The Short. Sweet. Film Fest. is a short film only film festival created by actual filmmakers. We found it challenging to showcase our own short films at film festivals who mainly program around feature films. In the age of streaming there are more opportunities than ever before to share your work, but we often asked ourselves, "do we really want to premiere our short film alongside silly kitten videos?" Even though we love kittens (who doesn’t?), we love short films more and want to present them in the professional setting they deserve.

With ten festivals under our belt, our goal for our eleventh annual film festival is to showcase films under 40 minutes to the growing art scene in the greater Cleveland area and highlight the works of student to veteran filmmakers across the country. We look for short, sweet, original, and unique films that would often soar under the radar of most festivals. Our staff are looking for the best short films locally, nationally, and internationally. So send them our way!

Students should submit to the short student film category to receive a significant discount off of the submission fee.

Our festival will take place in the Alex Theater at the Metropolitan at the 9 hotel in the heart of downtown Cleveland. Filmmakers and patrons can stay at the hotel at a discounted rate and enjoy food and beverages throughout the festival.

Films will also be included in our online festival under the discretion of the filmmaker. Patrons will have the option to watch film in person and/or online.

All selections are eligible to win best, outstanding, or honorable mention in their respective categories. These awards will be announced at the end of programming for each category of film and the top festival award will be announced on Saturday, February 26th, 2022.

The top screenplay award winners will be announced in advance and will be read live at a table reading during the film festival and recorded in advance to be streamed online. The table readings will be directed and read by Cleveland based directors and actors and the readings will be free and open to the public, so screenwriters may receive the maximum amount of exposure.

GENERAL RULES
• Productions made after January 1, 2015 may be submitted.
• Do not submit works in progress.
• Do not submit industrial or instructional works.
• All films submitted must be available in .mov format for presentation. No exceptions.
• A majority of films in digital video formats will be transferred temporarily onto a hard drive system for presentation.
• Filmmakers are STRONGLY ENCOURAGED to send films with closed captioning if selected as they will be featured in additional programming and prominently displayed within the online festival.
• All entries must be postmarked by Friday, December 31st, 2021. (Early submission discounts apply until September 30th – see fee schedule.)
• Flash or Memory sticks submitted will NOT be returned.
• Films selected for the Short. Sweet. Film Fest. will be announced no later than Friday, January 21st, 2022.
• Prints or videos for presentation must arrive no later than Tuesday, February 1st, 2022.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Short. Sweet. Film Fest, is an amazing festival! Hands down, probably one of my favorite events to submit to.

    Jim Allison - Writer / dir. of “Fools, Gold” and “Frederick Von Scholar’s How-to Series.”

    jimallisoncreative.com

    September 2021
  • Cindy Wathen-Kennedy

    What a fun festival and a delightful group to work with on this festival! I really enjoyed everything about this experience.

    July 2021
  • Rory O'Connor

    Fantastic festival. I was amazed how incredible the films were. This festival is a great draw for talent. And I was honored to have my script named Best Screenplay. It was great and convenient to watch online, but I really hope to visit one day. Thank you.

    July 2021
  • Sow the Seeds Productions

    Loved being a part of it. Organized with a lot of heart. Thanks for having us!

    April 2021
  • Eddie Shieh

    Super honored to have screened my 3rd film with SSFF again. They're great at communicating, updates and do a great job networking filmmakers. All this through the pandemic. I hope to be back to experience it in person. Thanks again and be safe!

    April 2021