Cultural Arts Division Announces Call for Short Films for “Faces of Austin” Program

The City of Austin’s Cultural Arts Division, part of the Economic Development Department, is seeking submissions of short films for its 2019 Faces of Austin program. Established in 2005, Faces of Austin showcases shorts by local filmmakers that reflect the diverse faces, voices, and experiences of our City. Selected films will be screened during the SXSW Film Festival as part of the SXSW Community Programming in March, and will also be shown on the City of Austin’s channel, ATXN, and via the City’s website. One film will also receive a “Judge’s Choice” designation from a celebrity guest judge. All films selected will receive a cash award.

Submissions are due no later than Friday, January 11, 2019 at 5 PM.

Faces of Austin has enabled us to spotlight the vast array of talent within our local filmmaking community,” remarked Cultural Arts Division Manager Meghan Wells. “From light-hearted profiles of Austin locales to moving tributes of individuals who have shaped the fabric of our city, this program serves as an important outlet for Austin’s creative community. We look forward to sharing a new selection of compelling shorts soon.”

Faces of Austin submissions must meet these criteria:

  • 10 minute maximum length
  • By an Austin-area filmmaker or commissioned through an Austin organization
  • Original non-fiction or fiction work no older than 3 years old
  • Filmed in Austin or highlights Austin-area topics or organizations
  • Does not violate copyright law by using copywritten work, including music, without permission
  • Does not solicit funds or a particular political call to action
  • Must be appropriate to show in a public setting to an audience of all ages
  • May not be also selected by SXSW as part of its SXSW Shorts Competition
  • Applicants must be 18 and older
  • Applications from filmmakers with diverse cultural backgrounds and/or stories that highlight the diversity of Austin’s identify are encouraged
  • Preference will be given to filmmakers who have not been selected in previous years

Selection Process
A selection panel comprising project advisors, media experts, and City staff will review each artist’s materials submitted by the project deadline. Selected submissions must meet all of the requirements and demonstrate a high quality. The City of Austin reserves the right to disqualify materials deemed offensive or inappropriate to show in a public setting. The “Judge’s Choice” will be selected from among the selection panel’s top 5 rated submissions.

October 1, 2018: Call for Entries Issued
Jan. 11, 2019 (5 pm): Entries Due
Feb. 2019: Selection and notification selected films
March 2019: Public screening during SXSW Film Festival as part of the Community Programming

March 2019 ‐ March 2020
Films to be shown on ATXN and via City’s website, and at Community Screenings around town.

For complete guidelines, visit

Apply here:

For additional information please contact:
Laura Odegaard /512-974-6345 or

City of Austin Cultural Arts Division
The Cultural Arts Division of the Economic Development Department provides leadership and management for the City’s cultural arts programs and for the development of arts and cultural industries. The Cultural Arts Division is responsible for the Cultural Arts Funding Programs, Art in Public Places Program, community-based arts development, and programs to assist the development of film and creative industries in Austin.  For more information, visit

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