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Neighbors of Kane County

2018 Elgin Short Film Festival – call for entries

Jun 22, 2018 08:52AM

Elgin, IL - Celebrating 10 years of excellence in short filmmaking, we’re excited to invite filmmakers to take part in the 10th Annual Elgin Short Film Festival (ESFF) taking place at The Hemmens Cultural Center in Elgin, IL on Saturday, September 22, 2018.  The ESFF has drawn film entries from around the world making this an impressive event that has entertained film lovers since 2009. We are currently inviting filmmakers to submit their short films (20 minutes in length) for competition in our festival.

Entries in our festival can only be up to 20 minutes long including credits. This competition will allow any filmmaker to submit work, even if it has been entered into other festival competitions!  We encourage submitting films in every genre and subject matter as long as they are within the scope of the official rules.

Exciting components to our festival:

  • The ESFF is excited to be working with Film Freeway again this year.  We’re thrilled to be member of a growing community of festival organizers who have brought artists together through thousands of events all around the world.  Filmmakers can submit their films via;
  • There are two categories for films to be entered.  The ESFF will feature a Live Action category and an Animation category. 
  • Next In Finalist - Each category will have five potential finalist.  The top two, as voted on by the selection committee, will make the finals.  The next three films in each category will compete to make the finals on September 15th as part of the Elgin Fringe Festival.
  • The Top Finalist’s films selected will be treated to a red carpet arrival the night of the festival and will be shown in the 1,200 seat theater of The Hemmens Cultural Center!
  • Films will be shown from the new digital projector inside the Hemmens Cultural Center.
  • 1st Prize: $1,000 plus trophy!
  • 2nd Prize: $500 plus trophy!
  • 3rd Prize: $300 plus trophy!
  • Mike Toomey, comedian and integral part of the WGN morning show, returns to MC our event.

The excitement for this 10th anniversary grows stronger every day. We encourage participation and look forward to receiving submission for the 2018 Elgin Short Film Festival.  The entry fee for films submitted by August 3, 2018 is $40. Films submitted after August 3, 2018 will have a $50 fee. The deadline to submit your film is August 24, 2018!

For a complete list of rules and regulations, and to download an application, go to:

Tickets to the film screening are $10 and may be purchased at The Hemmens Box Office, online at or by phone at 847-931-5900.

The Hemmens Cultural Center, located at the corner of Symphony Way and North Grove Avenue in Elgin, IL, is easily accessible from I-90. Parking is free.