The Challenge

The Easterseals Disability Film Challenge gives filmmakers—with and without disabilities—the opportunity to collaborate to tell unique stories that showcase disability in its many forms.

Before the Challenge

Read the Rules

Official Rules

To be eligible for an award, you must follow the official rules. Here’s what you need to know:

Length

Your film must be between three and five minutes, with up to an additional minute of credits.

Required materials/footage

At the beginning of the challenge weekend, the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge will post the competition genre/theme, along with a list of required props and/or locations, to the homepage. You will also receive a courtesy email, notifying you of the film challenge kickoff. You must include all the required components in your film. Teams are strongly encouraged to integrate story elements that acknowledge disability.

Originality

Your film must be entirely original and captured over the course of the contest weekend. No pre-recorded footage, including stock footage, may be used.

Crew

Your cast and crew must be volunteers. You are strongly encouraged to collaborate with at least one person with a physical or cognitive disability in one of the following roles:

  • Writer
  • Director
  • Producer
  • Actor

Title Cards

Before the finished film begins, the file must include a title card, which will be available for download during the challenge period.

Credits

End credits are limited to a maximum of 60 seconds and must conclude with the text “This film was made for the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge”.

Technical Stuff

Films must be uploaded to Vimeo and a downloadable link to the film must be included in your FilmFreeway entry. All participants must sign the following forms and submit to  by the contest deadline.

  • Release
  • Certification statement

For additional questions, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.

Release Agreement

Entry Agreement

Certification Statement

Promotional Campaign Report

Before the Challenge

Register at FilmFreeway.com

FilmFreeway.com is an online service that hosts film competitions. Before you begin work on your film, you’ll need to create a placeholder account on Film Freeway and pay the fee for your registration.

  1. Create an account at FilmFreeway.com or log into your existing account.
  2. Create a placeholder project titled, “EDFC Entry.” You won’t have to fill in any of the other fields or upload any content at this point.
  3. Submit your placeholder project to the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge.

Regular Registration Deadline: Sunday, April 9th ($45)

Late Registration Deadline: Wednesday, April 19th ($60)

Before the Challenge

Mark Your Calendar

Registration period

Monday February 13th – Wednesday, April 19th

Challenge begins

Friday, April 21st @ 11:00 am PDST

Film submission deadline

Sunday, April 23rd @ 5:59 pm PDST

Market your film

Monday, April 24th – Monday, May 8th

Finalists Announced

Thursday, May 11th

Winners Announced at Los Angeles Event

Thursday, May 18th

The Challenge

Make Your Film

The Easterseals Disability Film Challenge will post the genre/theme and required elements on the homepage to kickoff the competition. Gather your props, assemble your team, and begin filming!

Keep the following judging criteria in mind:

Creative Merit – 40%:

  • Story/plot
  • Performances
  • Entertainment value

Technical Execution – 30%:

  • Picture quality
  • Sound quality
  • Editing & post-production quality
  • Production value & effects

Inclusion of assignment criteria – 30%

Once you are finished capturing and editing your film, upload it to your Vimeo account:

  • Create a new account or log into Vimeo and upload your downloadable film
  • Log into FilmFreeway
  • Click on “My Projects” on the top of the website
  • Edit your “EDFC Entry” project
    • Rename the project to your film’s title
    • Enter a brief synopsis of the film
    • Copy and paste your film’s downloadable Vimeo URL into the website field
    • Click “save project” at the bottom of the page

Remember to email your signed releases and certification statement to info@disabilityfilmchallenge.com

If you have any questions about this process, please visit our FAQs.

After the Challenge

Promote Your Film

In the week following the film challenge, you will receive an email announcing the start of the promotional campaign. Check out the film challenge’s YouTube page to find your film’s link and watch other entries. Use the link to share your film across social media, contact local press outlets and ethically hustle to get as many views and shares as possible.

Be sure to track views, social media shares, and press. At the end of the promotional campaign, complete the Promotional Campaign Report to be considered for the Best Awareness Campaign award.

After the Challenge

Attend The Event (optional)

The Easterseals Disability Film Challenge will announce award finalists following the conclusion of the marketing campaign. All participants are invited to an event in Los Angeles, CA to hear the announcement of the winners and celebrate.

Check back soon for more information on this event.