Annapolis Film Festival Seeks Submissions For 2024 Shorts Challenge


The Annual Shorts Challenge, a live pitch competition before industry judges and a live audience, is a staple of the Annapolis Film Festival. In the competition, five filmmaker finalists will vie to win a production package valued at more than $30,000 to assist them in making their short film.

This year's overarching theme, "Out of the Box," invites participants to explore new and unconventional approaches in concept, storytelling, technical presentation or any unique element that sets their films apart from expectations.

Unlike previous years, the 2024 shorts challenge seeks to broaden its theme, encouraging filmmakers to think beyond traditional norms while still producing live-action narrative or documentary films. The theme is designed to inspire originality, providing filmmakers with the freedom to explore the diverse possibilities of storytelling and filmmaking.

"We are excited to support new talent and fresh voices who are looking to break through in this challenging industry," said Patti White, cofounder and festival director. "The shorts challenge will provide filmmakers an opportunity to expand their experiences and break new ground."

Filmmakers are encouraged to embrace the theme and submit their groundbreaking stories for consideration no later than February 23. For more information on submission guidelines, visit the “Shorts Challenge” section at

The Annapolis Film Festival is grateful for the generous support and sponsorship of the shorts challenge by these industry-leading film companies: The Maryland Film Office, Red Star (Baltimore), Henninger Media, Studio Unknown (Baltimore)/The Sound Department (Los Angeles), and Serious Grip & Electric.

"We are thrilled to have the ongoing support of these outstanding companies as sponsors for the shorts challenge," said Lee Anderson, cofounder and festival director. "Their commitment to fostering the art of filmmaking here in Maryland aligns perfectly with our mission to provide a platform for filmmakers to showcase their original work."


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