How to enter

Step 1 - Brainstorm

Create your idea

The first step in the film making process is growing your story idea.

If you're stuck for ideas, think about the festival theme. How did the COVID-19 pandemic impact on you and your friends? How do you see the future after COVID? Brainstorm with your friends and jot down your ideas and run them by family or friends to get their feedback.


Develop your script

Once you have settled on your idea, the next step is to create a script. Think of your storyline, write your script, storyboard and plan what you're going to film. For a 1-3 minute film, the maximum number of script pages should be three. This is based on a general rule of 1 page = 1 minute, but can differ depending on how much dialogue you plan to include in your film.

If you need help writing your script, have a look at YouTube video by Videomaker – Practical Advice for Writing a Short Film.   



Step 2 - Shoot

Think about what equipment you will need.

If you don’t have access to a video camera to shoot your film, don’t be discouraged. You can put together a film on your smartphone. Some great short films have been shot using a smart phone.

Create your storyboard

You can download free templates online or start by drawing a series of boxes on a piece of paper. In each box sketch your scenes and give consideration to how close you’ll be to the subject, their position and the angle you’re shooting from.

Stick figures will work just fine if drawing isn’t your strong suit, but remember to draw in all of your props. You can then add notes under each scene about location, script, camera movements, etc. The storyboard can be as detailed as you like and will be a useful tool when you start filming.

Chase Me Films - How to Create a Storyboard for Your Video Shoot


Get out there and shoot your film

To get the perfect shot or enhance the mood of a scene, experiment with your camera settings instead of relying on automatic settings. When filming outdoors, shoot with the sunlight behind you. To get creative with your scenes, mix up the angles and level that you film from. Be wary of filming in noisy locations, such as near busy roads, as this can be recorded in your audio and make it hard to hear dialogue. Keep your camera steady and if possible use a tripod to avoid shaky video.

Have a look in the resource section for some handy tips.

If you are filming on a smart phone, you can shoot in either portrait or landscape orientation but make sure it’s consistent and keep the camera steady to avoid blurriness. There are some great filmmaking apps for smart phone such as iphone iMovie which is available free for download. 

Make sure you complete a Still and Moving Image Release form(PDF, 67KB) for any people you film including members of the public.


Step 3 - Edit

Download and review your raw footage and edit your film.

Editing is an important part of the film making process. You can purchase editing programs such as AVS Video Editor or Adobe Premier Pro but there are also some free programs you can download such as Windows Movie Maker, Lightworks or Wondershare Filmora.

If you’ve filmed your entry on a smartphone, you might want to try some free apps like iMovie, PowerDirector or Movie Edit Touch.

Don’t forget that your final submission for the festival should be in 1920 x 1080 MP4 file format and 1GB maximum.




Step 4 - Submit

Once your film is ready to go, package it up and submit it online. 

Before you submit, have you included?

  • Evidence of Status of live, work or study in the Town.
  • Evidence of age.
  • Image Release form for all people appearing in the film.
  • Licence/permission for any music, footage used in the film.
  • Obtain parents/Guardian consent if under 18 years of age

Submissions closed 31 October 2020.




Your submission should meet the following criteria: 

  • Film must fit/follow the theme– Regeneration' – Out the other side”
  • Films are to be  G or PG rated (no graphic violence, profanity or mature content)
  • Be no more than 5 minutes long including credits.
  • Be submitted in 1920 x 1080 mp4 file format and 1GB maximum size.
  • Films are to be produced in 2020.
  • Films to be live action, animated or a mixture of both.
  • Have completed an Image Release Approval (PDF, 67KB) forms for any people featured in the film.
  • Have obtained licence/written permission to showcase all voices, footage and soundtracks in the film.
  • Includes a short synopsis (max 100 words) about your film
  • You are aged between 12-25 years old
  • You live, work or study in the Town of Cambridge
  • Individual or group entries accepted provided that one person in the group lives, works or attends school in The Town.
  • Download the full Terms and Conditions(PDF, 94KB)


evidence.jpg Evidence of Status and Age

At least one member of your group must live, work or study in the Town of Cambridge. In your submission you must include evidence which relates to you:

Live: Address of residence and contact number.

Work: Business name, employer name and contact number

Study: Letter from a teacher or principal confirming enrolment.

Age: I.D showing proof of age



'Regeneration - Out the other side' is the theme for the 2020 Cambridge Short Film Festival.

The theme encourages future generations to reflect on their experience during the COVID-19 pandemic and what it looks like on the other side. 

This is inspired by the unique experiences and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on young people and offers a chance to explore these experiences and envision the future post-pandemic. 

Film-makers are encouraged to use their creativity and imagination to weave elements of this theme into their film.