The STARBURST International Film Festival is a celebration of genre movies; offering the best of cult, independent, horror, sci-fi, and fantasy - both classic revivals and new releases.

Get your Films Short-listed:
The STARBURST Fantasy Awards are a great way for indie shorts and features to get maximum exposure. If you have a suitable genre related short, no longer than 50 minutes in length, then you can simply enter via FilmFreeway.
Feature films should be over 60 minutes in length and not yet have had a commercial release. Premieres are preferred, but not essential.

About the Film Festival:
STARBURST MAGAZINE is the world’s longest-running magazine of cult entertainment and has built a reputation of championing independent filmmaking and arts, particularly with the monthly column INDEPENDENTS DAY in the print edition, which profiles emerging talent.

As part of the main programme, we are looking for new and exciting films from all over the world. This continues to support the magazine’s remit of embracing the strange, aiming to showcase amazing features and spectacular shorts.
We only have limited screening slots available, so will sadly be unable to accept every entry.
Unsuccessful entrants are more than welcome to attend and promote their work during the festival via networking and flyers.

At our previous festivals, we hosted such luminaries as famed James Bond director John Glen and extreme horror legend Jörg Buttgereit, actors Virginia Hey, Caroline Munro, and Martine Beswick as well as themed events on Doctor Who, Dredd, Red Dwarf, Inside No 9 - all with cast and crew in attendance - and much more.
We focus on the independent movies, although we will be screening some classics.

Our Guest of Honour for 2019 will be the legendary President of Troma Entertainment, Lloyd Kaufman!

The STARBURST International Film Festival takes place from Friday, March 15th to Saturday, March 16th, 2019 at the Landing, Media City UK ( The venue is in the prestigious Salford hub - home of the BBC and ITV as well as many other independent studios. It is not far from the heart of the city centre and within easy access to all major transport links.

All movies accepted through FilmFreeway will be considered for entry into the festival competition. This year we've teamed up with Tribal Films, who will be offering the winning feature film worldwide distribution.

Categories include:
Best Feature
Best Director
Best Performance
Best Short
Independents Day Award

For eligibility, a short is no longer than 60 minutes and a feature film must be over 60 minutes.

We will accept films completed after January 2018. If your film has already been released it is not eligible for competition, but may be considered for screening if appropriate.

You will be notified of acceptance via email.

Complete press kits for films will be requested only after acceptance.

Acceptable screening formats are: Blu-ray, MP4 file.

All entries selected into the STARBURST MEDIA CITY FESTIVAL automatically give the organisers the right to use any footage from the preview screener and/all submitted publicity photos and any other materials sent to us relating to this entry for promotional purposes, without limitations.

All discs will be returned after the screening if requested.

Overall Rating
  • Scott Lyus

    Without a doubt one of the highlights of our festival run so far. Starburst made everyone feel like a superstar and really did put on one hell of a show. A great festival and even better people. I really can not stress enough how Starburst and the MediaCity Festival have helped find my work a much wider audience then I could have ever dreamed of. I will certainly be returning in years to come.

    April 2018
  • Martin Stocks

    A great horror/sci-fi festival for horror lovers. Some great films in a nice venue. Recommended and lots of fun.

    March 2018
  • Emma Dark

    Fantastic film festival run by people who truly care about the film industry, with a special emphasis on supporting independent filmmakers. Great venue, great communication, and friendly festival staff who love the genres they support. Thank you very much for my 'Best Director' win for "Salient Minus Ten"!

    March 2018
  • Darren Langlands

    Loved attending Starburst and met so many terrific people there - some I knew. Some I met for the first time. The venue was terrific. My only gripe I guess was the two smaller screening rooms were very small and essentially the screens were just massive TVs. But it was a great festival experience with lots of chances to network.

    December 2016
  • Michael McCarthy

    Amazing festival, very truly honoured to have had my short film screened here. Amazing to have met the organisers and other film makers too. Great crowd! A fun and inspiring time!
    Looking forward to the next one!

    October 2016