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Enter Your Film

Kia ora and welcome to Show Me Shorts – Aotearoa New Zealand’s leading international short film festival. Our mission is to connect New Zealand audiences with short films and share New Zealand short films with the world. We celebrate the short film art form and champion short film makers!

Entries for 2022 are now open via FilmFreeway.

Show Me Shorts is now a hybrid festival that includes 100 physical screenings in 40 cinemas across New Zealand, plus online screenings via the Show Me Shorts On Demand platform that is geo-blocked to New Zealand.

The 17th edition of the festival will take place during 7-30 October 2022.

The Opening Night event will take place in Auckland on Friday 7 October. This will be followed by a seperate Awards Night event, and two more Opening Night celebrations in Wellington and Christchurch.

We also provide professional development and networking opportunities for aspiring short film makers through our Screenwriting Lab, Short Film Talks, Filmmaker Resources and various masterclasses.

We can’t wait to view your short film! Here is all the information you need to enter.


What are we looking for?

We are seeking cinematic narrative-style short films with strong audience appeal. The films must be between 2-20 minutes long, and made within the previous two years. They can be any genre, and made in any country. We accept animation, documentary, comedy, horror, drama and everything in between. We don’t have a premiere requirement, but we do prioritise films that are making their premiere in our festival.

We also accept New Zealand music videos between 1-10 minutes long. As with the short films, we are primarily seeking cinematic films that offer a narrative or strong story telling perspective.

Each year our experienced programming team curates a selection of the best short films and music videos from thousands of submissions that come in from around the world. Diversity is at the heart of our programming strategy. The selection of films each year covers a wide range of themes and subjects, including horror, drama, animation, comedy, documentary and everything in between. The stories in our short films offer audience members the chance to escape into new worlds, learn more about ourselves and connect with others.


Submissions are processed via FilmFreeway.

Why should you enter Show Me Shorts?

GET SEEN ACROSS NEW ZEALAND: If you want your short film to be seen in New Zealand, Show Me Shorts is your best choice. We are the only festival dedicated exclusively to screening short films throughout Aotearoa. That means that all of our energy goes into connecting your short film with our audiences.

WORK WITH THE BEST: We’ve been doing this for more than a decade. We have the experience, the relationships and the passion.

WIN AWARDS: All selected films compete for a range of awards and a prize pool valued at more than NZ$40,000. Show Me Shorts is proud to be New Zealand’s first Academy Awards® accredited festival, with the winners of our Best NZ Film and Best International Film awards becoming eligible for entry to the Oscars®. Check out the Prizes page of our website for the full list of awards and prizes.

GET REPRESENTATION: We act as a sales agent for many of the New Zealand short films that have screened in our festival. We will offer to represent your short film, making sales to TV channels and VOD platforms both in New Zealand and internationally.

LEARNING & DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES: As part of the festival, Show Me Shorts provides resources, professional development and networking opportunities for filmmakers through our Short Film Talks, Filmmaker Resources and Screenwriting Lab.

To get the most out of your festival experience with Show Me Shorts make sure you sign up to our monthly e-mail newsletter and follow us on Facebook. We provide regular updates about festival programming, workshops, awards, news and opportunities.

Entry guidelines

ON DEMAND SCREENINGS: By entering the film festival you are granting Show Me Shorts permission to screen your film in cinemas as well as through our secure online platform that will be geo-blocked to New Zealand.

GENRE: Films and music videos can be any genre.

LENGTH: Films are to be no less than 2 minutes and no more than 20 minutes in length (including end credits). Music video must be no less than 1 minute and no more than 10 minutes in length.

COMPLETION DATE: Films and music videos must have been completed no earlier than two years before the start date of the festival.

BROADCASTING: Films must not have previously been shown publicly on the internet. This does not apply to music videos or to short films entered in the ‘Not in competition’ category.

SUBTITLES: All entries with dialogue not in the English language must be subtitled in English.


  • Earlybird Deadline: 1 April (shorts US$20 / music videos US$5)
  • Regular Deadline: 1 May (shorts US$30 / music videos US$10)
  • Late Deadline: 1 June (shorts US$40 / music videos US$15)
  • Extended Deadline: 1 July (shorts US$50 / music videos US$20)

UNFINISHED FILMS: Please contact us before the deadline to request permission to submit an incomplete film, or have an extension granted.

ENTRY CATEGORIES: Show Me Shorts has four categories of entry.

  • NZ films – Films made by New Zealanders or with significant New Zealand content are eligible for the ‘New Zealand short films’ entry category.
  • International films – Films made without significant NZ contribution or content are eligible for the ‘International short films’ entry category.
  • Out of competition – New Zealand or international films that are or have been publicly available online in New Zealand are only eligible for the ‘Out of competition’ entry category.
  • NZ music videos – New Zealand music videos are eligible for the ‘New Zealand Music video’ entry category.

AWARDS CRITERIA: To find out if you qualify for our awards please see our Awards Criteria web page.

POSTAGE: All postage costs are the responsibility of the sender.

PROMO USE: Show Me Shorts reserves the right to use up to 30 seconds of selected films for promotional purposes.

How do you enter?

Click through to submit your film via FilmFreeway.

Got more questions?

Want more information? Check out our FAQ page to see a list of answers to common questions.