TIFF is proud to announce the return of the TIFFxInstagram Shorts Festival, TIFF’s digital short film competition. Beginning today, aspiring filmmakers from around the world can submit their pint-sized films for consideration. Finalists will have the unique opportunity to have their films judged by a panel of A-list film and industry professionals, including some of today’s top filmmakers and actors. To enter, submit a 60-second-or-less film on Instagram using the hashtag #TIFFxInstagram and complete the submission form at tiff.net/shortsfestival. The deadline for submissions is July 30. Entries must be submitted from an open Instagram account and accounts must remain open until August 21. The TIFFxInstagram Shorts Festival is presented by UNIQLO.
The inaugural 2016 competition saw entrants from regions all over the world, including submissions from Asia, Africa and the Americas. During the festival’s run, finalists’ videos were viewed over 4 million times in just 11 short days. Last year’s TIFFxInstagram produced Fan Favorite Award winner, Tunisia’s Mohamed Abdallah for Hope, and Jury’s Choice Award winner, the Dominican Republic’s Ivan Herrera for La Pasión Original. Since their wins, Herrera and Abdallah have had continued success, including Herrera’s work on the music video for John Legend’s “Love Me Now” alongside 2016 TIFFxInstagram Shorts Festival jury member, photographer and director Nabil Elderkin. The victory of Abdallah’s Hope was a step in a series of events that led to its subject, breakdancer Zulu Rema, receiving new prosthetic legs earlier this year.
“TIFF remains committed to discovering and nurturing the talent of up-and-coming filmmakers,” said Piers Handling, Director and CEO of TIFF. “The TIFFxInstagram Shorts Festival presents a unique opportunity for TIFF to engage with emerging talent on a global scale. This year, we hope TIFFxInstagram encourages even more talent internationally to create and submit films, highlighting perspectives and experiences from around the world.”
“More than 700 million people come to Instagram to connect with a positive, highly engaged community where they can express their creativity, connect around shared interests and be inspired. Creators can build deep relationships with their followers, understand their engagement, and find new fans who love their work,” said Charles Porch, Head of Global Creative Programs at Instagram. “Through our collaboration with TIFF, we’ll once again celebrate the craft of short filmmaking through the TIFFxInstagram Shorts Festival.”
30 finalists will be selected and highlighted on TIFF’s Instagram channel from August 9 to 20, before a jury comprised of industry professionals and filmmakers selects a winner for the Jury’s Choice Award Presented by UNIQLO. In addition, a Fan Favourite Award Presented by UNIQLO will be awarded to the entrant film with the most likes on Instagram.
The award winners will receive a trip to Toronto to attend the Toronto International Film Festival this September to have a chance to network with the film community at the popular Industry Conference and see a selection of exciting film premieres. Winners will also have their short films showcased on TIFF and Instagram’s digital channels.
This year’s esteemed judging panel consists of French actress and Academy Award nominee Isabelle Huppert (La Cérémonie, Elle) (@isabelle.huppert); actor Ashton Sanders (Moonlight) (@ashtondsanders); Canadian music video director Director X (Hotline Bling, Get Busy) (@idirectorx); John C. Jay, President, Global Creative, at Fast Retailing, parent company of UNIQLO (@john_c_jay) and Indian directing and producing powerhouse Karan Johar (Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, My Name Is Khan) (@karanjohar).
More judges will be announced in the coming weeks at tiff.net/shortsfestival.