Kerry Film Festival (KFF) is an internationally recognised short film festival and Kerry's largest film festival which takes place in Killarney, Co. Kerry from 17th - 21st October 2018.

Over the past 18 years KFF has become a vital element of Kerry’s cultural landscape offering a unique film experience to the local community as well as creating a ‘must attend’ cultural tourism event for visitors to the county.

KFF is renowned for celebrating the work of emerging filmmaking talent through a well established short film competition that has been supported and endorsed by luminaries from the world of film such as Cillian Murphy, director Paul Greengrass, Jeremy Irons, Liam Neeson, and Gabriel Byrne.

The introduction of the Short Film - T.A.L.K sessions cemented the festival as an important event on the film festival schedule. Partnerships with Screen Training Ireland, IFTA and Film Network Ireland encouraged film makers to network with industry partners and support the short film art form.

In 2017 the festival introduced submissions for feature film to the Kerry Film Festival for the first time due to overwhelming demand. For 2018 the festival will introduce a programme for advertising and also music videos.

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Kerry Film Festival, which takes place from 17th to 21st October, is now inviting entries for its short film competition in the following categories:


KFF has previously featured successful shorts such as the Oscar® short-listed “Head over Heels” in 2012 and the 2014 Oscar® winner “Mr Hublot” and 2016 Oscar® winner "STUTTERER". Three short films that screened at KFF in 2017 are nominated for the IFTA awards in 2018. 'The Silent Child' which screened at KFF17 won the short narrative film category at the 2018 Oscar® ceremony.

Emerging filmmakers are at the core of the Kerry Film Festival programme, with the short film competition geared towards showcasing their work and bringing it to a wider audience both at home and throughout a growing network of partner festivals across the globe.

Filmmakers will have the chance for their work to be seen by a prestigious panel of adjudicators which has in recent years included Academy Award Nominated Fodhla Cronin O'Reilly, Academy Award winner Benjamin Cleary, Sundance Grand Jury prize winner, Jim Cummings, Directors Lenny Abrahamson and Paul Greengrass and Producer Finola Dwyer.

There will also be a BEST FEATURE FILM AWARD

We welcome feature film submissions and It is important to note that programme slots for feature films are extremely limited.

FINAL deadline for submissions is 20th July 2018 for all categories.

Each submission must be accompanied by a HIGH RES STILL IMAGE (not a poster image) and a 15 WORD SYNOPSIS. Please include a cover note if possible. We are keen to know more about you and your film.

Please submit to ONE category only per film. If you wish us to note an additional category for your film, please use the cover note section to tell us!

For the Best of Kerry programme we would like to know about the Kerry link to your film. What is your link to the Kingdom? Was your film made in Kerry. Submit to the Kerry Connection category.

Please let us know if your film has an original score. Add a note in the cover letter. We have an award for Best Original Score!

Students, please submit to the student category for all genres of film.

KFF only accepts short films of NO LONGER than 20 minutes. (Including titles & credits)
Feature Films must be 60 minutes or over.

Films, not in the English language must have subtitles.

Only films completed after July 2017 will be accepted for KFF 2018.

The selection and scheduling of all films screened at KFF 2018 is entirely at the discretion of the Festival Director and the Judging Panel.

Due to the large amount of submissions received KFF cannot enter into any discussion regarding films that are not selected for the 2018 edition of the festival. In 2018, the festival is unable to send personal emails regarding films that are not selected and notification regarding the status of selection will be made via FilmFreeway notification.

Selected films will be announced on the KFF website and in the media.

Short Film Screening Files: (Once Selected)

If selected the festival will request a ProRes 422 or ProRes LT Quicktime file with the following specifications only:

Frame size - 1920 x 1080
Frame rate - 24fps or 25fps

Audio 48khz 24bit stereo or 5.1


A H.264 file with the following specifications:
Frame size - 1920 x 1080
Frame rate - 24fps or 25fps
Bit rate - 12000kbps to 35000kbps.

Audio 48khz 24bit stereo

If selected, any web links used to transfer accepted formats should remain active until we have confirmed that we have downloaded and tested the film. Alternative versions will be required where it is evident that the technical requirements are not being met.

Please watch the file of your film IN FULL before sending to us. Our DCP technician will not be able to check your file for errors. Failure to adhere to the technical requirements may result in films not being screened.

Screening format for FEATURE FILMS will be DCP only and must be provided by the APPLICANT if selected.

KFF will liaise with the filmmaker regarding screening formats after final decisions have been taken. Please check the email you submit your film with regularly. This is the method we will use to contact you. If there is no response to our emails, KFF reserve the right to withdraw selection for KFF18.

Images and press packs will be requested upon selection. These will be used for promotional purposes not limited to press, online media, television, radio and any other media platform.

Television and Internet broadcasting: Taking part in KFF implies allowing broadcasting on Irish and foreign televisions and on the Internet (extracts limited to and not exceeding 1 min) for the purpose of promoting the festival.


KFF does not pay screening fees.

We request that applicants submit to Kerry Film Festival only through the FilmFreeway portal. We do not accept DVD's, online links by email etc. The festival has a small seasonal staff and we are not in a position to accept submissions in any other way. This allows our judging panel to view and select films in a fair manner.

All the films are watched by the panel and the judges make the final decision. There is no audience award at Kerry Film Festival.

Entering your film to KFF you must have the authority and licence for any music soundtrack on/in your film. You and/or the artists who own the music and/or their representatives waive rights to claim royalties from KFF for screening selected films.

On submitting to the festival the applicant understands that he/she has legal right to submit the film including ensuring all clearances have been obtained. By submitting to the festival the applicant agrees to the rules and terms.

Overall Rating
  • Amy-Joyce Hastings

    I have attended the Kerry Film Festival for 2 consecutive years. Kerry is the friendliest county in Ireland, as well as one of the most beautiful, and so goes their festival in Killarney. Maeve the festival director is a wonderful host, as are all her staff. Communication is detailed and clear. The screening facilities are technically excellent, the programming is varied and interesting and there are great panels and networking evenings for visiting filmmakers.

    February 2018
  • Roisin Kearney

    I can't say enough about Kerry Film Festival, they are so helpful and in such a beautiful setting. My second time there this year and hope to be there again next year.

    January 2018
  • THIS FESTIVAL IS AMAZING! We cannot recommend it enough, welcoming, warm, and a superb time had by all. The team behind Maeve McGrath make sure that the festival goes off with a bang and everyone knows everyone else. With a variety of strong programming and at extremely reasonable prices, it's a dead cert to submit. And even if you don't get selected you should go to see how a festival should be run!

    December 2017
  • Great festival. They make it easy to meet filmmakers, producers and distributors, and the quality of films is really high!

    December 2017
  • JP O'Brien

    Terrific Festival in a stunning location, the cinema itself is in the heart of Killarney. Maeve and her team go out of their way to make you feel welcome. Great Irish films on display and strong International selections too. Networking events across the weekend, there is a focus on the Kerry region, overall, I'd certainly recommend KFF to filmmakers.

    November 2017