Top Shorts is the world's leading online film festival, separated into two parts:

1. MONTHLY COMPETITION - each month, our jury selects the winners through private screenings.
We also select 9 finalists, which are nominated for Film of the Month award. The 9 finalists will qualify for the annual festival (The 5th Annual Top Shorts 2019).
- IMDb - Top Shorts is an IMDb qualifying festival. This means that all winners may add the awards to their IMDb titles.
- Certificate - all monthly winners receive a free digital certificate (in JPG), ready for print.

2. ANNUAL FILM FESTIVAL - once a year, in May, we showcase the top rated short films (the 9 finalists of each month) online. *

* ONLINE - IMPORTANT NOTE: We understand that some of the films can't be available online. We won't put the full version of your film on our website if you don't want to. A TRAILER WILL DO.
If your film is a monthly finalist, it can be eligible for any award other than the Audience Choice award, which is for films that are available online during the festival. If your film can't be available online, just send us an email or mention that in the cover letter when submitting.

Top Shorts is an IMDb qualifying festival, and was recently ranked 8th Best Reviewed Festival out of over 4,000 of the world's best film festivals (and 1st from the online festivals, FilmFreeway May 2016).

We accept screenplays (up to 40 pages) and short films (up to 40 minutes length) in the following categories: Narrative, Web Series, Animation, Documentary, Indie, Inspirational, Experimental, Music Video and Micro Film.

We also have a Special Screening category for the annual film festival (for featurette and feature films, 41-120 minutes).

For any question, please contact us at

BEST OF FEST (yearly - Best of Fest and Best Director receive a free statuette)

--- CATEGORY AWARDS (monthly) ---

Best Student Film
Best Drama
Best Comedy
Best Horror
Best Thriller
Best Crime Film
Best Romantic Comedy
Best Dark Comedy
Best Mystery Film
Best Parody
Best Western
Best Fantasy Film
Best Film Noir
Best Sci-Fi
Best Animation
Best Documentary
Best Micro Film
Best Inspirational Film
Best Indie Film (budget up to $5000)
Best Web Series
Best Music Video
Best Experimental Film
Best Trailer
Best Commercial/Promotional Video
Best Screenplay
Best Original Story

--- CAST & CREW AWARDS (monthly) ---

Best Director
Best Indie Filmmaker (film's budget up to $5000)
Best First Time Director
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Actor in an Indie Film (budget up to $5000)
Best Actress in an Indie Film (budget up to $5000)
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Young Actor (13-18)
Best Young Actress (13-18)
Best Child Actor (5-12)
Best Child Actress (5-12)
Best Ensemble
Best Cinematography
Best Editing
Best Original Score
Best Sound Design
Best Visual Effects
Young Filmmaker Award (18 and under)


Audience Award - Animation
Audience Award - Documentary
Audience Award - Narrative
Audience Award - Inspirational film
Audience Award - Micro Film (up to 120 seconds)
Audience Award - Indie Film ($0-$5000 budget)
Audience Award - Web Series
Audience Award - Music Video
Audience Award - Experimental Film

--- OTHER RECOGNITIONS (yearly) ---

Special Screening (41-120 minutes)

* The Best of Fest yearly winner will receive one free Top Shorts statuette. Other winners may order a statuette for themselves and their team, for $290 including shipping.

* What we’re looking for? Story-based films, which can be in the form of narrative (fiction), music video, documentary (non-fiction), or animation.
* All films must include English subtitles (unless the spoken language is English)
* By submitting your film, take note that:
- You agree to use parts of your film (including trailer/teaser/film poster) for promotional purpose. We upload some of the winners' trailers in order to promote the films.
- You must own all the rights to the video.
- Fees are not refundable.

Top Shorts does not accept the following:
1. Amateur videos
2. Extremist or propaganda content from religious or political organizations
3. Films which are made before 2013
4. Films with a poor production standard (bad sound, lack of subtitles/captions for non-English films, video resolution less than 720p HD)

Overall Rating
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    Mary C. Ferrara

    Thanks so much to the awards for my film Schmoopie, I am so humbled. A pleasure working with you guys!!

    April 2018
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    Justin Fontenot

    Very happy to be part of the TOP SHORTS Film Festival!!!!

    April 2018
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    Lauren Shein

    Honoured to have won an award for my film Kitchen Sink Classic. Great experience!! Highly recommend. Thank you Roy and the Tops Short team.

    April 2018
  • Truly useful and strongly recommended

    April 2018
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    Manuel Sonnleitner

    Very good festival, nice team it was an honor that to win a prize :) highly recommend

    April 2018