top of page


What Does Makes The World a Better Place?

The 2018 FOCUS Children's International Film Festival screens only ANIMATED short films (cartoons) that answer the Festival theme's question: "What Does Make the World a Better Place?" We accept animated short Films MADE (CREATED AND DIRECTED) BY YOUNG AMATEUR (meaning those who doesn't get paid for their work) FILMMAKERS ONLY (younger than 16 YEARS OLD). Including opening and closing credits, Films must be less than 3 min. in length for children up to 10 years old, and less than 5 min for 11-15 year olds. The Festival is held at the York Woods Library Theatre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on September 1, 2018. Early Bird Deadline for submissions is June 1. Final Deadline for submissions is July 10, 2018 5 pm. Eastern time Canada and USA. The earlier you submit your film, the more chances you have to be selected as a Finalist (simply because we have a quota of how many films we can include in the final screenings)! The Finalists will be announced on/or before August 1, 2018. The Winners and the Honourable Mention recipients will be chosen by an International Jury on the Day of The Festival. Audience Choice Awards will be awarded by the audience in the Theatre after the screening. Submissions are welcome from Young Filmmakers from all over the world.

The 2018 FOCUS Children's International Film Festival's awards are given for Best Short Animated Film in the age category up to 10 y.o., Audience Choice Award in the age category up to 10 y.o., Best Short Animated Film in the age category 11-15 y.o., Audience Choice Award in the age category 11-15 y.o. These awards have monetary value (Canadian Dollars). Also, Medals and Honourable mention certificates (no money attached) will be given to short animated film in the age category up to 10 y.o. and 11-15 y.o. Winning Films and other selected entries (Finalists) will be screened at the Festival in front of film professionals, Festival's guests and general public. All Films-Finalists receive a Certificate of Official Selection.  
The FOCUS Children's International Film Festival was founded in 2016 by a non-profit organization FOCUS School of Theatre, Arts and Filmmaking and DASH Productions Inc. to highlight children's love for Film and Creativity, as well as to give a possibility to amateur young filmmakers to showcase their work in front of not only their parents and peers but also in front of general public and film professionals. In 2017, we received more than 200 entries and have showcased 22 films-finalists from 9 countries: Canada, USA, Brasil, Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Croatia, Kyrgyzstan, Iran. The intent of the FOCUS Children's International Film Festival is to demonstrate a child's take on the important things in our lives as well as to emphasize the power of animated film in communicating about What Makes the World a Better Place. 
There is NO CHARGE (it's free) to submit a Film to the FOCUS Children's International Film Festival, however, if possible, a small donation to our non-profit organization will be greatly appreciated and is going to be used to support the training and skill development of children and young adults in the art of communicating via Film.

Toronto is a vibrant, thriving, multicultural community with a strong tradition of support for the arts. Young Filmmakers from any country and culture are welcome to submit their Films. 

Awards & Prizes

Best Short Animated Film (Age Category up to 10 y.o.) - CAD $100.00 + Certificate 
Best Short Animated Film (Age Category 11-15 y.o.) - CAD $100.00 + Certificate 
Audience Choice Award  (Age Category up to 10 y.o.) - CAD$50.00 + Certificate 
Audience Choice Award (Age Category 11-15 y.o.) - CAD$50.00 + Certificate 
Honourable Mention (Age Category up to 10 y.o) - Medal + Certificate 
Honourable Mention (Age Category up to 11-15 y.o) - Medal + Certificate

Rules & Terms

Rules & Terms 
By submitting an entry (“Film”) in the FOCUS Children's International Film Festival ("FCIFF"), entrant (“Filmmaker”) acknowledges and agrees to all the following Rules: 
- A Young Filmmaker is the one who has not reached his/her 16th birthday on September 1, 2018. 

- On behalf of the Filmmaker, entries must be submitted over e-mail: by a legal Parent/Guardian of the Filmmaker and has a Release form signed and attached to it as a .pdf file.  
- At the time of submission, a link (and a password, if required) must be provided in the same e-mail for us to view the Film (vimeo, youtube) as a part of the selection process. If selected as a Finalist, a FULL HD 1080p NTSC screening copy of the Film must be submitted for exhibition (.mov [ProRes] .mp4) via dropbox or similar file transfer provider. 
- Theme: The competition is open to short animated Films that answer the Festival theme's question: "What Does Make the World a Better Place?"

- Film Categories:  
Age Category up to 10 y.o: Short Animated Film less than 3 minutes in length.  
Age Category 11-15 y.o.: Short Animated Film less than 5 minutes in length.  
Running time should include all credits. Films can be created by one Filmmaker or a group of Filmmakers.

- Judging Criteria: Artistic Merit and Filmmaker's Storytelling Ability. 

- Film Language: Films that are not in English must be subtitled or dubbed in English.

- License to FCIFF:  
Submission of Your Film gives FCIFF, FOCUS School and DASH Production Inc. permission to use segments of the Film and other submitted information, including but not limited to Filmmaker's name and Stills, for marketing, promotion, and publicity purposes.

- Ownership by Filmmaker: By submitting a Film, Filmmaker affirmatively states that he/she/they own the copyright to all materials in the Film; and/or have obtained all necessary licenses to all materials, of whatever kind, in the Film of which he/she/they do not own the copyright; and, he/she/they have obtained necessary releases from all persons that appear or can be heard in the Film, or in the event such person is under the age of majority, from their legal guardian.

- Filmmaker Authority: Filmmaker affirmatively states that he/she/they have the authority to, and by submitting a Film, in fact, authorize FCIFF to screen the Film without any monetary remuneration to the Filmmaker. Proceeds, if any, from the screening of the Film in front of general public will be used to cover the Festival costs at the Festival's discretion. 
- Breach by Filmmaker: Filmmaker assumes all liability for violations of copyright, licenses, privacy laws in the state/country where the Film was shot, or made, or violations of or compliance with any agreement whatsoever.  
- Reliance by FCIFF: FCIFF will rely upon Filmmaker’s affirmative statements made by submitting the Film relating to copyright, licenses, releases, and any agreements. Filmmaker releases FCIFF from any and all claims and liabilities with respect to publicizing, screening, or cablecasting the Film, regardless of when such claim is made or liability arises. 


bottom of page