The Dare to Struggle Short Film Festival aims to celebrate the stories and struggles of individuals, groups and communities trying to improve the world and create a fairer and more just society.
Building on the strong history of Australian and international working class and progressive film making, the Dare to Struggle Film Festival is a unique festival for filmmakers from all walks of life at any level of film making experience. Amateur, middling, or professional – if you document radical struggle and make issue-based short films, then the DTSFF is for you. The DTSFF is looking for short films, no more than 8 mins, from progressive filmmakers around the world.

(Note Prizes will be different from 2022)

2022 had a $13,500 Prize Pool.
1st Prize The Jack Mundey Prize AUD $5,000
2nd Prize AUD $2,000
3rd Prize AUD $1,000
Amateur Film Prize AUD $1,500
Youth Prize AUD $1,500
Judy Mundey Patron Prize AUD $1,500

Festival Vision
By submitting your film it represents an agreement with these Terms and Conditions:

The Dare to Struggle Film Festival will be known as "The Festival"

Person/s and organisations submitting works for consideration as part of The Festival will be known as "The Entrant".

Short Films submitted for consideration as part of The Festival will be known as "The Work".

To be considered eligible for entry, The Work must fulfill the below criteria.

Who is the Festival open to?
Any person or filmmaker, any level of film making. Professional filmmakers, student, semi professional filmmakers, amateur filmmakers, high school and tertiary students, etc. (In order to be eligible for the Student Special Prize, students will be defined as a person under the age of 24 years. ) Older students are still eligible for other prizes.

Who can submit a short film?
Any individual or organisation (funded or unfunded), union or NGO, any group of people who have made a short film, a producer with crew, a director with crew, etc There is no age requirement.

Genre and subject matter
All film genres are eligible – including documentary, drama, doco-drama, animation, music clip etc.

DTSFF is an issues-based film festival, so we want to see your short stories covering subjects from workers rights, to human rights, social justice, environmental, refugee, migrant and First Nations issues, and everything in between.

Language of films
Any language but non English speaking parts will need English subtitles.

Length of film
Maximum 10 minutes inclusive of opening title and credits.

The Work must be an original work and The Entrant must guarantee that they have the rights to any material featured in the work.

The work must be submitted through FilmFreeway website and be submitted by March 18 2022 with a FINAL DEADLINE of March 31, 2022. If submitting after March 18, use the waiver code: DTSLate2022.

Be submitted with the correct entry fee and classification.

Be submitted with a one line synopsis and a 200 word synopsis, as well as two publicity images in hi res (300dpi), along with a copy of your budget.

Tech specs
FilmFreeway accepts all major video formats in full quality HD up to 10 GB.
Maximum video bitrate: 2200 Kbps, H.264, mp4
Audio: 128 Kbps, AAC, 2 channel stereo
Aspect ratio preserved; maximum video height of 720 pixels

(2023 Conditions to be updated soon).

2022 Festival Conditions
DTSFF is seeking contemporary and relevant issue based short films. All film entries must be completed in the years between 2019 and 2022. Preferably with, but not limited to, inclusion of an easily identifiable element showing it has been completed no earlier than 2019.

Film cannot have had a public (premiere film screening at cinema or other or a television release. Films screened in cinemas as part of a competition are eligible.
All selected Works will receive an "Official Selection" Dare to Struggle Film Festival 2023 Laurels graphic for use in all promotional material.

Filmmakers to ensure that they have signed release forms for film participants and confirmation of no breach of copyrighted material, including music.
Non acceptable content: Pornography (nudity ok), promotion of gambling, tobacco, alcohol. Product placement of commercial goods.

The Dare to Struggle Film Festival takes no responsibility for any breach of copyright by other parties.

Successful Entrants will provide an MP4 or mov file of The Work for conversion to appropriate CODEC for screening within 10 days of receiving request from the Festival. If correct format is not submitted, selected film may be withdrawn from The Festival.

The Entrant grants The Festival rights to exhibit The Work in Australia and online via the Dare To Struggle Film Festival's website, social media and Youtube channels.

The Dare to Struggle Film Festival Shorts curated program of films selected from The Work submitted and as deemed appropriate by the Selection Panel.

For promotional purposes, if requested and if entrant is agreeable, selected entrants may make themselves available for media and/or send a short piece to camera.

The Dare to Struggle Film Festival Committee, staff and their immediate families may enter but will not be ineligible for a prize.

The judges decision will be final and no correspondence will be entered into. Judges who have any connection with any Work, will declare a conflict of interest and not judge that Work.

Overall Rating
  • Excellent first-time festival.
    Great city center venue and good to have my film shown with high-quality and meaningful films.

    June 2022
  • Amanda King

    What a brilliant debut- a fascinating and diverse range of films both national and international. Great quality and unique content. We can imagine there’ll be a great level of interest for the next one. Congratulations to the organising team, sponsors, patrons and judges.

    May 2022
  • Lynn Santer

    A daring new festival indeed! Very cordial and professional with a keen eye for those daring to make a difference. I hope that next year they will permit films longer than 10 minutes but either way I wish them great success with their vision.
    In solidarity.

    April 2022