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253 Short Film Competition

The 253 Short Film Competition welcomes emerging and established filmmakers of all ages to compete and create short films over a 72 hour period that will be celebrated with hundreds of people at a viewing party. Thank you to those who made films for our 2023 event, as well as to those in the sold out screening of the films May 18, 2023.  We'll open up registrations again in early March 2024, with filming to take place sometime in April 2024.

More details and team registration coming soon!

How it works: 

  • Register your team (or sign up as a solo filmmaker competitor) at The Grand's box office (only 31 teams can participate). 
  • All teams meet at The Grand to receive the year's four required criteria and the green light to begin filming.
    • Teams have 72 hours to write, shoot, and edit a short film.
    • Films must be no more than two-hundred and fifty-three seconds long (a nod to our area code).
    • Films must incorporate all four required elements.
  • Finalized projects are due at The Grand Cinema box office on the following Sunday night.
  • Judges review all films to determine multiple awards.
  • All submitted films are screened at the next 253 Short Film Party
  • Prizes are awarded for Jury and Audience favorites.


Team registration fee: $50 

What you get: 

  • Four tickets to the screening party 
  • Recognition at the screening party
  • Visibility for your creation before an audience of several hundred people
  • The opportunity to compete for the following additional recognition and prizes: 
    • Jury Award & $500 cash prize
    • Audience Choice Award & $500 cash prize
    • "Best Use" of one of the (4) required elements & $100 gift card to a local restaurant 
    • Best Emerging Filmmaker to a team/filmmaker participating for the first time
  • Opportunities to win additional prizes when you share snippets of your filming progress on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #253Seconds  
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