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An Oscar®-qualifying festival

Aspen Shortsfest is an Oscar®-qualifying film festival recognized as one of the premier short film festivals in North America. Each April enthusiastic audiences, filmmakers and special guests from around the globe gather to participate in public screenings, panels, workshops, and other festivities that spotlight the art and craft of short moviemaking. Aspen Shortsfest continued its tradition of Oscar® success with The Martha Mitchell Effect, directed by Anne Alvergue + Debra McClutchy, which screened at Shortsfest 2022 and was nominated for Best Documentary Short at the 2023 Academy Awards. Prior to that, Joanna Quinn and Les Mills’ Affairs of the Art – the jury prize winner for comedy at Shortsfest in 2021 – was nominated for Best Animated Short at the 2022 Academy Awards. Other recent Shortsfest selections that have garnered Oscar® nominations include Daughter by Daria Kashcheeva, Sister by Siqi Song, Brotherhood by Meryam Joobeur (also a jury member at Shortsfest in 2020), and Nefta Football Club by Yves Piat.

The festival is an industry-recognized destination for discovering breakthrough talent. Reinaldo Marcus Green (King Richard), Destin Daniel Cretton (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Short Term 12), Damien Chazelle (La La Land, Babylon), Jason Reitman (Ghostbusters: Afterlife, Up in the Air), Sarah Polley (Women Talking) and the late Jean-Marc Vallée (Dallas Buyers Club) are among the notable alumni whose short films first screened at Shortsfest before they became household names.

Voted one of “the 25 coolest festivals in the world” by MovieMaker magazine.

Screening Venues

The Wheeler Opera House

Since 1889, the Wheeler Opera House has been Aspen’s community performance venue. From The Eagles, Jerry Seinfeld, Oprah Winfrey and Sheryl Crow to locally-curated performance experiences, the Wheeler offers a remarkable movie-viewing locale that we’re proud to provide to our film festival audience.

320 E Hyman Ave, Aspen, CO 81611

Aspen Film Isis Theatre

The Isis Theatre opened in 1915 in the heart of downtown Aspen, where it remains to this day. Featuring four-screens, concessions, and diverse programming, the Isis is the only full-time movie theater in Aspen. During Aspen Film festivals, the Isis Theatre is home to many of our matinee showings.

406 E Hopkins Ave, Aspen, CO 81611

The Crystal Theatre

The Crystal Theatre is a single-screen, 125-seat, independent movie theatre housed in the historic Dinkel building in downtown Carbondale, Colorado. We’re proud to partner with The Crystal Theatre during our festivals to screen select programming down valley.

427 Main St, Carbondale, CO 81623

A taste of shortsfest

In the news

2023 SHORTSFEST Award Winners

Apr 19, 2023

ASPEN FILM ANNOUNCES 2023 SHORTSFEST OSCAR®-QUALIFIERS AND AWARD-WINNING FILMS ASPEN, Colo. (April 17, 2023) In an awards presentation held on Sunday, April 16, Aspen Film, the year-round film arts, and education organization, announced the winning films from its 32nd Aspen Shortsfest April 10-16, 2023. One of only four Oscar®-qualifying festivals in the US strictly dedicated to […]

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Sopris Sun interns gain cultural insight from Shortsfest filmmakers

Apr 19, 2023

Recently, three of The Sopris Sun youth journalism interns, Yesenia Benavides, Antoinette Brasier and Dominic Furer, had the chance to interview two directors whose films were featured at Aspen Film’s Shortsfest this year: Julia Elihu, director of “In the Garden of Tulips,” and Noam Argov, director of “Sulam.” Below are but a few highlights from […]

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Aspen Shortsfest 2023 Interview: Noam Argov on Making Sure Nothing’s Lost in Translation in “Sulam”

Apr 18, 2023

There are already too many mental calculations that Alma (Oriah Elgrabli) has to keep in her head as she prepares for a math final when disaster strikes in “Sulam,” less in a panic than her mother (Mor Cohen) about a leak in the ceiling of their apartment than the prospect of what it will take […]

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