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3×5 Filmmaking Competition



What is the 3×5 Film Competition?

The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute 3×5 Film Competition is an independent short filmmaking contest, where creators are given a story prompt and have five days to create a three minute short film. The contest culminates in a public screening of the selected films and an award ceremony.  

Why enter The Lee Strasberg 3×5 Film Competition?

The first ever Lee Strasberg 3×5 Film Competition was founded as a celebration of the creative spirit. It is a unique platform that values the innovation of up-in-coming talent and celebrates cinematic creativity. The competition provides an opportunity for filmmakers at all levels to exhibit their work in a supportive environment. All films selected will be screened at the prestigious Marilyn Monroe Theatre in West Hollywood, California and will be judged on their overall creativity and technical quality. 

How to Enter:

  • Team “captains” must submit their team registration form no later than Wednesday, November 30th.
  • At 12pm PST of Friday, December 2nd team captains will be contacted with a story prompt and a final submission form.
  • All completed films must submitted through the official submission form (provided to team captains on Friday, December 2nd.)

Dates and Deadlines:

Team Submission Form Available: Friday, November 4th

Deadline to Register Team: Wednesday, November 30th

Story Prompt Sent: Friday, December 2nd at 12PM PST

Deadline to submit finished films: 5 pm PST on Tuesday, December 6th

Notification of selections: Monday, December 12th

Competition Screening: Friday, December 16th 

Competition Entry Fees:

General: $25

LAUSD student: Free (with waiver code) 

Competition Judges:


  • All films must have a total run time (TRT) of 3 minutes or less (not including credits up to 1 minute in length.)
  • All films must be created within the five days designated.
  • The Lee Strasberg Institute is not responsible for any injuries or damages as a result of participating in this contest. We encourage safe and smart filmmaking.
  • We reserve the right to disqualify any films or film makers that do not follow the competition guidelines or the The Institute’s code of conduct.
  • LSTFI staff and faculty may submit films but will not qualify for awards.


  • General – All films will be entered into this category
  • Strasberg Community – Films directed by, starring, or crewed by a majority of Strasberg current students and alumni 
  • International – Film must be shot entirely outside of the United States
  • Comedy
  • Drama
  • Genre – Includes Horror, SciFi, Experimental, etc.
  • Smartphone – Films shot on smartphones
  • LAUSD – Films shot by students (under 18 and currently enrolled in the LAUSD school system)


Cash Prize(s)

  • Best Acting* (Individual award for a part-time scholarship to The Lee Strasberg Institute with a max value $2,550) 
  • Best of Competition* ($300 cash prize)
  • Best Smartphone Film ($100 cash prize)
  • Student Savant Award – LAUSD Students only ($100 cash prize) 

Competition Laurel(s)

  • Best Strasberg Community Film (awarded to currently enrolled or alumni of LSTFI)
  • Best New Voice (most original/creative)
  • Best International Film
  • Best Drama
  • Best Comedy
  • Best Genre Film (horror, sci-fi, noir, etc)

Honorable Mentions

If deserving, each category will offer honorable mentions. 

Screening Details:

All filmmakers are invited to attend the in-person screening. There is a suggested donation of $5 at the door.