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Welcome back! After pausing for three years due to the pandemic, we're excited to announce that The Short Cinema Film Festival is returning, hosted once again at Leicester's Phoenix Cinema. Our festival has always been a home for both established and up-and-coming filmmakers from around the world, with a special focus on supporting the talent right here in the Midlands.

The Short Cinema is all about bringing a diverse array of short films to our audience, regardless of their genre, style, or budget. It's a place where writers, producers, and directors have the opportunity to share their work on the big screen in front of an audience that appreciates good storytelling and cinematic craftsmanship.

More than just screenings, the festival is a chance for creators to meet, talk about their projects, and connect with the wider Midlands filmmaking community. We believe in the power of networking and collaboration, and our festival provides the perfect environment for both.

Over the past eighteen years, The Short Cinema has evolved from a small local event to a significant date on the Midlands’ cultural calendar while still keeping its grassroots ethos. Our goal has always been to grow and support the local film scene, providing opportunities for filmmakers to showcase their work and celebrate the art of the short film.

In addition to our annual festival, we've teamed up with Phoenix Cinema to create The Short Cinema: Show & Tell. This quarterly event is designed specifically for Midlands-based filmmakers to present their work, network with peers, and gather feedback on their projects.

We're proud of what The Short Cinema has become and excited for what the future holds. Whether you're a filmmaker looking to share your work, or a film lover eager to see fresh and engaging stories, we invite you to join us. Let's continue to support and celebrate the rich tapestry of short filmmaking together.




We at The Short Cinema have a demonstrable commitment to celebrating talent, tackling underrepresentation, and creating a safe, supportive environment.


We work with partners and national organisations to try to create a programme reflective of our community and encourage talent from underrepresented groups to take up space in our programme. We realise this will take time to embed, but enough small steps eventually turn into great leaps.

If the submission fee presents a financial barrier, please get in touch to request a waiver code.


We do our very best, but we're a small group of volunteer creatives with limited resources, and we know the best way to uphold our commitment is to be open, responsive and listen to the feedback of our audiences, so if you have any feedback or advice on how we can continue to deliver the festival in line with our ethos, please get in touch via




We are an international film festival with a proud local history and a dedication to showcasing great talent in the Midlands region, the UK, and around the world.


We are really keen on the planet, so we try to keep our festival as environmentally friendly as possible. In 2019, we decided to do away with gift bags in favour of using the money we would have spent on these on additional programming.


We try to work with local providers and freelancers to return the money we spend on the festival to the local community and support our region's creative economy. 

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