*Please read our Rules & Terms! All films must have hard-coded English subtitles.

Festival Description

SHORT FILM BREAKS is the only film festival taking place within private companies, public and non-profit organizations, in a bid to offer smart break opportunities while promoting the independent movie industry around the world.

For our 9th edition we are waiting for your films, who will compete in the following categories:

- Best International Short Film:
We're accepting short films, of any genre, under 30 minutes, from all around the world, except Romania.

- Best Romanian Short Film offered by Fortuna:
We're accepting short films of any genre, under 30 minutes, produced in Romania or all around the world but having Romanian as the single (or main) dialogue language.

- Best Feature Film
We're accepting feature films, of any genre and length, from all around the world.

- Best Animation Film:
We're accepting animation films, under 20 minutes, from all around the world.

- Best Documentary Film:
We're accepting documentary films, under 20 minutes, from all around the world.

- Best Experimental Film:
We're accepting experimental films, under 20 minutes, from all around the world.

- Best Music Video:
We're accepting music videos, under 20 minutes, from all around the world.

- Best No Dialogue Film:
We're accepting short films of any genre, under 30 minutes, with no dialogue or spoken words, from all around the world.

- Best Human Rights Short Film
We're accepting short films of any genre, under 20 minutes, created all around the world, with a theme or story related to human rights, environment & ecology, activism, citizenship and community mobilization, local development, the rights of minorities, migration, global justice, etc.

- Best Mental Health Short Film
We're accepting shorts of any genre, under 20 minutes, created all around the world, with a theme or story related to mental health.

- Best Future Cities&Villages Short Film
We're accepting shorts of any genre, under 20 minutes, with themes that are focusing on the future of cities and villages: sustainable, smart and resilient. Places for people that will improve their quality of life. Topics covered: ecology, regeneration, technology, innovation, urban mobility, architecture, etc.

- Best 1 Minute Film
We're accepting short films of any genre, having the length of under or exactly 1 minute.

We're looking forward to watching your films!
Every year we discover new gems we fall in love with!


Festival Mission

Created by filmmakers and human resources people, Short Film Breaks had its mission statement, from the start, to create a bridge between hard to distribute films (especially independent short films) and hard to reach audiences (employees and beneficiaries from our partner companies and NGOs and people living in remote villages around the world).
During our first nine years we’ve managed to screen over 600 films to audiences totaling around 50000 people, from 7 countries.

Festival History

We started in 2013, with screenings over a three months period for the 1000 Ipsos employees in Bucharest and Brasov. Our first edition also had special events and Q&A with guests from the Romanian filmmaking industry like Tudor Giurgiu, Adrian Sitaru or Tom Wilson, among others.

On our second edition we partnered with NexT IFF (www.nextfilmfestival.ro), the most important short film festival in Romania. Again, we had weekly screenings for three months and special events with guest like Florin Piersic Jr., Vivi Dragan Vasile, Ioana Flora, Dana Bunescu and Gabi Suciu.

During our third edition we continued our partnership with NexT IFF and added a new one with Alter-Native (www.madisz.ro), the most important Hungarian language film festival in Romania. That meant that again, for three months in a row, our employees watched short films during their breaks.

In 2016, we moved to the next level and added a competitive component to the festival, besides our non-competitive partnerships with Next IFF and Alter-Native, while starting a new collaboration, with Onion Films from Katmandú (http://onionfilms.com.np).
From the 1985 films submitted, we selected 7 for the Best Romanian Short Film category and 26 films for the Best International Short Film category.
We've also organized the first public event, a White Night at J'ai Bistrot Bucharest (https://bit.ly/2LaRPNS), which continued in 2017 with a second edition (https://bit.ly/2NbPend) and will continue in 2020 with the third.

2017 was the year when we first organized our amazing Kathmandu Short Film Breaks event and along with our screenings from Ipsos, we started our partnerships with Zitec and UBIS Club, both in Bucharest and Iasi (https://bit.ly/2uhWU0b).
We also opened our doors to a new range of films and filmmakers. From the total number of 2403 films received across all platforms, we accepted 118 films.
What's more, we added an online festival, i-Say Short Film Breaks, to our live screenings! The first edition was won by THE STORY OF 90 COINS, while the 2018 edition was won by TIME 2 SPLIT (http://i-say.co/iSaySFBplaylist).

2018 was a big year for us. We almost doubled the number of received submissions, to 3851, and we've increased our prizes FIVE TIMES, to $1500, while DXC Technology, Casa Pariurilor and eFortuna also joined our list of partners where we're holding weekly screenings during our festival!

In 2019 we DOUBLED the prizes, reaching a RECORD total prizes of $3000. That's ten times more than the prizes we started with, back in 2016!
And after a few years of testing, screening films in 19 communities from 7 countries (Nepal, Indonesia, Kenya, Tanzania, Romania, Senegal and Guatemala) in 2019 we launched our Patreon page (https://www.patreon.com/shortfilmbreaks) with the aim to create recurrent cinema experiences in 50 communities from 17 countries.
We’ve also organized an event for the Romanian Mental Health community, in front of a full house, in partnership with The Estuar Foundation and Mental Health Europe, at ARCUB Bucharest (http://bit.ly/estuar2019).

And the cherry on top, for the first time in history, we organized a film screening at 5,364 meters, in the Everest Base Camp, in October (http://bit.ly/SFBatEverestBaseCamp2019)! Most probably, the highest films were ever screened!


Best International Short Film - $1000
Best Romanian Short Film offered by Fortuna - $500
Audience Award - $400
Best Feature Film - $400
Best Documentary Short Film - $100
Best Animation Short Film - $100
Best Experimental Short Film - $100
Best Music Video - $100
Best No Dialogue Short Film - $100
Best Human Rights Short Film - $100
Best Mental Health Short Film - $100
Best Future Cities&Villages Short Film - $100
Best 1 Minute Film - $100

1) If selected, all films must have hard-coded English subtitles. Even the ones with dialogue in English. Our audience also contains speakers of other native languages, so English subtitles offer you the assurance they will understand your film, and them a better experience. For the judging phase, if you submit films with English dialogue, they can miss the subtitles, but we will ask for a version with hard-coded English subtitles for the festival.

2) Proudly, we have no production year / budget / premiere status or availability restrictions for your film. We do ACCEPT films that have been made available online. Our only criterions for selection are the quality of your films and their fit with our festivals values.

3) Also, entries that have been submitted to previous SFB editions, but have not been selected, ARE still eligible.

4) The same film can be submitted to more than one category. (Example: Animated film submitted to both Best International Short Film, Best Animation Film and Best 1 Minute Film)

5) Please read the time limit submission rules for each category. Films that don't respect them will not be selected.

6) By submitting your film, you agree that clips under 30 seconds from your film and all other materials related to your project may be used and/or published on our website/social media channels/event program, or for any promotional purposes which SFB deems appropriate.

7) If selected, all commercial/private property including all trademark/copyrighted materials shown or recorded in the project are the responsibility of the filmmaker. Short Film Breaks will NOT take responsibility for any infringement of copyrighted materials.

8) By submitting your film to Short Film Breaks you confirm that you have the right to distribute the film and take full responsibility of the consequences. Short Film Breaks does not own the films and will only screen and promote them, based on the acceptance of these Rules & Terms.

9) Rules are subject to change at any time with or without prior notice.

Overall Rating
  • NewBorn Short Film Agency

    We were glad to be part of Short Film Breaks program and to win an award! Their work seems to be very important and spread our short films in some very difficult to approach corners of the world! Thank you!

    February 2020
  • John Vogel

    Being part of Short Film Breaks is truly an honor. Our film, Post Graduate, has been played in parts of the world that we never thought possible including base camp of Mount Everest! Short Film Breaks is one of the most important film festivals in the world.

    January 2020
    Logo 2016
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much for your amazing review!!
    It was a pleasure showing POST GRADUATE around the world. :)

  • Michelle Yoon

    I’m so proud of being one of them. Hope I will be a part of the Last! ^^

    August 2019
    Logo 2016
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much for your nice words, Michelle! :)

  • russell mcmahon

    We were delighted to have our film, Los Mambises, selected for Short Film Breaks this year. We were not able to attend but genuinely like this different kind of festival. The outreach and larger viewing audiences this festival provides through cooperation with entities in several countries was a nice surprise bonus! We will definitely look forward to submitting future films for consideration every year. Kudos to the festival organizers.

    June 2019
    Logo 2016
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much, Russell!
    Los Mambises is a great film and we were really happy to be able to share it with our audiences!

  • Great niche film festival, organized by our friends Alin and George, who put their heart and soul into showing the films to more and more people, around the world, every year.

    February 2019
    Logo 2016
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much, guys!