The Vancouver Short Film Festival (VSFF) is committed to the celebration of the vibrant community of Canadian short film, documentary, and animation artists and their works. We focus on elevating talent from British Columbia and connecting BC creators to the greater film industry nation-wide. Building ties between emerging and established professionals, we provide an arena where all short filmmakers, including students, can showcase their films to a public audience and support their fellow colleagues. Our ultimate goal is to connect short filmmakers to a broader audience in order to grow local film industries.

VSFF accepts all formats and genres of short-form content (other than VR/AR content), including but not limited to: Narrative, Documentary, Animation, Experimental, Music Video, Web Series episodes, Drama, Comedy, Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller, Fantasy, Noir, and more.

For our 2023 Festival, VSFF is planning a Hybrid format event, including in-person theatrical screenings in Vancouver, as well as online screenings available Canada-wide.

Best Canadian Short Film
Best BC Short Film
Best Student Film
Best Documentary Film
Best Animated Film
Best After Dark Film
Best Director
Best Screenplay
Best Cinematography
Best Editing
Best Sound Design
Best Visual FX
Best Performance
Impact Award
Audience Choice

Note: Films selected in the After Dark screening category remain eligible for all applicable festival awards.

ALL FESTIVAL SUBMISSIONS IN “CANADA” CATEGORIES MUST HAVE AT LEAST ONE KEY CAST OR KEY CREATIVE CREW MEMBER WHO IS A CANADIAN RESIDENT. Should your film not have at least one key cast or key creative crew member who is a resident of Canada, your film will be disqualified and you will NOT be refunded your entry fee.

ALL FESTIVAL SUBMISSIONS IN “BC” CATEGORIES MUST HAVE AT LEAST ONE CAST OR CREW MEMBER WHO IS A BRITISH COLUMBIA (CANADA) RESIDENT. Should your film not have at least one cast or crew member (ANY role) who is a resident of British Columbia, Canada, you will be refunded your submission fee and asked to re-apply in a “Canada” category.

Festival Submissions that submit in “Canada” categories, but are eligible for BC categories, will be accepted, but will not be refunded any difference in submission fee.

For the purpose of “Key Cast” or “Key Creative Crew Member” as outlined above for “Canada” categories, eligible roles include: Director, Screenwriter, Producer, Lead Performer/Main Subject, Director of Photography, Production Designer, Art Director, Sound Designer/Mixer, Music Composer, Picture Editor, Key Animation, or any other role that may reasonably be considered as a key creative contributor to the production. Please contact us at should you have any questions about your eligibility.

Please only submit your film to either a Professional/General, Student OR After Dark category. If you are uncertain which category you should submit to, please submit to the category you feel is the best fit for your film based on the descriptions of the categories. Your film will not be eliminated from consideration for the After Dark screening category (if our Programming team feels it is suitable) as a result of your submission category, and vice versa. Your film may be selected for an After Dark screening block, even if submitted to a Professional or Student category, if our Programming team feels it is suitable.

Films must be no longer than 30 minutes in total runtime, including credits. Please be aware that our programming blocks are only 80-110 minutes long.

Films must have been completed by 2018 or later.

For the 2023 edition, the Vancouver Short Film Festival (VSFF) is closely monitoring the guidelines and regulations regarding COVID-19’s effect on live screenings, festivals, and events in Vancouver. VSFF reserves the right to alter, postpone or otherwise change the format in which VSFF is delivered in response to COVID-19, which may include in-person and/or online screenings and events that may or may not be delivered during the festival’s current Event Date.

By submitting this form and film entry, I guarantee that the submission is original work and that there are no ownership or copyright disputes regarding my entry. I am authorized to submit this film and affirm that my submission will not violate any law or right of any person or entity.

Should your film be selected for the VSFF 2023 programme, VSFF may opt to screen your film as part of future year-round screening programs, including retrospective, educational, and/or ancillary festival programming. If your film is selected for one of these screening programs, you will be notified and participation will be optional. Inclusion in year-round screening programs may up to a maximum of ten (10) years after the film’s premiere at VSFF.

I indemnify and hold The Vancouver Short Film Festival Society, its directors, producers, staff, volunteers, and affiliated entities harmless and will defend them against any damage to or loss of the film, any claims, demands, losses, damages, judgments, liabilities and expenses, including attorney’s fees, arising out of or in connection with any and all claims of third parties based on my work submitted to The Vancouver Short Film Festival.

I understand that failure to comply with The Vancouver Short Film Festival guidelines will disqualify my entry and result in forfeiture of my submission fee. Should your film not have at least one key cast or key creative crew who is a Canadian resident, your film will be disqualified and you will NOT be refunded your entry fee. By submitting your film to the VSFF, you agree that the VSFF has the right to use clips, images, and/or sound from your film for promotional purposes in the form of, but not limited to, print, radio, television, and Internet media.

Overall Rating
  • Rosie Choo Pidcock

    fantastic festival, caring and supporting admin who pivoted last minute to a fully digital event. great communication throughout, would not hesitate to submit to VSFF again! I also love that they really make the effort for filmmakers to get to know each other. VSFF rocks!

    February 2022
  • I wonderful festival to be a part of! They really brought filmmakers together! Thank you VSFF!

    February 2022
  • What can I say? What a fantastic festival. The organisers went above and beyond to make it a great experience. The networking was particular brilliant, and I am so glad I got to meet so many filmmakers despite being virtual. I also really loved that the film programs were limited to 24 hours of viewing, it really gave it that intense film event feel that you would have had in person too!

    And a huge thank you to the festival for awarding Cat and moth the "Best Animation" award sponsored by Spark Animation! Woohoo!

    February 2022
  • Kris Fleerackers

    A very well-organized festival with a great selection of films. It was a delight and an honour that my film had its world première here. Also great was the effort the organizers put into making the online-only experience so meaningful for filmmakers, now that Covid made in-person events impossible. I'm even wondering if I got more out of meeting so many people here than I would have gotten out of a live networking event. Thank you!

    February 2022
  • Fantastic festival with organizers and hosts that really care about the Canadian film community. High quality films and fun industry panels round out this competitive and fun event. While it was disappointing to have the in-person screenings cancelled (thx Covid!), the online presentation through Eventive, and the Zoom Events put on by the organizers were lovely.

    February 2022