The Texas International Short Documentary Award is an international quarterly competition for documentary films between 45-60 minutes. It is run under the auspices of Image Essays, a non-profit production company in Houston, Texas that creates media projects of social, political and historical interest that open minds, provoke dialogue, and encourage positive social change. All submitted documentaries must adhere to these principles.

Our main mission is to support talented international filmmakers and create opportunities for their development and visibility. Our exclusive partnership with distribution company Espresso Media allows us to offer something that few other festivals can: INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION OF YOUR DOCUMENTARY!

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All films will be reviewed by our jury which consists of industry professionals, journalists, award-winning filmmakers and a volunteer audience.

​Winning films will be notified within two weeks after the competition period and will receive our official laurel. We do not announce nominees, only winners. There are no "Official Selection", "Semi-Finalist" or "Finalist" categories.

SPECIAL PRIZE: Each quarter, the winner of Best International Short Documentary will additionally get an AMAZING OPPORTUNITY with distribution company Espresso Media ( Espresso Media will review your film and, if they determine that it is commercially viable, you may be offered a distribution contract. You are under no obligation to accept but attracting a distributor can be quite difficult and this is a unique opportunity offered only to the best films.

- Documentaries from any country may be entered but films made in languages other than English must have English subtitles.
- Filmmakers may enter any technical category, provided the film has first been submitted to either the International Short Documentary or Student Documentary categories.
- The submitter must be directly involved (producer, director) with the project or legally authorized to represent the project submitted.
- All commercial/private property including all trademarks and copyrighted materials shown or recorded in the project is the responsibility of the filmmaker. We will NOT take responsibility for any infringement of copy-written materials.
- All submissions must be submitted via digital screener (Vimeo, FilmFreeway, other screening service). We DO NOT accept physical submissions.
- All decisions are final.
- We do not accept pornographic material.
- Parts of your film (including trailer/teaser/film poster/stills) will be used for promotional purposes.
- Entry fees are non-refundable.