The 14th Annual San Francisco International Festival of Short Films (SF Shorts) celebrates more than a decade of diverse short film programming – seeking to push forward dynamic films that fill audiences with thought-provoking wonder. SF Shorts explores a wide mix of genres and cultures without circumscribing them into niches. Fueled by enthusiastic audiences and a focus on presenting compelling stories, SF Shorts programs exclusively from its pool of submitted entries. Unlike most festivals, all SF Shorts entries are individually screened by the festival director responsible for programming.

We accept all types of short films, which for us includes music videos. Our festival prides itself on its range. It's our mission to present the widest possible scope of content. Go to our website to view the range of films programmed last year.

SF Shorts does not use screeners. A director of the festival will watch every single entry, so you can be assured that your film is fully considered. All films selected for the festival are automatically eligible for a variety of honors and prizes awarded by the festival and the audience.

At the festival, many of our visiting filmmakers remark how nice it is to have their film screened before a real audience and not just festival staff and colleagues. As filmmakers ourselves, we know the amount of work that goes into projects, so after each screening, we lead the audience in a meaningful discussion about your process.

In addition to cash prizes/awards, SF Shorts offers significant travel stipends to filmmakers attending the festival. The result is a festival where filmmakers, films, and audience collide into a cinematic celebration that includes eight different honors presented by judges, festival staff, and audience members.

At SF Shorts, wildly diverse films are mixed together to spark programs that electrify audiences. SF Weekly has praised SF Shorts for its programs of "concentrated inspiration, breathtaking craft, and unabashed entertainment value." Submit your short today, and find out what this unique celebration has to offer in San Francisco!

Visit our website at to read filmmaker testimonials and to see the diversity of films from the very successful 2017 season.

Grand Jury Prize
Cash Award Value: 500 U.S. Dollar

Jury Prize (#1)

Jury Prize (#2)

Audience Choice Award
Cash Award Value: 500 U.S. Dollar

Filmmaker Travel Grants
For those filmmakers traveling to the festival from out of the state, we will divide a budget of cash for stipends.
Cash Award Value: 3,000 U.S. Dollar

Approximately August 20, 2018

Shorts: maximum 30 minutes

All genres accepted including Narrative, Documentary, Animation, Experimental, Music Video

No requirement for completed by date

Projects may originate from anywhere in the world

No premiere requirement

Projects may have distribution


For entry, preview submissions may be sent to us on DVD (NTSC preferred) or through the Secure Online Screening process available through Filmfreeway. For Online Screeners, please ensure that your film plays fully.

Festival exhibition is by digital video projection only. All submission media should be clearly marked with title, total running time and email address.

DO NOT mail or ship your entry by any method that requires a signature on our end.

All entrants will be notified of selection by August 20th, 2018, approximately.

Please ensure if you are submitting a film that contains copyrighted material by anyone other than yourself, that you have obtained festival clearance for that material used. By entering your work, you agree to this and all the responsibilities involved.

Films screened in the festival should be presented in English. For all dialogues presented in other languages, the festival will accept subtitling and/or dubbing.

All films selected for the festival are automatically entered into competition for a variety of honors and prizes awarded by the festival organizers and audience.

Film Length up to 30 minutes.