Welcome to the Portland Short Fest, a live theater festival offering awards in a variety of categories while still keeping your submission prices low! As filmmakers ourselves, we know and appreciate how quickly money goes when you're making a film, so at our festival it will always only be $20 to enter your film by the deadline! ($18 for early bird) $20, and your'e in! We offer live theater screenings and several awards in a variety of categories to help recognize filmmakers in all genres from around the globe.

We are currently accepting short films from 30 seconds on up to 60 minutes. We also accept web-series!

Our festival runs twice a year, with live screenings in January and July, with special events and promotions throughout the year.

At this time, we are only accepting online submissions. Only select winners will receive a live screening - receiving an 'official selection' means you have advanced in competition but will not screen live if your film does not win an award.

We offer awards in a variety of categories, with award certificates available for winners in the continental US, and downloads available for non-US residents.

Categories include:
Best Film
Best Director
Best Actor/Actress
Best Story
Best Cinematography
Best Editing
Best FX
Best Sound Design

We reserve the right to omit a particular award if we didn't receive enough entries in that category or if none of the submissions meet our judging standards. We reserve the right to give out additional specialty awards if a particular film, actor, etc., warrants it.

Official selection, and winner laurels, in JPG format, will be sent to all nominees and winners upon announcement.

The following rules apply to all entrants, films, and submissions.
All movies and/or screenplays must meet the following requirements to take part in this competition. The entrant/submitter/moviemaker/controlling company accepts all of the rules and terms in full by sending in a movie for consideration.

By submitting you acknowledge and agree to the following:

Submitter has full legal right to submit the film and/or screenplay, and is duly authorized to do so.

The film and/or screenplay is not subject to any litigation, nor is it currently under threat of litigation.

Submitter agrees to hold harmless Portland Short Fest and all associates known and unknown, owners, management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, and etc. harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from my entry.

Submitter certifies that they have the full legal right and use to any images, music, score, sound or recordings, writings, or documents, of any type used in the submission.

Submitter gives permission for Portland Short Fest to use stills, titles, copy, and/or information from the film for promotional purposes.

Submitter authorizes Portland Short Fest to hold an exhibition screening of the short film film if they win.

Anyone from any country can participate in this competition but parental consent must be given to the entrant if under 18 years of age. Movies of any length are allowed to enter the competition, but all dialogue must either be spoken in English or the movie must have English subtitles.

The entrant can submit as many entries as they want. With or without notice, a category may be removed from consideration at any time if there are not enough submissions or submissions do not meet judging standards. In this event films will be held over and combined with entrants from the next scheduled session.

There is no production date requirement, nor premiere status rule. Old and new movies are equally welcome. Winning films will be offered an optional exhibition screening.

Previously entered movies can be re-submitted if they meet the following criteria. 1- they did not win any awards during previous Portland Short Fest sessions, and 2- they were drastically changed since their most recent submission.

Please double check the exact length of your movie/file, including opening credits, closing credits, bumpers, etc. and submit into the appropriate category or else your movie may be disqualified if improperly submitted. Submission fees will not be returned in such cases.

The submitter hereby certifies that they possess the right(s) and all of the proper clearances to submit the movie, including, but not limited to image rights, talent releases, soundtrack and/or source music releases; and assumes all responsibility for their material. Portland Short Fest accepts no responsibility, financial or otherwise, for any movie submitted to the festival. All entries to the Portland Short Fest are adjudicated by other moviemaker(s) who may have multiple projects in the works, and may have many movie ideas. By sending in an entry, the submitter recognizes that each and every judge may have similar ideas and absolves the Portland Short Fest, and any/all associates known and unknown from any liability associated with his/her/their participation in this competition.

Portland Short Fest only accepts online screeners. Please submit screeners via Ensure your contact information is up-to-date. Keep in mind that prices, discounts, etc., may vary between submission platforms, and the Portland Short Fest may have special promotions on social media for fans and followers.

Portland Short Fest does not offer refunds.

If nominated, filmmakers may be required to submit additional material, up to and including, but not limited to, headshots, technical details of the film, and/or any marketing materials, posters, etc.

The submitter hereby grants Portland Short Fest, its associates both known and unknown, the right to use the submitted film's trailer, or promotional materials, for promotional purposes, in perpetuity, without any further consideration, and accepts sole responsibility for the use of all materials.

Submitter understands and agrees that all submissions by the judges are final and non-contestable.

All awards are personable and non-transferrable.

Nominees and winners will be posted on the Portland Short Fest website, where they will stay listed for a time up to one year in length.

Submitter understand and agrees that Portland Short Fest reserves the right to add, modify, or discard rules and terms, if needed, as needed, at any time, at its sole discretion, with or without notification. It further reserves the right to make decisions to address anomalies and/or unforeseen circumstances, including, but not limited to removing a movie from consideration, at its sole discretion, without providing an explanation.

Any dispute arising as a result of submission to the Portland Short Fest will have a recourse limited to the lesser of 1) the submission fee paid, or 2) the cost of correcting the issue.

By submitting an entry to the Portland Short Fest, the entrant(s)/ submitter(s)/moviemaker(s)/controlling company accept(s) all of the rules and terms herein, in their entirety, without modification. Entrant/submitter/moviemaker further acknowledges that remediation of any sort will be limited to a refund of their submission fees. If entrant/submitter/moviemaker does not agree with these terms, do not submit your entry. By submitting, entrant/submitter/filmmaker indicates that they have read, understand, agree with, and will comply will all of the Rules and Terms stated in items above.

Overall Rating
  • Wade Rupp

    My little film continues to get selected to festivals, and Portland Short Fest was the second one to do so which gave me a lot of encouragement and confidence. I'm new at all this. I am so thankful for such a great festival.

    November 2020
  • I am honored to have been selected for this festival. I sincerely hope to be able to triumph with my trailer in this prestigious festival.
    They have been good at handling the Covid emergency and I wholeheartedly hope that things are better for them and all of us.

    August 2020
  • Aycil Yeltan

    This festival is going to go far. I was really happy to be a part of it. The communication was very solid. I could not join in person but my award was sent to me and it is really chic. I would like to thank Jason Hawkins for his hard work putting together this awesome festival.

    March 2020
    Response from festival:

    Thank you! We're having a lot of fun, seeing some amazing films, and working on growing even bigger!

  • What a courteous, engaging and communicative group. It is an honor and pleasure to be selected and involved with Portland Short Fest.

    January 2020
    Response from festival:

    Thank you! We screened your film at tonight's event, it got some good laughs and people seemed to really enjoy it!