Rules and Regulations 2017

Rules and Regulations 2017

You hereby grant the Dublin International Short Film and Music Festival all rights necessary to exhibit and promote the above-referenced film at the 2017 Festival if the film is selected. You represent that such exhibition will not violate or infringe upon any rights whatsoever (including copyright, trademark, musical or contract right) of any person or entity. You further represent that you are authorized to submit the above-referenced film. Additionally, you indemnify the Festival from any and all claims, demands, losses, costs, damages, and attorney’s fees arising out of or in connection with third parties in regard to the screening of the film mentioned above.

Submission fee: €15

Festival Dates: 06-08 October

General Rules

Films that have been produced after 1 January 2014
Projects may originate anywhere in the world, but either the dialogue OR the subtitles must be in English.
No premiere requirements.
All filmmakers pay the same entry fee. No student discounts or waivers. All entry fees are non-refundable.
We will accept films of nearly every type and style, such as music videos, documentaries, horror, comedy, narrative stories, drama… etc, with the following restrictions: No unfinished, in-progress, or rough cut projects will be accepted by our judges.
We will accept ONE VERSION of your entry only. We will NOT accept “updated” cuts such as “new sound mix”, “new effects added”, etc.
Entries must be received by 1th of August 2017
Entries should not exceed 35 minutes in duration excluding titles provided the titles don’t last for more than 1 extra minute.
I agree that DISFMF can do up to 2 screening during the festival.
The Festival may use excerpts from competition films (up to 10% of the length of the film, but no more than three minutes) to promote the Festival on television and the Internet.
The number of entries by one author is not limited.
Films that promote violence, race, and religion or gender discrimination or contain explicit drug advertisement are barred from the Festival programme.
A film that has been applied cannot be withdrawn from the festival, unless the Festival management decides otherwise.

Screening copy: MP4 or MOV in h264 codec!


Filmbase Filmrace

Filmbase Filmrace

Being a film student is awful. I’ve been one, and it’s a wonder I didn’t end up in hospital with a stomach ulcer from worry. While other students may feel their lot is bad, nothing, NOTHING is as poor as the lot of a film student. You attend class, talks, workshops, do the necessary assignments, oh and yeah-make a film or two. Now that doesn’t sound so bad, I know. But it is. A film, a feature film is a faceless monster on any occasion. But for a student, well…to be frank…it’s a mind screw,

First, you must get a hold and grasp of the basics; script, camera, lights, sound: then comes casting, costumes, equipment, locations, sets, safety regulations, rights, accounts, catering, transport, VFX, editing…oh and one other little thing, that floats the whole circus, money. That last one, right there, is what keeps a film student panicking.

Who will fund your film? And let you make and control it, the way you want? Film isn’t like other college projects or exercises. Like many it requires immense teamwork, creative communication, long hours, but how many projects, require the student to find the cash to fund the work? Film making is an expensive business, and sometimes educational institutions need a helpful wallet.

And so, the students from Filmbase, find themselves in a ‘Filmrace’. The aim of the game is to raise 25,000 euros to make two feature films. The first, is Poison Pen, written by the international best-selling author of the Artemis Fowl books, Eoin Colfer. It’s a romantic comedy that deals with love, vanity, and deception. PC Molloy, a has-been literary master, is blackmailed into working for a tabloid gossip magazine. Cultures clash and sparks fly as the cerebral Molloy reluctantly becomes the celebrity interviewer for vain celebrities. Will Molloy be seduced by the trappings of fame or will he be seduced by April Devereux, the fiery editor of Poison Pen?

The second feature, Light of Day is a mocumentary set against the backdrop of low-budget horror filmmaking. Written by Filmbase graduate, Chris Brennan, Light of Day follows the doomed crew of First Bite is The Deepest – a cheap vampire flick as they struggle to make their film. With an inept director, world-weary producer, meddlesome writer, star with a peanut allergy and the worst product placement deals in history there’s more horror behind the scenes than in the film. The only hope their film will ever see the light of day rests in the hands of Michael and Sarah, the only two sane people on the production.

Both films are part of the Filmbase MSc Digital Feature Film Production course. The aim is to create two industry standard productions that will boost the future careers of the students involved. Filmbase has gone on similar such ventures in the past with Keys to the City and How to be Happy both produced on the course in previous years. Both films sold out festival screenings worldwide and are securing distribution deals. The latter How To Be Happy, I saw screened at the Galway Film Fleadh last summer. It gleaned rave reviews from audiences and extra screenings had to be scheduled. No easy task with 30 degree sunshine outside, and no air conditioning in sight.

Needless to say the productions from Filmbase have an excellent track record in quality and success. All that’s holding the students back is funding. So, fancy opening that helpful wallet of yours, to educate the next generation of Irish filmmakers? Who knows, they might take over RTÉ someday, and show ‘em a thing or two.

If you are interested in supporting their project, please visit

There are great rewards for anyone wishing to help out and more will be added to the list. If you’d like to support the project but would prefer to help out in other ways, please contact Alan Fitzpatrick at Filmbase (

Check out facebook and twitter for regular updates on the campaign.

Any thoughts? Email me at

Lorna Buttimer. Follow me on twitter @buttimer_lorna



The following is a list of suggestions which you may heed or ignore as you see fit. Mostly, it’s a list of elements we’ve seen many times, and if something has been done many times, it would be worth your while to find a new way to do it. If you’re thinking of making a short film, you will most likely want to find ways to set yourself apart, or at least to avoid cliches or mistakes made by others. No park benches No cafes No establishing shots—Specifically, don’t start a scene with a shot of whatever building the characters are in. This is not The Golden Girls. If you want to establish the location, try doing it creatively, within the action of the scene No random shots of things that are in the location. Some people seem to think this is what a “cutaway” is. If there is no reason to cut to something, don’t. Leave it alone. It’s fine for setting the scene, but not if you’re just trying to add variety to what’s on screen. No scenes where the protagonist stares at him/herself in the mirror No shakycam unless it’s for a particular emotional reaction No Reservoir Dogs knock offs (I’m amazed that people are still making these, but they are. It’s great that you want to emulate your hero, but it’s been done. Maybe instead of referencing movies you like, you should try remaking the movies you hate. That would at least be a bit more creative). No Amelie knock offs (See above—I swear there’s at least one storybook-style magic realist riff at every festival) No Wes Anderson knock offs (See above—I love Wes Anderson, but really, all you’re saying is “I love Wes Anderson”) No covering entire scenes from multiple angles, especially if it’s just a dialogue scene. Pay attention to the sound. Even if the sound design isn’t anything special, it’s still better than bad sound, which is awful and makes a film seem completely amateurish. Film is indeed a visual medium, but that doesn’t just mean take out the dialogue. It means use images, actions, and edits to tell your story. But also, use dialogue, sound and music. You have all these tools at your disposal—make the most of them. No stories about writers. There are many, many professions out there that are far more interesting visually. No stories about writers with writer’s block, who discover a Muse who inspires him (It’s always a him) to write a story that’s basically the film we just watched. Just, please. Especially if the Muse is sacrificed in the process. No films about film-making. It is, however, totally OK to make your film a metaphor for filmmaking. Try to avoid the kind of short that’s just a set-up and a pay-off, where most of it is just illustrating a situation rather than telling a story until the twist happens. If you must make it, keep it short. And maybe find a second twist. People always expect a twist in a short film, they might be surprised by a second one. No films about serial killers.

By Tim Hanan

Irish Film Festivals

Irish Film Festivals

To start the new year off with a bang, here’s a list of Irish, and Irish-themed, film festivals that—although they’re not this one—still have their merits.  Some are more focused on shorts than others (ADIFF, for example is more of a feature film festival, so sending something independent in on spec is taking a big chance). Some are also more focused on documentaries or animation, or have themes that may not be appropriate for your own work.  Finally, remember to be kind to your wallet and keep an eye out for Early Bird deadlines.


Belfast Film Festival

Capital Irish Film Festival (Solas Nua)

Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival

Chicago Irish Film Festival

Clones Film Festival


Darklight Festival

Dingle Film Festival

Dublin International Film Festival

Dublin Animation Film Festival

Dublin Web Fest

Fastnet Film Festival

Feminist Film Festival

Fingal Film Festival

Fresh Film Festival

Foyle Film Festival

Galway Film Fleadh


Guth Gafa

IFI Festivals


Kerry Film Festival

Limerick Film Festival

London Irish Film Festival

OFFLine Film Festival

The Richard Harris International Film Festival

San Francisco Irish Film Festival

Shebeen Flick

Silk Road Film Festival

Stranger Than Fiction

Underground Cinema

Waterford Film Festival

Dublin International Short Film and Music Festival

PS If there’s any we missed, please feel free to add them in the comments.

Written By Tim Hanan

DISFMF 2016 Winners

DISFMF 2016 Winners

Winners 2016



Best Director, Gui Campos, Rosinha, Brazil
Best Producer, Savio Sequeira & Anthony Renwick Mc Gill, The Job Paradox, Ireland
Best Script, Maurice O’Connel, Proclaim, Ireland
Best Music Video, Veto By Son Directed by Abderrezak Chriette, Germany
Best Cinematography, Sam Heasman, Miracle On Canary Wharf, Directed by Bradley Porter, UK
Best Edit, Gurmmeet Singh, All I Want, Directed by Venika Mitra, India
Best Animation, Little Flower, Directed by Brigette Heffernan, Ireland
Best Sound Design, Livia Rusic & Keith Thomas, Silence, Directed by Dejan Mrkic, Australia
Best Student Short, Ella, Directed by Damian Madden , Ireland
Best Music/Score, Martina Walker, Elga Fox, Melanie Hoskin, Staged, Directed by Sonya Mulligan and Rachel Gregan/ Ireland
Best Actor, Graham Earley, Numb, Directed by Dara McConnell, Ireland
Best Actress, Olga Skvortsova, Call It As You Wish, Directed by Kiryl Halitsky, Belarus
Best Documentary, Code Therapy, Directed by Divya Pathak, UK
Best Irish Short, Leave, Directed by Mike Hayes