In 2013, OFF were rewarded a very prestigious title in the film business. OFF was acknowledged as Denmark’s first Oscar qualifying film festival. This meant we could send the winners from our Main Competition and Danish Competition straight to the pre-jury of the Academy Awards in Hollywood. In 2015, we were given yet another Oscar qualifying category; the Animation Competition, and as the latest, the winner of the Documentary Competition was also sent to the Oscar selection in 2018. Gladly we can send all winners of our short film competitions to the prestigious Oscar Committee.
However, OFF is for all lovers of the cinema. That is why, in collaboration with Fyens Stiftstidende, we give out the Audience Award as well, which is given to the film, who receives the most votes from the audience. We also have a ‘Youth Jury Award’. In this category, the nominated films are judged by a youth jury consisting of an 8th grade class from one of the local schools, who receive training in what to look for, when judging films. Last, but not least, we award the two best pitches in the ‘Pitch Me Baby’ competition with economic support to bring their film to a reality.
A total of 14 awards are awarded the very best films at the OFF Award show.
The short film is a genre as multifaced as ever! Expect butterflies in your stomach but also brace yourself for an unwavering stare into the pits of human existence.
The number of short film in this competition varies and consists of 60-75 international and Danish film. After a thorough viewing they are chosen from a field of over 2,500 short film; firstly by a pre-jury and secondly by a selection jury, who chose the film with the biggest OFF-feel. The chosen short films are shown during the festival and by the end of the festival week the jury of the main competition hands out three awards; H.C.A. Award, Storyteller Award, and Artist Award.
*Notice that all film in the main competition are unsuitable for children.
Since 2019 OFF has had the honor of choosing a short film from the International Competition to be OFFs candidate for a European Film Award (EFA).
Danish short film is alive and kicking. Don’t take our word for it: See for yourself in this competition.
It is a difficult task for the jury to pick our and chose the best short film form Denmark. Some of the films also compete against international film in the main competition.
In this competition the following awards are handed out: Best Danish Short Film and the Talent Award.
In addition, the Danish Film Academy has shortlisted the films in this selection for their Robert award, also known as the Danish Academy Award.
At OFF, we know animation. From exclusively screening animated films between 1975 and 1983, OFF has since expanded its definition of a short film to include all genres. Audiences are in for a stunning sensory overload with pieces of creative madness from international and Danish animators.
In this competition, the Danish Animation Society (ANIS) chooses the animation jury, who hands out the awards: Børge Ring Award and the Talent Award.
This competition category was added to the festival in 2018 and is the place to get your fix of undiluted documentary screenings. We feature documentaries that make full use of their platform given to enlighten their audience, either by bringing forth a new, important subject or point-of-view, or giving an existing discussion new light.
We know the long documentary from TV, but the short version is still very unknown to many people. The short documentary can be very intense and it introduces the audience to parts of the world, which one would seldom (or never) otherwise experience. During less than 30 minutes the audience has the opportunity to visit areas of the world, they didn’t knew existed, they get to meet people with strange personalities, or to simply experience a slice of life, depicted in unusual ways.
In this competition two awards are handed out: Best Short Documentary and the Soapbox Award.
There is no doubt that short film are great for children and young adults, which is why we are proud to have a youth competition at OFF. Films from all other competitions at OFF, which are suitable for young audiences from 14 years and up get selected for the youth competition. This gives the younger audiences a rare and fun introduction to the wonderful world of short films.
The youth competition also has a special jury, which consists of a class from a local school and the young jurors go though special preparation for the task. They award one film the Youth Jury Award.
During the festival, a wide selection of short films is shown, and although many of the films contain serious and sometimes harsh adult subjects, there is also plenty of room for movies for the little ones. The Junior program is adapted for both children and young people and offers the opportunity to participate in film screenings, workshops and talks. At OFF, children and young people’s learning is prioritized; Therefore, most of the programs from year to year also provide inspiration and learning tools that can be used by teachers.
Programmes for 3-11 years old are only in danish. 14+ and YOU are danish but with english subtitles.
In the recent years, OFF has invited danish film teams to the film festival under the project OFFSPRING, where we gather film talents from Denmark’s film education programs: Super8, EFC, Super16, 18Frames, The Danish Film School and Animation School Viborg. In 2019, we also included the Actors’ School in Odense as well as the Southern Danish Conservatory of Music in OFFSPRING to invite synergy and better collaboration among the various professional groups, which are part of a film production. OFFSPRING is a flourishing success every year, where Denmark’s film talents get the opportunity to meet Danish and international professionals and each other, inspire and network. In 2019, the OFFSPRING program included workshops, speeding dates, panels and talks, all of which had a relevant focus on film production and film exposure.
Odense Filmværksted has since 2008 organized Talent Camp for young filmmakers in the festival week: the first year for Danish talents, the years after for Nordic talents and since 2011 with participation of both Nordic and international talents. At Talent Camp, about 20 participants will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the film craft with other like-minded people – all without having to worry about deadlines and budgets. There are lessons, workshops and masterclasses from morning to evening with presenters from the Danish film industry – and of course watch a lot of short films.
TNFF – The Next Film Festival is a film competition and film festival for Danish filmmakers under the age of 21, which for several years has been a regular part of the film festive days during OFF. The films on TNFF are found at the opening semifinals of the country’s five regions and each contain radical ideas, touching stories and good laughs – all seen from a young camera angle. During OFF, TNFF offers both winning films and Q&A’s with the young directors behind the films. The audience has the opportunity to meet the filmmakers, watch the films and feel the unique energy of the youth.
Open air is an event in the spirit of community. Every year during the festival week, OFF welcomes the audience to movie classics and open-air concerts. The event is held at the Amphiscene in Brandt’s Passage at the Brandts Art Museum – with plenty of space to pull out a picnic blanket and enjoy movies and music on a big screen. Open air is one of the events that especially shows the great love and interest in the cinematic format that exists in the audience when thousands of people gather in the summer night to watch movies in the open air.