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Suburbia Journal believes in the power of storytelling in all its many forms. Each medium of fiction—novels, films, television shows, podcasts, audiobooks, video games—has their own unique narrative strategies at their disposal. With the short film, we are interested in the immediacy of it, the innate tension that comes with telling a story with brevity. We are also intrigued by how color and cinematography can alter the emotional resonance and mood of a scene. Though the written word has its own advantages, film provides a visual, atmospheric landscape. We are excited to view what you send us.


You can find our guidelines for this contest below.

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-Please send us one short film between one and twenty minutes.

-You may send us a .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .mov, or .api file through Submittable. Or you can send us a YouTube link in your cover letter.

-Submissions are free for high school students. $17 is the fee otherwise. This is used to pay the director(s) of the winning films.

-Short films can be documentaries, live-action, or animation—experimentation with genre, form, cinematography, characterization, etc. is accepted and encouraged.

-For inspiration, some of our current favorite short films are “Munchausen” (dir. Ari Aster), “Brothers” (dir. Robert Eggers), “Ala Kachuu - Take and Run” (dir. Maria Brendle), and “The Dress” (dir. Tadeusz Łysiak).

-Please feel free to interpret “avant-garde” however you see fit. We believe a film can be considered experimental and innovative not only with its form, but also with its daring plots, characters, and settings. Most of all, we are simply looking for excellent storytelling.

-The winner of the 2022 Short Film Contest will be awarded $500 and a physical trophy. 2nd and 3rd will receive trophies. The top three films will be showcased at our 2022 awards ceremony.

-Submissions for this contest will be accepted from June 2022, until December 31st, 2022. The ceremony will take place in January/February.

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