The Horsham Film Festival opens for entries

The Horsham Film Festival, which returned to an in-person event for 2022, will be partnering again with the Everyman Cinema for 2023.

Director Geoff Cockwill promised “more ticketed shortlisted film screenings and, of course, the awards night.” Geoff explained: “The Horsham Film Festival is now in its fifth year, having started in 2019 as part of the Horsham District Year of Culture and then running again in 2020 before going virtual for 2021 and then returning for 2022. We’re thrilled to be back and to be partnered with the best cinema in the area to screen the best short films around! But before we can do that, we need to get some films in! The Horsham Film Festival 2023 – or HFF23 as we’re calling it – is open for submissions. To enter a film, filmmakers need to head to FilmFreeway and submit there -

“The festival has two age groups for filmmakers to choose to enter into: there’s the Over 18s and Student groups. The Student group is for filmmakers under 18 or those still studying. Proof of student status will need providing when you submit a film. There are five categories to enter films into - Best Drama, Best Documentary, Best Comedy and Best Animation. Films can be entered into these categories from anyone, anywhere in the country. The fifth and final category is the Your District Award which goes to a film of any genre in each age group that was filmed in (fully or partly) or is about the Horsham District/West Sussex. Please only enter films made within West Sussex into this category. Films will be accepted up to 15 minutes in length.

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“For 2023, we are introducing a new category in partnership with the Horsham District Council Economic Development team – the Best Business Video award. This category is open to businesses in the Horsham District and will give us a chance to recognise and award those businesses creatively using video in their marketing and showing how it has benefitted them.

"Entry into the festival via FilmFreeway comes with a flat-rate submission fee all the way through to our submission deadline on September 22. Over 18 and Business entries cost £12 and students are free to enter.”

This year, HFF23 films will be judged by director Geoff Cockwill from Silvertip Films who will be joined by Pete Levy, producer on Doctor Who and Casualty who will bring his extensive industry experience to the panel, plus Rebecca Moon (head of BTEC creative media) and Stuart Andrews (head of film studies) from Collyers College in Horsham who will add their experience and knowledge of working with young filmmakers.

Submission deadline: September 22; judging decisions made: October 13; awards night: late Nov/early Dec. Submissions accepted via Filmfreeway –

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It’s open to anyone from anywhere to enter any category except for the Your District award which is for films made in/about the Horsham district and West Sussex area and the Best Business Video award which is for Horsham district businesses.

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