shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival is a premier venue for the exhibition and promotion of short films. The festival is an exceptional twelve-day event with a unique concept – a transnational film festival simultaneously taking place in eight cities on five continents worldwide. The festival includes four main segments:

shnit FINALE
shnnit APP

The shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival includes four award categories with cash prizes of US $20.000* and attracts award-winning short filmmakers from around the globe. As a result, shnit presents a competition program of exceptional quality and density.

In it‘s Sixteen years of existence, shnit has become a major international short film festival that reinvents itself in ever new forms. What started as a local initiative is now an exceptional transnational event that connects and inspires makers and fans of short films across the globe. shnit embraces diversity, originality and exchange between creators and an audience from different cultures and backgrounds. It is the main goal to actively increase the perception of short filmmaking by creating a multi-platform event for high-quality short films. With its cinematic treats, the popular festival fascinates more than 35.000 visitors and therefore belongs to the leading short film festivals in the world.

shnit is a non-profit organization. The annual festival is created and centrally coordinated by the shnit FOUNDATION in cooperation with the executives. The organization is built on principles of excellence and professionalism, enabling the global expansion of the festival possible.

The shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival includes four award categories with cash prizes of US $20,000 and attracts award-winning short filmmakers from around the globe. As a result, shnit presents a competition program of exceptional quality and density. The prestigious award THE FLAMING FAUN is granted to the winners during shnit FINALE in New York.

The shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival is a non-profit organization. The annual festival and its film sections are created and centrally coordinated by the shnit FOUNDATION in cooperation with the PLAYGROUND executives. The organization is built on principles of excellence and professionalism, enabling the global expansion of the festival. This requires active cooperation between PLAYGROUND executives which, in return, strengthens the transnational network of «shortfilmmakers» and the growing community of «short-filmlovers». The festival delivers a high quality program of new and established international short films.
The shnit FOUNDATION [CHE-485.790.832] is an international not for profit registered foundation based in Switzerland.
The final selection of all films presented at the festival and their placement in the program is the responsibility of the festival board.

The participation is open to everyone.
The competition exists in two categories: INTERNATIONAL COM-PETITION (see also [4.1]) and NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) (without entry fee). Films may compete in both INTERNATIONAL COM-PETITION and NATIONAL COMPETITION simultaneously.
The festival is open to short films of all production techniques, including animation, documentary, drama, experimental or artist film and hybrid work from low to high budgets.
Films must have a running time of less than 40 minutes, including credits (see also [3] AWARDS & PRIZES).
The festival does not require any premiere status but notes that this may come into consideration during the selection process. Films must have been completed after 1st of June 2016.
Films that have previously been submitted to the festival will not be accepted. While the festival does accept works-in-progress, films will only be considered for programming for the year in which they are first submitted.
For preview screening copies: All non-English language films (or non-standard English language dialects) must provide English subtitles.
Submissions may not be withdrawn from the festival once they have been entered, except at the sole discretion of the festival.
All films are eligible for the corresponding category within the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION or NATIONAL COMPETITION. In consultation with the filmmaker the selection committee reserves the right to offer a place in all other programs.

In total a prize money of US-Dollar 20.000* is awarded in shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival 2018.

Category up to 10 Minutes (incl. credits) | US-$ 5.000*
Category up to 20 Minutes (incl. credits) | US-$ 5.000*
Category up to 40 Minutes (incl. credits) | US-$ 5.000*

All the officially selected films 2018.

All Audience Votes | US-$ 5.000*

Jury and Audience prizes will be awarded in the following NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) 2018:


All NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) will be awarded according to each PLAYGROUND’s policy.
A film that is eligible for the NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) and was selected to the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION will be automatically selected also to the NATIONAL COMPETITION(S).
We do not pay screening fees for officially selected films of the program 2018.
Audiences and shnit TRIBUTE and the PLAYGROUNDS NATIONAL COMPETITION Awards will not be awarded to the same film.

INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION winners must attend the award ceremony on October 28nd 2018 in New York City in order to receive the award, the cash prize and the statuette THE FLAMING FAUN. NATIONAL COMPETITION winners must attend the relevant national awards ceremony to receive their award.
All awards will be handed personally to the director. In exceptional cases only, a representative can be put in charge (upon agreement with the festival board).
Winners shall mention their awards in future publicity/film copies of the winning short film as well as in their professional resumes, web pages and similar media.
The prize money will be paid out by bank transfer the latest by the end of the year 2018 upon receipt of all necessary bank details. Bank charges (if applicable) are to be borne by the recipient of the prize money.

Official deadline for entries: June 1st 2018.
There are two submission categories for entering a short film: INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION and NATIONAL COMPETITION(S). Both submissions qualify a film for consideration for the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION and all rights associated therewith. Dual submission is not necessary.
shnit has partnered with web portals to accept digital submissions. For submission on our partner platforms please refer to the respective guidelines on their websites (
Additionally, you can submit your film through our website
Please choose ONE way to submit your film.


The entry deadlines:

Earlybird Deadline 1st January 2018 0 US-$ (No fee)
Early Deadline 1st March 2018 25 US-$
Regular Deadline 1st May 2018 35 US-$
Late Deadline 1st June 2018 45 US-$

[4.2] NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) – without entry fee

There is no submission fee to enter your film to a NATIONAL COMPETITION.
The eligible countries are:


The following films are eligible for NATIONAL COMPETITION(S):

Films produced within the relevant country
Films directed by a national of the relevant country

Submissions for a NATIONAL COMPETITION automatically qualify for consideration for the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION. A dual submission is not necessary.

[4.3] Guidelines for submission on

Preview copies are accepted on the following formats: A password secured link, DVD, BluRay, hard drive or USB pen drive (postmarked –make sure that the package arrives by June 6th the latest).
Account to pay the entry fee to: shnit FOUNDATION
IBAN: CH92 0079 0016 9705 0699 8 / BIC: KBBECH22XXX
Or via Paypal -
Please make sure that you indicate your film title as payment reference.
Submission parcels must be labeled «NO COMMERCIAL VALUE – FOR CULTURAL PURPOSES ONLY». The value of goods is to be declared with 1 US-$.
Shipping costs for preview copies will neither be refunded nor returned. Preview copies will be digitized and stored in the festival archive.
Preview copies must be sent to the following address:
shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival | shnit FOUNDATION
Marktgasse 36 | CH-3011 Bern | SWITZERLAND
Several films may be submitted. A separate entry form is required for each film submission.
Illegible or incomplete entry forms will not be accepted.
Additional material such as press packs and production information are not required at this stage and should not be included.

Arrival of submissions and preview copies cannot be confirmed.
An independent selection committee is appointed by the festival to view all submissions for programming consideration. All entries are first considered for the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION and the NATIONAL COMPETITION(S) but will also be considered for other programs where appropriate. Decisions made by the selection committee are final.
The final selection will be released online at on September 1st 2018. Only the submitters of the selected films will be contacted personally.
Participants are not entitled to claim rental or other fees for the screenings of their films at the festival.

The festival will request the submission of the screening copies from successful applicants. Please do not submit screening copies before you get the instructions. We request a digital file for scree-ning: Video tape formats or film prints are not applicable.
Screening copies must be submitted before July 30th 2018.
Every screening copy need English subtitles in a separate srt subtitle file.

[7] shnit FESTIVAL
The festival date is 18 – 28 October 2018.
The dates of the festival segments are:

shnit PLAYGROUNDS 18 – 28 October 2018
8 Festival cities - playing most of the program
shnit CINEMAS 18 – 28 October 2018
Selected cinemas and cultural centers in various countries
shnit APP** 18 Oct.1 – Nov 2018
online screening | Password restricted
shnit FINALE 28 October 2018
Award ceremony taking place in New York

All cities involved in the festival will be announced in September 2018 at the latest.
The festival hosts industry professionals and guests, and offers guest and meeting services. (See also [8] VISITING THE FESTIVAL).
Extracts of the film (under 3 minutes or up to 10% of the total length of the film) and film stills may be used at the festival, for media coverage (including but not limited to TV broadcasting, cinema trailers, online media) and promotional (incl. shnit-postcards), archival and other non-commercial purposes.
Contact information for all films selected for screening at the 2018 festival will be published in the festival catalogue and / or on the website.
The festival will make previews of selected films 2018 available to the media, industry representatives and official jury members.
A selection of films from the 2018 festival may be screened as a shnit PREVIEW (preview screening) before the festival. Best efforts will be made to ensure that filmmakers whose films are being screened in shnit PREVIEW will be informed about the place(s) and date(s) of the screening(s).
The three festival segments together will play the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION. The three segments are: shnit PLAYGROUNDS, shnit CINEMAS and shnit APP** The global audience will vote with our online voting system.
For each of the four award categories three films will be nominated.
The festival segment shnit FINALE presents all 9 nominated films from the INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION and 3 AUDIENCE nominated films in New York.
After October 28th the four winning films will be made available, for a duration of three days until November 1th 2018 in a password-protected secure online environment and/or shnit APP for a fee or by invitation only.
After the festival, a selection of films from the official Program may be screened as a BEST OF–program, in cinemas and cultural centers in various countries. Best efforts will be made to ensure that filmmakers whose films are being screened as BEST OF will be informed about the place(s) and date(s) of the screening(s).

A selection of the winners of the NATIONAL COMPETITIONS 2018 will be screened in all PLAYGROUND-cities in the next festival edition.

The directors of selected films are invited to be guests of the festival and the festival may cover the expenses of their stay (private accommodations, professional accreditation). All hospitality arrangements are assigned by the respective managers of each segment and remain limited within one’s reach.
If the director or producer of the film cannot attend the festival, the invitation may be forwarded to another member of the film crew or cast.
More information about guest services will be provided personally to successful applicants.

[9] shnit SHOWREEL PKB
The festival hosts an online showreel platform for professionals. The aim of shnit SHOWREEL is to promote quality short films within a professional realm to enhance future success of films selected by the festival.
Extracts of films, film stills and contact information for all films selected for screening at the 2018 festival could be published on the website of shnit SHOWREEL.
All short films selected for the festival will be encoded and included in the digital showreel, available to delegates who attend the festival and registered professionals only.
After the festival the films will remain available to registered delegates.
The involvement in shnit SHOWREEL is not compulsory. Should you wish not to be included please email to before September 1st 2018.
shnit SHOWREEL is a working title and is subject to change without prior notice.

The sender of the submitted film is responsible for all copyrights. He is legally authorized to enter his short film in the festival and, if selected for the festival, authorized to give screening permission.
The applicant has secured all necessary rights for both picture and sound, and exhibition will not violate or infringe upon any rights, including but not limited to music, images, and content.
If selected for the festival the applicant acknowledges and agrees that an exhibition quality digital screening file must be made available for screening by July 30th 2018.
The film, including all copyrights, remains the property of the author.
The films will be handled with the outmost care. However, the festival management will assume no liability for damages or loss.
The applicant has to read and accept the regulations and guidelines for participation.
Failure to comply with these terms and conditions may result in the submission being disqualified.
In the event of disagreement concerning the interpretation of the terms and conditions, the interpretation of the festival will take precedence.
The festival is obliged not to use or dispose of any films for commercial purposes. Any further use of a film will be inquired about if relevant.
The non-profit nature of the foundation’s activities guarantees that the works submitted will be used only to advance the cultural objectives of the shnit FOUNDATION.
These regulations are subject to change without prior notice.

*For reasons of planning security the shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival has to link the amount of 20.000 US-$ (4 x 5.000 US-$) to the international exchange rate of the Swiss Franc (CHF). Record date is January 1th 2018. The exact paid-off prize money amount will be determined at the time of transfer by the ending of the year 2018. Note The amount either corresponds to the equivalent of 5.000 US-$ or (in case of currency weakness of the Swiss Franc) will be converted to the corresponding amount in US-$ in relation to the exchange rate of Swiss Francs (CHF) according to the record date. No legal claim on the part of applicants can be asserted in terms of cash prizes.

**shnit APP is a working title and is subject to change without prior notice.

Note: for the sake of readability the masculine form was chosen in the text above. Nevertheless the specifications are meant for all genders.

Overall Rating
  • Mi cortometraje no quedó en competencia sino en la sección de muestra. Sin embargo, los organizadores siempre estuvieron atentos a mis necesidades y pendientes de todo. Fue una grata experiencia que espero repetir en los próximos años.

    November 2018
  • I wasn't able to attend but from the photos it seemed like a great event. My film played in Russia and got feedback on Vimeo from people who'd seen it in the theatre as well and they said they loved the event. I felt like i got good communication from the team as well.

    November 2017
  • Great festival, and great communication!.

    November 2017
  • Sean Wirz

    Great festival, awesome and motivated staff of volunteers and cool festival concept. Unfortunately the quality of the screenings is poor and unprofessional and technical support is cumbersome.

    November 2017
  • Aidan Whytock

    This is the best short film festival I've been to. World class short films under one roof and a collection of some of the best, most ambitious and approachable filmmakers.

    November 2017