DIY Filmmaking Challenge: Sci-Fi
Submissions closed: a no-budget filmmaking challenge for creatives aged 16-25

A retro-futuristic graphic reads: SCI FIA retro-futuristic graphic reads: SCI FI

Key information

Submissions closed
Max runtime: 3 mins

What’s involved

Win funding for your next film
Practise your skills & showcase your work

Boldly go! Submit a Sci-Fi short film for the chance to win funding & career development support.

** Update, January 2024: submissions for DIY Film Challenge: Sci-Fi are now closed. We'll be showcasing the shortlisted films at Showroom Cinema on Sunday 18 February - book your ticket now. **

DIY Filmmaking Challenge is an opportunity for aspiring filmmakers aged 16-25 in the North of England to practise their filmmaking skills and create original short films in response to a theme.

For our latest challenge, we want filmmakers to create Sci-Fi micro-shorts. Your film can explore any aspect of science fiction filmmaking - from space odysseys to not-so-distant dystopias. Or you could experiment with production design ideas and making your own special effects. We want to see your take on the Sci-Fi genre.

Looking for inspiration? Join us for Sci-Fi Stories on Thursday 14 December. We'll be joined by filmmaker Sean Mckenna for an online masterclass exploring the making of his short Future Perfect and his tips on how to achieve bold science fiction concepts within the constraints of a short film. Find out more.

What’s in it for you

Shortlisted films will be presented at a special showcase screening as part of BFI Future Film Festival. The screening will take place on Sunday 18 February 2024 at Showroom Cinema, Sheffield.

Shortlisted filmmakers will also receive a one-to-one mentoring session with our BFI NETWORK filmmaker development team.

One winning filmmaker will receive £1,000 of funding and production support to make a micro-budget short in 2024.

What we’re looking for

Creatively, there are no rules to the DIY Filmmaking Challenge. We want to see bold, original responses to the theme that showcase who you are as a filmmaker.

Production value doesn’t matter. Ideas do. You can use whatever equipment you have access to. Films can be any form - live action, animation, documentary, or something in between.

Practically, there’s only a few things to bear in mind:

  • Submitted films should be no longer than 3 minutes
  • Films should be your own work, and should have any necessary copyright clearances in place
  • Filmmakers should be aged 16-25
  • Filmmakers should be based in the North of England (see the areas we cover)
  • Filmmakers should have written consent from any participant if their film portrays lived experience. Any sensitive and identifiable information should not be included and instead should be anonymised

Get involved

You can submit your film via the online form below.

The deadline for submissions is 23:59 on Monday 15 January 2024.

** Submissions closed **

DIY Filmmaking Challenge: Sci-Fi is delivered by Film Hub North as part of BFI Film Academy.

BFI Film Academy offers opportunities for ambitious 16-25 year olds, anywhere in the UK, to get to know more about film and how to forge a career in the screen industries.