Cinematic Tokyo Competition Submission Guidelines

We are calling for short films that take "Tokyo" as their subject, and which show the many attractions that Tokyo has to offer. The competition winner will receive 1,000,000 JPY! We are not only looking for films that take place in Tokyo, but also for films that depict memories of Tokyo, impressions of Tokyo, or even shops in overseas locations that offer an experience of "Tokyo". Please send us your “Tokyo” themed submissions!

Filmmakers on the red carpet
Q&A sessions following screenings

Submission Period

August 1, 2018 - January 31, 2019 (via Shortfilmdepot, Withoutabox or FilmFreeway)
*Submissions must be postmarked by the last day of the submission period, and you must upload the movie file or send us the DVD screener before January 31, 2019. No exceptions will be made.


1. Theme: “Tokyo”
“Tokyo” must feature in the film. You do not have to show the real Tokyo or even shoot in Tokyo, and depictions can be based on your imagination or fiction.
Examples: Films shot in and around Tokyo
Films depicting locations or objects based on the image of “Tokyo”
Films depicting Tokyo 100 years from now

2. Japan Premiere
Not required

3. Genre: Any
All genres are accepted.

4. Running Time
25 minutes or under. No exceptions. Running time includes end credits.

5. Production Year
Not specified

6. Production Country
All. The festival committee will determine the production country based on the following criteria: director’s nationality, shooting location, language of the film, nationality of cast and source of funding.

7. Language
English subtitles are required for submissions with languages other than English or Japanese.

8. Formats
NTSC/PAL DVD or movie file. Please note that if selected, filmmakers are required to provide an Apple ProRes File or NTSC HDCAM.


Best Short Award: 1,000,000 Japanese Yen

(1) For any inquiries regarding shooting in Tokyo for this competition, feel free to contact the Tokyo Location Box (
(2) Materials available on the Tokyo Stock Footage website can be used for this competition for free.
Note 1: Except Zojoji Temple, Sensoji Temple and Roppongi Hills
Note 2: Please make sure to include “Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau” in the credits.


1) Please complete the online submission either via Shortfilmdepot (, Withoutabox ( or FilmFreeway (

To submit your film, you’ll first be requested to create an account and then register your film. For more details, please refer to the specific instructions for the chosen online platform (Shortfilmdepot, Withoutabox, Filmfreeway) after you have read the submission guidelines thoroughly.

2) Upload the movie file to the website (Shortfilmdepot, Withoutabox, Filmfreeway) or send your Submission Receipt together with an NTSC or PAL DVD of your completed film to the mailing address below.

Please note:
# DVD screeners will not be returned.
# Works in progress will not be considered.
# If you are submitting more than one film, you may include them all on one DVD, but please write each title clearly on the DVD, and remember to complete separate online submissions for each film.
*Please DO NOT send press kits or any other materials with your submission. Any extra materials will be discarded.


Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2019
Cinematic Tokyo Competition
4F SSU Bldg. 4-12-8
Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku
Tokyo 151-0051 Japan

*The applicant is responsible for expenses related to the submission, including shipment of screener DVDs.
*Regular mail or EMS is preferred for shipping.
*All international shipments must be marked with the following:

No commercial value
For cultural purposes only


The selection results will be announced by the end of April 2019 on the official festival website.


The schedule for the Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2019 National Tour, will be announced in Spring 2019 and is subject to change. All selected films will be screened in Tokyo, but programs in other tour cities may vary.

As our festival continues to grow, we are working to expand the tour beyond Japan. The festival has visited Singapore, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Malaysia and other locations. Not all selected films will be screened at every location, but filmmakers will be notified via email if their films are chosen to be screened outside Japan.

The Festival Submission Guidelines are fixed, but festival venues, dates, awards, travel awards, etc. are subject to change at any time.

To submit a film, you need to create an account and register the film on either one of the aforementioned platforms. You can complete an online submission by clicking the button below.

Submit on Withoutabox