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How To Submit Your Short Film To The Oscars? Step By Step Explanation

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How To Submit Your Short Film To The Oscars? Step By Step Explanation

Since 1932, The ‘Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ is conducting a short film competition section in every year for honoring the crew of the best short films. The academy principally offers short film awards in two different categories, i.e. Best Animated Short Film and Best Live Action Short Film.

From 1930 to 1974, the category ‘Best Animated Short Film’ was known in the names ‘Short Subjects, Cartoons and Animated Films’. Similarly, from 1932 to 1974 the category ‘Best Live Action Short Film’ was known in the names ‘Live Action Films and Best Short Subject’

Burt Gillett’s Animated Short Film Flowers and Trees was the first Academy award won Short Film, This film was produced by Walt Disney Productions, and it was produced in the year 1932. Thereafter, on its every year Numerous Short and animated films won Oscar awards in diverse of categories.

We believe that, only 10% of Filmmakers are aware about the Genuine Short Film submission Process to Oscar Film Festival. Here, that is the reason why we are decided to write up briefly about this topic. Meanwhile, you have any questions; please ask to us through the comment section below.

Oscar Definitions

Short Film:

Any Genre of Film That has a Running Time of 40 Minutes or less is considered as Short Film.  Short Film Category in the Oscar competition section is divided into three- as Animated Short Film, Live Action Short Film and Documentary Short Subject.

Animated Short Film:

The film that is created by using the Computer Graphics is called as Animated Short Films. Filmmakers can submit their film either the Animated Documentary Short Subject category or Documentary Short Subject Category, but not both.

Live Action Short Film

Any Fictional Film that is filmed by using general Filmmaking techniques is categorized as Live Action Short Films. Documentary Short Subjects won’t be considered in the live action category.

 Documentary Short Subjects

Any Short nonfiction film that is dealing realistic subjects such as social, historical, economic, cultural, artistic subjects is categorized as Documentary short Subjects


1. The Academy decides the eligibility for the award consideration of Short Film, only if the film must fulfil one of the following qualifying criteria between the 1st date of last Year October to the 30st date of Current Year September.  It is also mandatory that the qualification must take place within the two years of film’s completion date.

a) The Short Film Must Have Been publicly exhibited (Paid Admission) in the cinema halls of Los Angeles Area for at least seven consecutive days with one screening at least in a day. Such publicly exhibited film must be shown either in 35mm or 70mm format,(or) in a 24 MM or 48 MM Frame Progressive Scan digital Cinema Format. The screen resolution of Projectors in the exhibited cinema halls will be of at least 2048 by 1080 pixels

The Output Video of Short Film Must Be in HD format, The Audio that integrated in that short film must be in a Typical Digital Cinema Package (DCP) is preferably 5.1 or 7.1 channels of discrete audio.  Also, the preferred minimum for a non-mono configuration of the audio shall be three channels i.e. Right, Centre and the Left.  The Academy also elucidated that, in Theatrical environment a left/Right Configuration is not acceptable.

The student categorized Films cannot qualify with a Theatrical Release,


b) In case the film haven’t yet displayed in a Cinema Hall or any public exhibitions, then the film must have won a qualifying award in any Competitive Film Festival that is officially affiliated to The Academy. Such a case, the Filmmaker or the Representative must submit a proof of received award along with the entry. Click here to find out the academy’s short film qualifying festival list.


c) The films that have won Medal award such as Gold, Silver or Bronze in the previous year of Academy’s Student Academy Award Competition in the categories of Narrative, Animation, Alternative or Foreign Film Category is also eligible for short film Submission.

  1. Winners In the Documentary Category are Not Eligible to Submit Their Short Film to the Oscar.
  2. The videos like Advertising (Commercially Purposed) films, Sequences from Feature Films, Unsold Episodically visualized TV series and Unaired TV series are not eligible for the submission
  3. Encrypted (Password Protected) films will not be accepted


  1. The academy accepts only the short film in the formats such as 35mm or 70mm, or as a DCP. Such a Work Print or DCP of the Short Film Must submit to the Selection committee of the Academy award consideration panel before the deadline.
  2. In Foreign Films (Non-English Speaking Films) English Subtitles must be included along with the original Sound track.
  3. Above the envelope of Films Prints or DCP’s covers must be marked “Short Film Entry” and it to be shipped to the address – the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, 8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211, before the deadline.
  4. Deadline for the Academy’s Short Film Submission will be on the first day of October


The academy will select the excellent short film on the basis of factors such as Story, Visualization, Sound Designing, Editing and cost of production.  Based on such factors, each of the academy members will rank each of the films as 10, 9, 8, 7, or 6 with the guidelines of 10 (excellent), 8 (good), 7 (fair) or 6 (poor). The finalists’  names will be determined from such overall rankings.

Submission Fees  

Nill, but the shipping expense Must manage by the submitter itself

When And Where

When: 1st week of March on Every Year

Where: Kodak Theatre 6801 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028
Level One of the Hollywood & Highland Center
p 323-308-6300

Submission Announcement

Submission Official Announcement: JUNE 24, 2013


Documentary Short Subject – 1st week Of September
Documentary Feature – End Of The Month September
Live Action Short Film — 1st week Of October
Animated Short Film — 1st week Of October

Competition Categories

  1. The Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film
  2. The Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film

Thanks for Reading; please let us know your opinions about this article, add your opinion in the comment box that enabled below. We will certainly respond to the relevant queries.



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  1. Santhosh

    July 24, 2015 at 12:14 am

    Hi am from india

    Iam doubt in procedure how much money i need to pay for admission ? Theatre show i dindt get? how can i send my short films to Academy from india?

    • FMF Resources

      July 24, 2015 at 4:52 pm

      Hi, Santosh Please read once again our article; we included all the informations in that:

      The one most needy thing for submitting a short film to Oscar is- your film Have Been publicly exhibited (Paid Admission) in the cinema halls of Los Angeles Area for at least seven consecutive days with one screening at least in a day, also there is no particular fee that associated with the submission for short film to oscars: follow this link for further info

      Hope This Info Helps you !

    • shubham

      November 22, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      hei same issue

  2. Valerie

    August 19, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    I was just looking at your How To Submit Your Short Film To The Oscars? Step By Step Explanation – Filmmakers Fans website and see that your website has the potential to become very popular.

  3. Agin

    November 15, 2015 at 9:18 am

    Wishes from Great Information Filmmakersfans, also i’d like to recommend to publish articles related to how to submit a documentary to the oscars, feature film etc .

  4. Shamy

    June 1, 2016 at 12:17 am

    what are the Competitive Film Festival that is officially affiliated to The Academy ?

  5. sandip polley

    January 29, 2017 at 9:19 am

    Hi…can I sent my short film in this year of march?? I need to do my film and sent to that above address which u mentioned….please tell me this is enough procedure for submitting my film??

    • FMF Resources

      January 29, 2017 at 11:34 am

      Did yOU Read the Article Wholly?

  6. Manjunath

    January 30, 2017 at 1:50 am

    Hello myself manjunath kesaralli

    I would like to ask u some queries
    If I have completed my short movie and won any awards I m aligible for Oscar’s but I didn’t understood that how to send our short movie for screening for 7 consecutive days in cinema halls of low Angeles is the screening mandatory please send the reply for my mail I’d I m waiting for your reply plz revert back

  7. Abdulla Bawasa

    February 28, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    Hi, I have made a short film with my DSLR and I would like to submit my film to international film festivals. And may be to Oscar. I just want to know, do I need to start a production company to submit films to festivals? Or can I submit my films as an individual? Please reply. Thanks


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