- Films that have been produced during the 12 months preceding the Festival
- Films whose distribution is limited to their country of origin
- Films that have not been presented at any international motion picture event. If the film has been selected for an international section (competitive or not) of a festival, it becomes ineligible for the Festival de Cannes. A selection is international if it presents films from different countries.
- Films that have not been shown on the Internet
- Short films that do not exceed 15 minutes in length, including credits
- The film should not be pornographic or incite hate
- If the film is not in French or English, it should be subtitled into French or English.
But the bigger question is:
Why do you want to show your short at Cannes?Let's face it, the chances of an award are tiny, and the cost is high. So look deep into your film-maker's soul and ask why you really want to attend. If you live outside of mainland Europe, attending Cannes is complicated and expensive. It is also very complex as a business. Are you willing to spend money promoting the film? Are you willing to be there the whole time?
Ultimately, the big question here is: Who would see it, to what purpose and at what cost?
Luckily, I have an answer of sorts. I do actually recommend attending Cannes if you think the movie or "content" business is something that you foresee as a career. It is where the whole world comes to meet, talk movie business, finance, pitch and distribute movies.
However, they are not there to watch shorts, as there is only a tiny market for them. Producers, agents, distributors and exhibitors are looking for great movies - even though each has their own definition of greatness.
The only reason to attend is to meet these people if - AND ONLY IF - you have a great idea for a movie. In this context, your short is only useful as a stepping stone. You can meet people saying, "I'm attending with a short at the Short Film Corner and I'm working on this other great project."
Just make sure the idea is a great one. For writers, this means that if the script has not been written, you have re-written the synopsis or treatment at least four times. You could also get a script reader involved. For directors, you need to be able to answer a question I just love: "Why do this story now, and why should I do it?" Think carefully, and if necessary change your idea to make it waterproof when the tough questions come (they will, believe me!).
For more ideas, visit Cannes or Bust.