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FiveFest Guidelines


Hlabeard Productions, in collaboration with the SATO48 Film Challenge, presents “FiveFest”—a dynamic festival dedicated to celebrating the art of short films with a maximum length of five minutes. 

Submission Guidelines

1. Film Duration and Content

  • Films must be exactly 5 minutes or less in length including credits. You are not allowed to upload a file that is longer than 5 minutes in duration. 

  • Non-English dialogue films must include English subtitles or be dubbed in English.

  • Do not upload works in progress. Uploaded films must be complete and theater-projection ready. 

  • The film’s genre must be one of the following five: Animation, Comedy, Drama, Horror, Musical.

2. Technical Requirements

  • The minimum resolution is 720p. 

  • Submitted films must have clear audio quality.

  • A film Poster and any other Promotional Materials are encouraged (though not required) to be uploaded.

3. Eligibility

  • Open to all filmmakers, regardless of age, region, production date of film, or content within specified genres.

4. Submission Process

  • Films, Posters (if available), and Promotional Materials (if available) are submitted digitally via SATO48 Festival Manager (link).

  • Entry fee: US$25 per film (subject to change).

  • Submission opens January 17, 2024, and closes on a date to be announced.

  • All fees are non-refundable and non-transferable. 


Judging and Awards

5. Judging Panel

  • A select group of industry professionals and esteemed members of the filmmaking community will judge the entries. 

  • Registered team members from last year’s SATO48-Challenge are automatically opted IN and therefore may participate as Academy Judges if they so elect.

6. Prizes

Best Animation: $100

Best Comedy: $100

Best Drama: $100

Best Horror: $100

Best Musical: $100

Venue and Event Details

7. Festival Locations (depending on needed capacity)

  • Moxie Cinema

  • Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

  • Gillioz Arts & Entertainment Center

  • Springfield Studio 1


8. FiveFest Programming

  • All films are accepted into FiveFest, as follows:

  • Accepted films will receive a FiveFest Scorecard detailing, in the aggregate, how the Academy Judges responded to their film and an exclusive month-long online screening.

  • Some films will be selected for (a) an in-theater screening at a Festival Location, and (b) acknowledged as a Nominee at the Recognition & Awards Ceremony.

  • The winning film in each genre — for whom a representative of the film is present and checked in at the Awards Ceremony — receives the following: 

    • Prize money

    • Statuette

    • On-stage acceptance speech opportunity

    • Backstage interview


9. Notification of Your Acceptance Level

  • You are notified via email of your film’s Acceptance Level.

10. FiveFest Dates To Save

  • January 17, 2024 — Submission opens. The submission closing date is on a date to be announced.

  • Wednesday, May 29, to Sunday, June 2, 2024 — In-theater screening, if applicable to your film, takes place at a date/time to be determined by capacity of Festival Locations.

  • Saturday, June 1, 2024 — Recognition & Awards Ceremony at the Gillioz Theater.

  • June 3 to July 1, 2024 — Online viewing, applicable to all films, takes place.

Legal Terms and Conditions

11. Film Rights

  • Entrant must own all rights to their film and its content.

  • All Entrants grant Hlabeard Productions and SATO48:

  •  In-theater screening and paywall online usage rights for the duration of SATO48-2024 FiveFest (end date: July 2, 2024).

  • Free online usage rights within Festival Manager and promotional usage rights in perpetuity.

  • Entrant holds Hlabeard Productions, SATO48, and all other parties connected to SATO48, harmless in all respects.


12. Endorsement

  • Participation in FiveFest by Entrant is not an endorsement by Hlabeard Productions, nor SATO48, of the film’s content.

13. Liability

  • Hlabeard Productions and SATO48 are not liable for any losses or damages incurred for any reason by Entrant.

14. Cancellation & Delays

  • In case of unavoidable cancellations or delays, efforts will be made to reschedule. No liability by Hlabeard Productions nor SATO48 is assumed for losses incurred due to such cancellations.

Accessibility and Inclusion


15. Accessibility

  • FiveFest venues are wheelchair accessible.

16. Inclusion

  • FiveFest is committed to diversity and inclusion.


Contact Information

17. Inquiry Handling


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