2019 Palm Springs International ShortFest: June 18-24, 2019

Submissions for ShortFest 2019 are closed.


ShortFest Submission FAQ


What are the deadlines/fees?
​October 1 - December 3: Early Bird ($40/$30​ student) 
December 4 -  January 7: Standard ($50/$40​ student)
January 8 - February 11: ($60/$50​ student)
February 11, 2019 - Deadline
February 25, 2019 - Extended Deadline

How do I submit?
We accept short films with a runtime of 40 minutes or less via Withoutabox and FilmFreeway. You must submit officially through one of these platforms to be considered. Vimeo screeners are preferred.

Can I get a fee waiver?
Unfortunately, we are unable to grant fee waivers or discounts for submissions. The Palm Springs International ShortFest is mounted by the Palm Springs International Film Society, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. Organizing a non-profit festival, much like making a film, is a labor intensive and costly endeavor.

Do you accept works-in-progress?
We prefer not to receive works-in-progress. You may submit an unfinished film with notes on missing components but new cuts are not guaranteed to be viewed after the film has been submitted.

What are the submission requirements?

  1. Completed entry on FilmFreeway or Withoutabox.
  2. Digital screener - Vimeo link or Withoutabox Secure Online Screener (Vimeo link is preferred)
  3. Paid entry fee

What are the requirements to submit?

  • Films must have been completed in 2018 or 2019.
  • Films must be no more than 40 minutes in length, credits included.
  • If selected, films must be available for projection in DCP.
  • All non-English-language films must have English subtitles.
  • Submissions must be uploaded and submitted no later than the deadline date to qualify for the respective entry fees.
  • If sending a check, check must be in U.S. dollars drawn on a United States bank. NO NON-U.S. CHECKS ACCEPTED.
  • When you provide a check as payment, you authorize PSIFF either to use information from your check to make a one-time electronic fund transfer from your account or to process the payment as a check transaction.

Do I need a DCP?
You will only need a DCP if you are selected in the Official Program. You do not need to have a DCP for consideration. For consideration, only a digital screener (Vimeo link or Withoutabox secure online screener) attached to your submission is required.

When will I be notified about my submission?
ShortFest notifies on a rolling basis so if you haven't heard from us, it means your film is still in consideration. Final notifications will go out in late May.

Do I need to submit a press kit or any other materials?
You will not need to submit a press kit, a DCP or photos unless you have been selected to screen in the Official Selection. The programming department will be directly in touch with materials requests.

FAQ | ShortFest

What is ShortFest?

The Palm Springs International ShortFest-now in its 25th year-is one of the largest showcases of short films in North America. The seven-day competitive festival is Academy Award, BAFTA and Goya-qualifying and screens approximately 330 short films from 60 countries in a series of 90-minute programs.The Festival has 17 competitive categories with prize money and services valued at over $70,000. First-place winners in the Non-student Animation, Non-student Documentary and Non-student Live-Action categories, as well as the Best of the Fest Award winner will automatically become eligible for nomination consideration by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in the short film categories.

ShortFest Video Library

All films submitted-regardless of whether they ultimately screen during the Festival-are automatically included in the Video Library. The Film Library runs concurrently with the Festival and consists of secure viewing stations open to accredited sales agents, distributors and other industry representatives. The Video Library is not considered a public screening and does not affect a film's premiere status.

How many times do Official Selection films play?

Films play once except for Opening Night films, which play twice, as well as our award-winning films, and the highest scored films which will play again during our Best of Fest screenings on June 25, 2018.

How are films programmed?

The Official Selection is grouped into 90-minute programs by theme. We might mix student and non-student films, animations and documentaries in any one program.

Is my film in competition?

The entire Official Selection is eligible for competition, and the programming team will internally narrow this list down in early June. We do not announce shortlists, but instead wait for the awards ceremony to announce the winners.

Video Library

What is the ShortFest Video Library?

The ShortFest Video Library runs concurrently with ShortFest and consists of 4,000+ titles available for viewing on secure screening stations open to accredited sales agents, distributors and other industry representatives. The Video Library is not considered a public screening and does not affect a film's premiere status.  

How do I participate in the Video Libraryt?

Every film that submits to ShortFest is automatically included in the ShortFest Film Market, unless the filmmaker opts out.

Is the Video Library the same as Official Selection?

No, the Video Library includes all the films submitted to ShortFest for consideration. It is designed to allow filmmakers to promote their films, whether they made Official Selection or not.

Are there laurels for Video Library films?

No, we only offer "Official Selection" laurels.

Do I send a DVD or other materials for the Video Library?

You will not need to submit additional materials if you are participating in the Market, though you are welcome to bring screening copies, press kits, buttons and postcards to hand out to industry and media for additional exposure if you attend.

Will the Video Library affect my premiere status?

The Market is not considered a public screening and will not affect a film's premiere status.

Who has access to the Video Library?

The Video Library is open only to accredited ShortFest industry and filmmakers.

How to opt out of the Video Library

If you would like to opt out of the Video Library, please email


Why should I attend ShortFest?

ShortFest is an excellent opportunity to network while having fun. This is a filmmaker's festival and every part of ShortFest is designed to engage our guests - from the screenings to the parties.
If you are a Market Filmmaker, you will have access to the Video Library, the Filmmaker & Industry Lounge, screenings and the Forum with your complimentary badge. You may also upgrade your badge for access to parties.

Does the festival cover travel and accommodations?

Unfortunately, we do not have the budget to offer travel or accommodations. 

What are the awards and which categories qualify? (Oscar qualifying in red)

Non-Student & Student Awards (both non-student and student films may be eligible to win)

  • Best of the Festival - eligible for Oscar consideration
  • Grand Jury Award
  • Best North American Short
  • Youth Jury Award
  • Bridging the Borders Award
  • Audience - Best Documentary Short
  • Audience - Best Animated Short
  • Audience - Best of ShortFest Online

Non-Student Awards

  • Best Animated Short - eligible for Oscar consideration
  • Best Documentary Short
  • Best Live Action Over 15 Min - eligible for Oscar consideration
  • Best Live Action 15 min & under - eligible for Oscar consideration
  • Future Filmmaker Award

Student Awards

  • Best Student Animated Short
  • Best Student Documentary Short
  • Best Student Live Action Over 15 Min
  • Best Student Live Action 15 min & under
  • Alexis Award

2019 Palm Springs International Film Festival: January 3-14, 2019

Submission deadline for the 2019 Palm Springs International Film Festival has passed (September 1, 2018).