Calling all young filmmakers

Award-winning organ composer Nathan Avakian with Baycourt’s Wurlitzer Organ. Photo: Brydie Thompson/Thompson Photography.

Young Kiwi filmmakers have less than one month left to get their entries in for the 2017 International Youth Silent Film Festival New Zealand Regionals before submissions close on Sunday, October 1.

The international competition, which debuted in New Zealand last year, challenges filmmakers aged 20 and under to create a three-minute silent film set to one of 10 musical scores composed especially for festival.

This year there are 10 awards on the line, including a first place prize of $2000 thanks to the New Zealand Broadcasting School. The 10 winners selected by this year’s celebrity judge Tim Balme will be announced at the 2017 IYSFF NZ Regional Finals taking place at Baycourt Community and Arts Centre in Tauranga on Wednesday, November 22.

This year Kiwi filmmakers will vie for a total cash prize pool of $6500 – including a $750 highly recommended prize sponsored by South Pacific Pictures, a $1000 third place prize sponsored by Priority One, a $1500 second place prize sponsored by the University of Waikato, and a $2000 first place prize sponsored by the New Zealand Broadcasting School.

“Story-telling is at the heart of what we teach at the New Zealand Broadcasting School at Ara, whether it be sound, text or moving pictures,” says Tony Simons, head of the school.

“For that reason, we are proud to be so closely associated with an international screen competition that promotes silent film; story-telling in one of its purest forms.”

Also up for grabs are five $250 prizes sponsored by Metro Marketing (Best Director), Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology (Best Actor and Best Cinematography/Special FX), Toi Whakaari: New Zealand Drama School (Best Production Design), and Campbell Squared (Editing).

Entries for the 2017 IYSFF NZ Regionals close on Sunday, October 1. For competition rules, submission guidelines, and to enter the competition, visit