MA Short Film Festival 2024

Liverpool John Moores University is proud to announce that its MA Short Film Festival is returning for its 4th edition, online from the 15th – 22nd March, and in-person from the 18th – 22nd March 2024. 

Established in 2021 and organised by MA Film students, the festival showcases outstanding student films from around the world in four strands: Fiction, Animation, Documentary and Experimental.

The 2024 programme features 38 films from 21 countries, with student filmmakers competing for one of four coveted Paper Bird Awards, bestowed on the winning film by judging panels comprised of industry experts, academics, previous winners and LJMU students.

Visitors to the festival website will also be able to vote for their favourite film to receive the Audience Paper Bird Award.

For the first time ever, the festival will be fully hybrid, meaning that audiences will have the choice of how they want to watch: in-person at one of our screenings or online at

Live screenings of each individual film strand will take place at LJMUs Redmonds Building across 18th – 21st March, followed by a live Q&A with some of the filmmakers featured in this year’s programme.

In another first, our yearly closing awards event will take place on Friday 22nd March at Scale Liverpool and be streamed live across our social media channels.

The LJMU MA Short Film Festival is curated and delivered as part of the MA ‘Exploring Film Festivals, Distribution and Exhibition’ module. This pioneering approach to post-graduate study is spearheaded by Dr Lydia Papadimitriou as part of the MA Film course at LJMU's Screen School.

She said: “Co-organising and curating a real festival enables our MA students to gain hands-on experience in a variety of disciplines, including, trailer editing, social media campaign management, public relations, and live event management. The transferable skills developed over the course of the festival are also deployable in a variety of sectors, meaning that students gain from their studies both academically and professionally.”

Emily White, international MA student and festival co-organiser, said: “As a Canadian, I am proud to be a part of the LJMU MA Short Film Festival, which reflects the diverse cultural make-up of the city of Liverpool through its commitment to showcasing global talent. The festivals module has enabled my classmates and I to get first-hand experience of working within the Film Festival and wider Film industry, which will support us as we look to develop our professional careers going forward.”

This year’s MA Film students have done an amazing job selecting an outstanding programme out of 2746 film submissions!

Martin Jones, Festival Coordinator & Tutor added: “The live events we have introduced for the 4th edition are sure to excite and stimulate audiences. Our key remit at the festival is to promote the quality of student filmmaking from all corners of the globe, and the films that have been selected are sure to continue that endeavour.”

IMAGE: Martin and Lydia (front) with the organising team of MA Film students,


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