January 25, 2021


Oscar®-qualifying film festival will be all virtual April 6–11, 2021

ASPEN, CO (January 25, 2021) – With the health and safety of audiences and filmmakers of greatest importance, Aspen Film announces that its 30th Annual Aspen Shortsfest 2021 will be presented online for the second year in a row. This year’s festival is scheduled for April 6-11, 2021. Like last year, by presenting the festival virtually, Aspen Film is able to preserve the Oscar®-qualifying festival in a unique and innovative way. 

Aspen Film Executive Director Susan Wrubel states, “Last spring, COVID-19 hit the Roaring Fork Valley just prior to our 2020 festival. Our incredible team quickly shifted gears and completely re-worked the festival onto a virtual platform in a matter of days.  By making it available online, we attracted audiences and film fans from all over the country with our first foray into the virtual world.” Wrubel continues, “Thankfully, this year we have more time to take the online festival to the next level. Plus, we’ve been doing a great deal of virtual programming since the pandemic hit and are anxious to use that experience to bolster Shortsfest 2021’s offerings, including some online and interactive events.”

Nearly 3,000 films were submitted for this year’s festival. Led by Shortfest Program Director Jason Anderson, have been reviewing submissions with plans to announce the full lineup of for this year’s program in early March.

The online festival experience will have limited screening windows for each Shorts Program, just like the traditional festival. Viewers will be able to choose from a variety of ticket and pass options, based on how many programs they wish to watch. Access will be limited to viewers in the United States and short films will only be screened within curated programs, rather than individually. More information about tickets and passes – including pricing and when they will be available for purchase – will be announced in the coming weeks. Aspen Film members will have first priority. More information about membership and the festival is available online at

Just the Facts:

Who:    Aspen Film

What:   30th Annual Shortsfest, Oscar®-qualifying short film festival

When:  April 6-11, 2021

Where: Online, Shortsfest 2021 will be presented virtually due to COVID-19

More:   Additional information – including selected films, festival schedule, special events, and ticketing information – to be released in the coming weeks

The 30th Aspen Shortsfest is made possible by the generous support of Alpine Bank, Aspen Public Radio, and The Aspen Times. Shortsfest is also charitably underwritten by grants from AspenOUT, City of Aspen, Colorado Creative Industries, Colorado Office of Film, Television & Media, National Endowment for the Arts, Les Dames d’Aspen, and the Wheeler Opera House (City of Aspen) Arts Grant Program.


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