The National Coalition Against Censorship is an alliance of nonprofit organizations dedicated to promoting free expression and fighting censorship in all its forms.

NCAC's Youth Free Expression Program confronts the kinds of censorship young people encounter on a daily basis through education and programs that empower young people to safely navigate and participate in contemporary culture.

Our annual Youth Free Expression Film Contest invites teenagers to create a short film on a timely free speech debate of particular relevance to young people. Past contests have explored censorship questions around video games, comedy, sex ed, and social media.

This year, in celebration of our right to political expression, NCAC’s Youth Free Expression Film Contest invites filmmakers (age 19 and under) to submit a four-minute film on PROTEST.

Illustrate the importance of political dissent to a healthy democracy and how your protest can effect social change. What forms of protest are most persuasive? What methods and strategies are most effective? Can protests ever be harmful to society? How can art forms like film inspire resistance?

Include an artist’s statement discussing the limits of protest and explaining your intended message. Also describe your creative process and technical accomplishments. All participants should be identified and their roles in the film stated.

Be thoughtful, be creative and be original.

Awards & Prizes

The top three filmmakers will receive cash prizes of $1,000, $500 and $250. The first place winner will also receive a scholarship to the New York Film Academy.

Judges will be drawn from a panel of renowned figures in film, political activism and the performing arts – previous judges have included playwright Tony Kushner (Angels in America) and film director Greg Mottola (Superbad).

Rules & Terms

Contest Rules

1. All films must be uploaded to the YFEP Film Freeway page no later than Sunday, April 15, 2018.

2. Films cannot exceed four minutes, including credits.

3. All films must address the topic: "Fight the Power: Why (Your) Protest Matters!”

4. All members of the filmmaking crew must be age 19 or younger on the day the film is submitted. Actors or interviewees in the film can be any age. If working under the direction of a teacher, mentor, or parent, that person must describe his/her role in detail.

5. Films may be submitted by teams, however please note that for each winning film, any prize money will be split evenly among the team members and scholarship opportunities may be limited.

6. All entries must be accompanied by an artist’s statement (no more than 500 words) explaining the artist’s intended message, the creative process, and technical accomplishments. All participants should be identified and their roles in the film stated.

7. Filmmakers may be of any nationality but must be living in the United States or its territories (such as Puerto Rico) at the time of submission.

8. The film must be accompanied by the tagline "This film was created for the National Coalition Against Censorship" in the credits.

9. Winning filmmakers will be asked to submit a DVD copy of their film and to sign a release form granting the National Coalition Against Censorship the rights to use, display or distribute the film in carrying out the National Coalition Against Censorship's educational mission. The National Coalition Against Censorship does not limit the original creator's use of the work in any way.

Visit ncac.org/project/film-contest for more information.