s) of an episode(s) for judging purposes
• Two completed episodes of the series must be submitted for consideration. If selected, the submitter may then choose episode(s) for screening as per screening guidelines below.
• All non-English language series must be dubbed or subtitled in English. If selected, the screening version must also be dubbed or subtitled.
• If episodes are private or not publicly available, submitter must provide link and password for Gold Coast Film Festival. Please provide a link, Vimeo link, Youtube playlist or Dropbox link for each episode being submitted - must submit 2 episodes.
• Work-in-progress web series will not be accepted.
• Each season of a web series is eligible for separate submissions but must be submitted as separate entries.
• By submitting to Gold Coast Film Festival, the submitter automatically grants GCFF a non-exclusive, royalty-free Australian license to use their marketing materials for PR and Marketing of the festival.
• Entrants may submit an unlimited number of series, however each series requires an individual submission and payment.
• All submissions must remain available online in the same format as submitted for the duration of the judging process and until the end of the Gold Coast Film Festival (April 25th 2021).

Conditions for screening of ‘Official Selection’ web series at the Gold Coast Film Festival:

The Gold Coast Film Festival selection jury will select 3 series as finalists. The finalists will screen at the 2021 Gold Coast Film Festival as ‘Official Selection’. The winners for each category will be announced at the 2021 Gold Coast Film Festival.
• Screening of one episode is guaranteed, and a second episode will be screened if total run time of both episodes is less than 20 minutes.
• In addition to the episode(s) for screening, the selected series is to submit:
o Minimum 3 high res press images for the series (.jpeg format)
o The official trailer/teaser of the submitted web series (max. 2 minutes)
o A promotional poster of the web series
• At the time of notification of ‘Official Selection’, the web series must notify the Gold Coast Film Festival of the exact total run time of the episode(s) which will be screened – either one episodes or two if total run time is under 20 minutes
• Web series for screening at the Gold Coast Film Festival must be delivered to GCFF as a DCP drive or Blu-Ray DVD by March 5, 2021 at the latest. Series received after this date may not be allowed to screen during the Festival

WEBSERIES CONDITIONS OF ENTRY:

By submitting your webseries (Film) to Gold Coast Film Festival (Festival), which is organized by Gold Coast Film Fantastic Ltd (A.C.N. 098 091 260) (GCFF), you (Filmmaker) agree to the following
1. All the information provided either through the online entry form or through email correspondence with GCFF is true and accurate.
2. You either own the rights to, or have permission to use, the footage, sound, music, images and all other contributions that are part of the Film to the extent necessary to submit the Film to the Festival and, if accepted, screen the Film at the Festival. Please note: if you have any doubts about any of the rights in the Film, you must notify the Festival at the time of submission.
3. You must indemnify GCFF and the Festival from all claims made against GCFF or the Festival arising from or in connection with the submission of the Film, or any infringement of any intellectual property in connection with the screening of the Film as part of the Festival.

QUEENSLAND FEATURE FILM SCRIPT RULES
• All scripts must be submitted in English.
• Length of script submitted must be at least 70 pages. It is recommended it is below 120 pages, however there is no maximum page number that will be accepted.
• Applicants must also submit a synopsis paragraph
• Submitters must be living and based in Queensland at time of submission.
• Entrants may submit more than one script but each script must be submitted as a separate submission and payment.
• All scripts must be submitted in PDF format and formatted in industry standard.
• All scripts submitted must be applicant’s own original work and applicant must have all rights to submit script.
• Entrants agree, that if chosen as the winner, they will take part in a live script read of their entry script in front of an audience at the Gold Coast Film Festival in April 2021. The festival will work with the screenwriter to source local actors for the read.
• Prize money will be awarded to the winner at the Gold Coast Film Festival 2021. In the event the in-person awards ceremony is cancelled or rearranged due to Government regulations, the awards ceremony will take place online and winners will be awarded prize money.
• Entry fees are non-refundable.
• Submissions must be made online. No mailed or emailed entries are accepted.
• No revisions will be accepted after the screenplay has been submitted.
• Judging: Scripts will be judged on several different criteria (including, but not limited to, structure, premise, and entertainment value). Awards, selections, and decisions are final.
• Co-Authors: If a screenplay has more than one author, it is up to the authors to decide how many authors to list on the application and who will be the primary contact e-mail. Awards are given per entry, not per author and awarded author must be a Queensland resident.

GOLD COAST ENTRY FEE WAIVER:
In 2021, we're waiving submission fees for Gold Coast filmmakers across all submission categories. To receive your free entry code, visit www.gcfilmfestival.com/submissions.
Terms and conditions:
- Maximum 10 entries per person using the fee waiver code
- Submitter must be Gold Coast-based and a Gold Coast address must be entered when submitting
- If shortlisted as a finalist or winner, the person who submits the project will be acknowledged as the finalist - no transfers allowed.
- Gold Coast Film Festival reserves the right to cancel or refuse a submission if the fee waiver code is used but the submitter and/or submitter's address is not Gold Coast-based
- Fee waiver is only available for future submissions, cannot be applied to already submitted entries

In the event that the Gold Coast Film Festival's in-person events are cancelled, restricted or rearranged due to COVID-19 or any other Government regulations, GCFF will award all prize money to winners either during a digital awards ceremony or otherwise. Submission fees will not be refunded in the case of restrictions to the Festival.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Jenna Robertson

    It was a lovely experience to be part of the 2021 GCFF

    June 2021
  • D.C. Fairhurst

    I unfortunately wasn't able to be there - But the communication from the festival was superb and all my friends who attended the screening had a great night. Thanks for including our short!

    May 2021
  • Enzo Tedeschi

    I've been lucky to be a part of GCFF's screening program more than once, and each time it is a wonderful experience. Thanks, and keep up the good work!

    May 2021
  • Maxime Chefdeville

    Good communication, good vibes !
    Thank you Gold coast

    May 2021
  • TJ Power

    Well pivoted in the COVID-19 era. The SIPFEST category was held online & run impressively with all the hurdles thrown at them. They kept a wonderful spirit, communicated clearly & treated their filmmakers & audience with class!

    May 2020