City of Port Phillip


Australia's Top 100 Short Films

Proudly presented and produced by the City of Port Phillip, the St Kilda Film Festival supports the Australian film industry by turning the spotlight on a wide range of fascinating works that may not otherwise see the light of day. Exceptional films by emerging artists and short works by accomplished industry professionals are shown on the big screen, where they look their shiny best.

In 1984, the St Kilda Film Festival began as the first festival to exclusively screen Australian short films. Now, the St Kilda Film Festival is a ten-day event, incorporating the Top 100 Australian short films, the SoundKILDA music video competition, international program, youth programs, special screenings and a FREE filmmaker development program. The Festival consumes the Melbourne film world annually in May and, approaching its 35th birthday in 2018, has screened over 2,800 Australian short films in competition.

Australia’s Top 100 prize pool totals over $50,000 in cash and in-kind craft awards, including a $10,000 prize for Best Short Film. Other awards include Best Director, Best Achievement in Screenplay, Best Documentary, Best Animation, Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Indigenous Filmmaking, Best Comedy and Best Achievement in Sound Post.

Accredited by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the St Kilda Film Festival is an Academy Awards® qualifying event, with award-winning films from the Festival eligible for consideration in the Short Film Awards AND Documentary Short sections of the Oscars®.


Festival Director, Paul Harris

Paul Harris fell in love with the movies at an early age. As a pimply-faced kid, his appetite was enormous. He developed a broad taste in cinema, discovering world movies and short films while attending Melbourne’s fine film festivals, including the then modest event in St Kilda, which he would later steer into the digital landscape of the 21st Century.

Paul has been lucky enough to indulge his overriding passion by continually working in his ‘field of dreams‘. He began hosting 3RRR’s Film Buffs Forecast in 1982, and became Director of the St Kilda Film Festival in 1999. Every now and then over the course of his career, Paul has been asked to appear in films. He can be spotted in Melbourne-made classics including Dogs In Space, Nirvana Street Murders and Love And Other Catastrophes. In between these bouts of acting, Paul has written movie reference books, worked in the film distribution/exhibition sector (Fox, Columbia, GUO, Roadshow), operated a cinema (Liberty, Brunswick) and worked in various capacities at the Australian Film Institute.

He has also conducted oral histories for the National Film and Sound Archive, been a regular movie reviewer for over twenty years and taught film at RMIT, VCA and Swinburne University.

In his spare time, Paul studies the art of verbal wordplay.