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Rusthall Short

Film Festival 2022

15th & 16th October

FREE entry for newbies

What's it all about

What's it all about ?

We are a popular community cinema in Rusthall, Kent in the South East of England.

We are delighted to announce our first film festival, on the weekend of 15/16 October 2022.  Will you join us in sharing your short film ? Whether a child's first video shot on a phone, or an experieced film maker we have a catagory in which you could win an award.


We will be holding free workshops for all age groups to experiment with shooting a short film optionally on our theme of My Community - My Story.


These sessions will be led by a skilled international film-maker and media educator. Children and families are welcomed. No experience is necessary, just enthusiasm and a mobile phone. 

All entrants wuill receive laurel certificates and the best of those submitted will be screened online and to a live audience and will be eligable for cash prizes. 


The second day is designed for film-makers everywhere to share their short films in any genre to gain exposure and comments from experienced judges and an audience. 

Those able to join us in person may like to take part in a Q & A session which we anticipate being shared over the internet to registered viewers.

Cash prizes and laurel awards will be presented to the best entrants.

Our Goal

Our Goal

Image by Jakob Owens

Image by Jakob Owens

Selfie with cows

Selfie with cows

Filming a Fitness Video

Filming a Fitness Video

Photographer wading across a stream with camera in his hand

Photographer wading across a stream with camera in his hand

Quadcopter Drone

Quadcopter Drone

Camera Gimbal

Camera Gimbal

Nature Shot

Nature Shot

Filming a Cooking Video

Filming a Cooking Video





Female Vlogger

Female Vlogger



Setting up camera in nature

Setting up camera in nature

With this weekend of film and in the months leading up to it we hope to encourage families and children to experiment with shooting a short (2 to 20 minute) film.  No experience is necessary as several free workshops will be offered to help in the basics of getting started.

The second day is designed for people who are comfortable developing a film around a theme in any genre (e.g. documentary, animated, drama) who would like to gain exposure and comments from an audience. 

The judges will assess each candidate film for

  • Quality of screenplay

  • Technical aspects of sound and vision

  • Overall entertainment value

  • Originality / Creativity

  • Direction

  • Performances

Categories & Awards

Categories and Awards

•    Festival Favourite
•    By age group

under 12

12 – 16
17 – 21

22 – 55

56 – 70

71 and over

•    Documentary
•    Animated
•    Live action
•    First film
•    Audio
•    Acting
•    Screenplay

Cash prizes:

​£100  Festival Favourite

£25    Category winner

£10    Selected for screening

​Laurel awards for all the above

Submission deadlines:







18th April

18th June

15th July

19th August

30th September

15th & 16th October


Mark Oliver

Mark Oliver is a Film History and Communications graduate from London.  Mark’s early career started at Sky TV making daytime and political shows in London’s Soho before working for Todd-AO Hollywood making films such as the BAFTA winning ‘An English Marriage’ and TV Dramas such as Taggart and Great Expectations for the BBC. 


Mark has also held various retail management roles and is currently working for Marks and Spencer’s within their digital marketing team as a creative producer for Sparks Live, their live online food and cookery programmes with chefs such as Chris Baber, Francesco Mazzei and Tristan Welch. Mark also enjoys urban photography and street art.

Peter Kemp

Peter Kemp was born in Manchester and moved around the country over the years, coming to Rusthall almost ten years ago.  His life's ambition is to own the complete Criterion Collection.

"My addiction to cinema started at school. By my early teens I was used to watching films by such directors as Reisz, Anderson, Kurosawa, Richardson, Truffaut, Reed and Schlesinger — all talented directors with something to say and the skill to put it on screen.  That's what I continue to look for every time I sit down to watch a film...."

Karen Gardner

Karen Gardner is a visual artist having studied in the USA and in the UK where she earned her MA in Visual Arts. Her interest in the visual language of film is a result of watching foreign films with her mother while growing up near The Naro Cinema in Norfolk, Virginia. 

Karen has tutored sculpture as well as Art History/Theory in Kent and West Sussex. She sees film not only as a form of story-telling but as production design.

Philip Philmar

Philip Philmar is an actor, writer and performance poet. He has appeared in several films by Tim Burton: Slugworth in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Mr. Fogg in Sweeney Todd, and Mr. Archer in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. He was also the Cook Giant in Jack the Giant Slayer, a shape-changing alien in Disney’s John Carter, and recently, a Spectre Agent in the Bond film, No Time to Die.

He also has an improvised comedy podcast (with actor Peter Stern), called Improv Noodles (hear it on YouTube).


Jeanne Pope is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, storyteller and educator, a graduate of the Mel Hoppeinehim film of cinema, Montreal, Canada.  A bit nomadic, she is Canadian-French-British and currently works for the Beijing Film Academy, Qingdao Campus, where she lived for 6 years.  Since the pandemic, she teaches graduate students remotely.  She gives workshops on digital storytelling, scrapbooking and documentary production and is currently finishing two documentaries, one in China and the other in Tunbridge Wells.
She has a passion for Victorian cemeteries, the veil between worlds and finding unusual subjects.  "I love walking out to places I don't know, or taking random bus / train trips to get lost among the crowds, and find accidental new adventures and stories, which are waiting to be told."

Simon Troy

Simon Troy and wife Chris have run Troy Film Agency since 1999 – the Agency being set up in 1980 by Ken Troy, a former Director of United Artists. They assist cinemas, universities, clubs and societies in obtaining screening licences, and help with upgrading from disc to DCP when required – a simple process as far as distribution is concerned owing to the long-standing relationship with all distributors.


Their close relationship with eOne, who appointed them as sole distributor for disc licences for Ken Loach’s ‘I, Daniel Blake’, introduced them to hundreds of smaller venues throughout the UK. As a very small organisation ourselves we like to support similarly small Distributors and venues. Simon owns the locomotive named ‘Sir Keith Park’ at Spa Valley Railway.


Anne Goldstein is a trustee of Rusthall Community Cinema and selects the popular diverse, international short films that accompany our main feature.  She has been commended in the national Teaching Awards and is nationally known for her inspirational work with children with special needs. She has made uplifting films of their dance and movement work.  Anne also spent over seven years teaching Film Studies in a London secondary school.  Committed to interfaith understanding, she also leads an international women educators’ group.

Tom Sands

Tom Sands dropped out of films school in 2010 and cut his teeth shooting and editing documentaries in eight countries including Indonesia, India, The Gambia and the US. These documentaries have since racked up more than two million views on YouTube.

In 2014, Tom produced and directed his first feature film - Backtrack, which starred Julian Glover and was picked up by Netflix in the UK. His second film The Holly Kane Experiment starred Nicky Henson and was released in North America, the UK, Germany and across Asia through 108 Media in 2017. His third film Rupert, Rupert & Rupert was released in the US and UK in 2019 by Global Digital Releasing and was nominated for Best Comedy at the National Film Awards in 2020. In 2021, Tom completed Decrypted with Sophia Myles, Amanda Abbington and Kevin McNally.

Day One
Day Two

Day one – UK based beginners

To inspire those with little or no experience of film making, and optionally celebrate the theme of My Community - My Story.  Entries must focus exclusively on amateur video by those resident in the UK.

Entries could highlight how you contribute to your community.  This might be your family, school, work, neighbourhood, faith group or wherever you belong.  Create and submit your best (this means two per person) short videos, using a smart phone, camera, app or other video device.

Your film could be made alone, with family, as a school project.  It could be instructional, promote a cause you feel strongly about, highlight nature on your doorstep, or perhaps chronical your local sports team - whatever you choose.

Films that the judges deem to be the best will be screened to our audience – live and online, they will be awarded laurels and the best of those can expect to win cash prizes.

With this weekend of film and in the months leading up to it we hope to encourage families and children to experiment with shooting a short film.  No experience is necessary as several free workshops will be offered to help in the basics of getting started.

Before acceptance, the festival administration will watch the videos to ensure that in their best estimation, comply with the relevant laws. 

​Free workshops will be available on a first come first served basis with registration required before the event.  Email to register for one of the upcoming dates.


Workshop 1.  First delivery 3rd April.  How to shoot your first film

  • Where to start and how to begin from the idea, research and archives, genre, length etc.

  • Staying within the law: how to obtain and use royalty-free music and stock images, plus an appreciation of why ‘release forms’ are required

  • Equipment

Workshop 2.  First delivery 8th May.  Basic film editing techniques

  • How to interview subjects

  • Use of voice-overs to narrate a story and other techniques

  • Output

Day two – international enthusiasts

The second day is designed for people who are comfortable developing a film around a theme in any genre who would like to gain exposure and possible comments from experienced judges and an audience.  Those able to join us in person may optionally like to take part in a Q & A session which we anticipate being shared over the internet to registered viewers.

Films should be between 2 and 20 minutes long, and shot from the perspective of the first or a third party.

As with the first day, entries will be screened to ensure compliance with laws and that they are suitable for screening to an audience aged 15 and over.

Those selected by the judges to be of sufficient merit will be screened on the second day to our live and virtual audience and win an accolade.  The best of those will also win cash prizes.

Applicants agree to some of their work being used in promotional advertising.  Films with unclear English dialogue must be subtitled.  All submissions must be made via FilmFreeway. Other rules apply as shown below.


Unless explicitly exempted in writing entrants agree to the following by submitting:

  1. Copyright.  You declare that your work is cleared for festival exhibition (all music, fonts, visuals etc. are cleared worldwide, in perpetuity, multi-platform), and the intellectual property is yours, or if acting as distributor you will send the copyright owners’ waiver(s).

  2. ​​Use of stills / clip fragments.  You consent to the posting of stills and clip fragments from the film on the festival’s website/platform plus social media channels, for solely promotional, non-commercial and educational purposes. Stills from your film could be used for example within our final list of winners/nominees, and short clip fragments from your film could be used within our festival trailer.

  3. Submitted films may be screened by RCC fee free for the year of submission

  4. The festival organisers and judges are not bound to accept submissions or publish their opinions.   No correspondence on decisions will be entered into.

  5. All submissions will be automatically entered into applicable award categories.

  6. Only films of between two and twenty minutes’ duration (including titles and credits) are eligible for submission.

  7. Submitted work must be completed after 28th May 2016. No more than two submissions per person will be accepted.

  8. Films without clearly understood English dialogue must be subtitled in English.

  9. The festival organisers will make awards where they deem it appropriate but are not obliged to.

  10. Entries must be submitted digitally via FilmFreeway.

  11. A brief (20 to 200 words) synopsis must be included with the submission.

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