The Palm Springs International ShortFilm Festival is one of our favorite festivals to take place all year long here in the Coachella Valley.  It features work from filmmakers who are the ‘up-and-coming’, the ‘big guys trying new projects’, and even locals.  Some of these films that have been chosen are made with little to no budgets, however, all come fully equipped with fresh creative ideas that serve as inspiration to those in the audience.   

Another one of our favorite features to this festival is the lack of paparazzi, red carpets and extremely long lines – not too much of that here…just the picture, the talent, and the fans.  Basically, the essentials that you need for a festival in the desert to survive in the summer. 

The only aspect to this film festival is that is disappointing is that when we are there we look around and do not see enough people our age are showing up!  Such a bummer.  But, hopefully we can change that!  Our mission is to get you all there this week – so don’t make us come to your house and drag you out (bloggers are always better behind the computer screen anyways)!!

Below is our complete run-down of everything you need to know about the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival 2012.  Scroll all the way through for video, photo, recommendations and more.


*P.S. Big huge THANK YOU to Katherine Martinez who so gratefully helped with all the information!!!

** All photos provided by the Palm Springs International Film Fest website

ps film fest

What is a Short Film?

short film is any film not long enough to be considered a feature film. No consensus exists as to where that boundary is drawn: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences defines a short film as “an original motion picture that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all credits”.[1] The term featuretteoriginally applied to a film longer than a short subject, but shorter than a standard feature film.

The increasingly rare term short subject means approximately the same thing. An industry term, it carries more of an assumption that the film is shown as part of a presentation along with a feature film. Short is an abbreviation for either term. Short films can be professional or amateur productions. Short films are often screened at local, national, or international film festivals. Short films are often made by independent filmmakers for non profit, either with a low budgetno budget at all, and in rare cases big budgets. Short films are usually funded by film grants, non profit organizations, sponsor, or out of pocket funds. These films are used by indy filmmakers to prove their talent in order to gain funding for future films from private investors, entertainment companies, or film studios. Short films do qualify for Academy Awards if screened in Los Angeles. – via Wikipedia

Palm Springs International ShortFilm Festival

Official Website:


The Palm Springs International Film Society is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization. With a year-round program of screenings and special events, the PSIFS hosts two major annual festivals and presents monthly screenings of contemporary international films, many with special guests attending for post-screening Q&A’s

Arm's Race film

Arm’s Race

Youtube via One Day:


Palm Springs International Film Society strives for a world in which enlightenment, knowledge and tolerance prevail. We believe film as an art form has the power to bridge cultures and illuminates the universality of the human experience.

ABC the film


Youtube via Color Bleed:


300 out of 3,000 submissions are chosen to screen next week during one of North America’s largest short film festivals. 300 could seem like a staggeringly high number of movies to watch but all of these films range from 3 minutes to 35 minutes; the majority are under 15 minutes.

After these 300 films are chosen they will be placed in a ‘program’ with 2-4 other short films with related patterns or themes. Each program is roughly the length of an average film (90 minutes or so) and costs $11.

Attack of the Brainsucker

Attack of the Brainsucker

Youtube via Swimming Pool:


Some of the directors are students, some have screened in festivals throughout Europe and the East Coast, others will be watching their films for the first time on a real theater screen.

The Boy in the Bubble

The Boy in the Bubble

Youtube via The Photographs of Your Junk:


June 19th-25th.
After Opening Night, movies will start to screen around 1030am and run all day until about 700pm or 800pm.

Beside Her

Beside Her

Youtube via Nani (Trailer):


Camelot Theatre

2300 East Baristo Road, Palm Springs, CA
(760) 325-6565
Camelot Theater Palm Springs, CA

Camelot Theater Palm Springs, CA


The Festival website is always a good place to start browsing through packages.

Festival books can be found in coffee shops, art galleries and boutiques all over Palm Springs. The Desert Sun also printed a version that can be found in Palm Desert inside of their offices.

Award Winning Documentaries

Award Winning Documentaries

Youtube via Grandmas (Trailer):


Fashion-blog prodigy Tavi Gevinson lends her voice to the animated film, Cadaver (ending with the Neil Young cover she sang during NYC Fashion Week this year). (Note to Sarah – director Jonah Ansell will be in town).
Package: Zombie, Ghouls and Ghosts

Tavi Gevinson

Tavi Gevinson, famous teenage fashion blogger

Shia LeBeouf made his directorial debut this year with the sharply narrated story of a jaded film critic,Howard Cantour. Palm Springs will be the first screening in North America after premiering at Cannes.
Package: Shooting Stars

Before Jane Eyre, Shame, A Dangerous Method, Haywire… (pause to take a breath), and X-Men,Michael Fassbender acted in a short film: Pitch Black Heist.
Package –True Crime 

Fassbender in Pitch Black Heist

Fassbender in Pitch Black Heist

“Faster Pussycat, Kill! Kill!” American director Todd Rosken shows a young Russ Meyer with his muse inUp the Valley and Beyond.
Package – Extraordinary People

Film festivals can’t get enough of the mixed media animation Grandmothers, having screened in a dozen theaters internationally. Female director Afarin Eghbal is a serious talent to watch out for.
Package: Award Winning Documentaries

The Return won the International Fiction prize at Sundance AND was the first Kosovar film ever to be selected. This interview is well worth reading to find out more about director Blerta Zeqiri‘s process.
Package: Results May Vary


Gus Van Sant will be here in-person to present five of his short films and discuss the art of short filmmaking.

Gus Green Van Sant, Jr.[1] (born July 24, 1952) is an American film directorscreenwriterpainterphotographer,musician, and author. He is a two time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Director — for Good Will Hunting(1997) and Milk (2008), both of which were also nominated for Best Picture — and won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival for his film Elephant (2003).[2] He lives in Portland, Oregon.

His early career was devoted to directing television commercials in the Pacific Northwest. In his films, he has dealt with themes concerning homosexuality and other marginalized subcultures.

His filmography as writer and director includes a 1994 adaptation of Tom Robbins‘ 1976 novel Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, which features a diverse cast (Keanu ReevesRoseanne BarrUma Thurman, and k.d. lang, with cameos byWilliam S. Burroughs and Heather Graham, among others); and My Own Private Idaho (1991), also starring Reeves as well as River Phoenix.

He wrote the screenplays for most of his early movies, and wrote one novel, Pink.[3] A book of his photography has also been published, called 108 Portraits.[4]

– via Wikipedia, obviously


The AfterFest Party at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs on Saturday night