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As fate would have it, we met as students in LJMU's MA Film course in 2020. Our online classes taught us all we could about building and operating a successful film festival. And successful it was. LJMU's first film festival received critical acclaim from everyone who attended, which was the starting point for the SSFF.

Upon graduation, we flew the coop and began building the Starling Short Film Festival to create and grow our own little murmuration in the world of film festivals. With so many people's help and hard work, we brought SSFF to the film festival track. 

Now with our first year under our belts, we hope that the next festival and those to come are bigger and better than its predecessor.




Fiction's capabilities are as endless as a piece of string.


Everyone and everything has a story to tell. How will you tell your story?


Your imagination is limitless in the world of animation.


Calling all students, here is your moment to shine. Come and show us the best films you have made.


This is our particular category. Each year we have a different topic for filmmakers to interpret. This year's topic is based on 'Community'.

What is your first thought when thinking of the word 'Community'?

Well, tell us. You get full creative reign with this particular category. Showcase your best interpretation of what community means to you.

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What's a film festival without awards? Here are the awards for the films chosen by our panel of judges:


Best Animation 

Best Student 

Best Fiction 

Best Documentary

Best Interpretari

The Murmuration Award: this is our audience prize! We will be asking our audience, both in person and online, to vote for their favourite film. The one with the most votes wins!

And finally, the very exciting Golden Feather Award for excellence in film, sponsored by Mad As Birds Films. The winner will receive a trophy, a small cash prize, and a free mentor session with Mad As Birds Films!

*In the event that a participating filmmaker wins one of our awards, SSFF will send the award to the filmmaker at an address provided by the winning filmmaker. Postage and shipping will need to be covered by the filmmaker if they wish to receive their award, and rates will vary depending on travel distance.

Vote for Murmuration Award here

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