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Women X: Submissions open for short film festival celebrating women and non-binary filmmakers.

by Alice Fletcher

Women X Film Festival is looking for short films directed, written or produced by women or non-binary filmmakers, in an attempt to combat the male-dominated, London-centric festival circuit. 

With new awards for North East filmmakers and student films, submissions for short films are open until 30th June 2021, with this year’s festival being held on the 10th -12th September 2021.

Celebrating its second year, Women X has been breaking down barriers faced by underrepresented voices in the industry with an ethos intrinsically connected to the community and the championing of one another. 

This year’s Women X festival will take place via a combination of in-person and virtual events, showcasing North East talent and creating a global collaborative space with accessible screenings, panels, workshops, networking opportunities, and self-care spaces.

As a beacon of inclusivity, the three-day festival has ensured submission costs are accessibly priced - 70% lower than the average UK film festival. 

Working in association with partners ScreenQueens, Write Her Direct Her, and The Light Leaks, the festival is committed to addressing the extreme lack of opportunity for filmmakers that aren’t straight, white and/or male - with inclusivity at its core.

According to the Centre for the Study of Women in Television and Film, Indie film festival screenings of narrative films directed by women were half in a number of those by men during 2019 - 2020. Of the top-grossing films in 2019, 15.1% were directed by women and 14.4% were directed by people of colour (Hollywood Diversity Report, 2020), whilst

GLAAD’s overview of major studio releases in 2019 showed the shocking disparity of LGBTQ+ representation on screen.

Created by Rianne Pictures, a women-led film production company founded by Caris Rianne, focusing on female leading roles and exploring social matters, Women X festival 2021 will offer a range of helpful experiences for filmmakers.                                                

From guidance on smashing festival funding goals to managing personal wellbeing in creative industries and navigating the male-dominated world of film criticism, the Women X panels and workshops cater for people across all stages of their career.

Women X’s official 2020 selection showcased 32 short films including Love Spell (Best Director, Lauren Ververs), Dispel (Best Writing), The Train to QinLing (Best Animation) and Antonio (Best Drama). 

Short films can be submitted no later than 30th June 2021 via FilmFreeway. Visit FilmFreeway for further submission guidance.