• Reel Life TV

Your guide to the Indy Shorts Film Festival

Get your tickets now at IndyShorts.org

Heartland Film announced the lineup of 201 independent short films – 22 World Premieres and 19 U.S. Premieres – included in the 4th Indy Shorts International Film Festival, July, 20-25, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. In an effort to accommodate different viewing preferences, the 6-day festival is offering 3 different ways to experience the Academy Award®-Qualifying Festival with indoor, outdoor, and virtual viewing options. Festival fans can watch all 201 shorts featured in 33 themed programs virtually, attend outdoor (picnic-style) screenings at the Indianapolis Art Center (820 E 67th St, Indianapolis, IN 46220) and IndyFringe (719 E St Clair St, Indianapolis, IN 46202), or experience the festival inside at the luxurious new Living Room Theaters at the Bottleworks District (745 E 9th St Suite 810, Indianapolis, IN 46202).

“Indy Shorts is now a qualifying festival for all three short film categories at the annual Academy Awards®. This designation, partnered with our remarkable track record of 7 Oscar® wins and 29 nominations, resulted in 3,300 short film submissions – the most in Indy Shorts history,” said Artistic Director Greg Sorvig. “The influx of quality film submissions made it easy for us to nearly double the amount of films compared to just a year ago.”

Many festival favorite programs have expanded. Last year’s breakout hit program Heartland Horror has doubled into two programs and a celebration of local films will be showcased across three Indiana Spotlight programs across all three in-person venues. The pandemic has also opened the door to an entirely new program called “It’s Been a Year,” which showcases hopeful and cathartic stories inspired by the challenges of 2020.

This year’s festival theme, A Short Escape, invites audiences to escape into the wonderful world of short films.

“After the year we’ve all had, we could all use a getaway, and I can’t think of a better way to do that than by attending the Indy Shorts International Film Festival,” said Heartland Film President Craig Prater. “You can physically and mentally retreat as you enjoy world-class short films while lounging in the gardens of IndyFringe and the Indianapolis Art Center, exploring the glamorous new Bottleworks District, or relaxing in your own backyard for a true staycation. With world class shorts included in a wide variety of themed programs like Sci-Fi, Animals, Sports!, Comedy, Horror, Portraits and Indiana Spotlight, there is A Short Escape for everyone!”


· Academy Award Nominee Ben Proudfoot in the “Spotlight: Oscar®-Nominated Breakwater Studios” Program - Indy Shorts will feature an entire program featuring the illuminating, humanist stories of the Oscar-nominated Breakwater Studios, a world leader in short form documentaries. 2021 Academy Award® nominee “A Concerto is a Conversation” will be featured alongside “The Silent Pulse of the Universe” (World Premiere), “The First Report” (World Premiere), “The Beauty President,” “The Unchosen One,” and “The Queen of Basketball.”

· Will Ferrell and William Jackson Harper (The Good Place) are featured in the film “David,” included in the “Well, This is Awkward” program.

· Noah Reid (Schitt's Creek) stars in the U.S. Premiere film “The Archivists,” included in the “Expressions” program.

· Academy Award® nominee Riz Ahmed (Sound of Metal) and Letitia Wright (Black Panther) are among the narrators in the film “Lines,” featured in the “Expressions” program.

· Jane Goodall appears in the film "Pant Hoot," featured in the “Animals” program.

· Diana Lin (The Farewell) stars in the film “Lonely Blue Night,” featured in the “It's Only Customary” program.

· Emmanuel Carter (Noggin Knows) stars in the film “The Last House,” featured in the “Horror 2: Strange and Unusual" and "Indiana Spotlight 2" programs.

· Golden Globe® and Emmy® Award winner Ben Whishaw (No Time To Die) stars in the film “Miss Fortunate,” featured in the “Comedy” program.


Earlier this year, six shorts showcased at the Indy Shorts International Film Festival were nominated for the 2021 Academy Awards®, with the Indy Shorts 2020 Animated Finalist “If Anything Happens I Love You” (Netflix Original) taking home the Academy Award® for Best Animated Short Film. Indy Shorts is honored to have the Oscar®-winning co-director/writer, Michael Govier, as an Indy Shorts 2021 jury member. Joining Govier on Indy Shorts juries are five fellow directors and an executive producer behind other 2021 Academy Award nominees: Anders Hammer (“Do Not Split”), Farah Nabulsi (“The Present”), Sheila Nevins (“Hunger Ward”), Doug Roland (“Feeling Through”), and Tomer Shushan (“White Eye”). The full jury list can be found at IndyShorts.org.

These jury members will help select this year’s top winners. Filmmakers competing for Grand Prizes in the Narrative, Documentary, and Animated categories will also win Academy Award® qualification in addition to $5,000 cash prizes. Since 1991, Heartland Film has presented $3.5 million in cash prizes – the largest total amount awarded by any film festival in North America. This year, Indy Shorts will present more than $32,000 in cash prizes.

For the fourth year in a row, Indy Shorts has the honor of partnering with the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge, which gives filmmakers—with and without disabilities—the opportunity to collaborate to tell unique stories that showcase disability in its many forms, along with the opportunity to win amazing prizes. Heartland Film is a proud partner and showcases the winners of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge in the program, “Unique Stories: Celebrating EDFC & Disability.”

The full shorts film lineup, in-person schedule, fest passes, and ticket details can be found below or at IndyShorts.org.


*Heartland Film members receive 20% off all ticketing options


VIP Fest Pass | $129 | Access to all virtual screenings + one ticket to each in-person screening

Duo Fest Pass | $169 | Access to all virtual screenings + two ticket to each in-person screening

Virtual Fest Pass | $89 | Access to all virtual screenings

Virtual Household Fest Pass | $109 | Access to all virtual screenings for multiple viewers


Virtual Only 5 Pack | $49

Individual Virtual | $11


Living Room Theaters | $13

IndyFringe | $13

Indianapolis Art Center | $15


*Attendees who choose to escape to the Outdoor Screenings will receive FREE HotBox Pizza and an Indy Shorts Picnic Blanket.

Friday, July 23, 2021 | Indianapolis Art Center

Sponsored by HotBox Pizza and Sun King Brewery

Awards Winners | 6:30 PM

Indiana Spotlight 1 | 8:45 PM

Saturday, July 24, 2021 | IndyFringe

Indiana Spotlight 2 | 9 PM


Wednesday, July 21, 2021

It’s Been a Year | 7 PM

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Indiana Spotlight 3 | 7 PM

Comedy | 9 PM

Horror 1: Splatter | 9 PM

Friday, July 23, 2021

Expressions | 5 PM

Sci-Fi | 7 PM

Horror 2: Strange & Unusual | 9 PM

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Animals | 5 PM

Spotlight: Oscar®-Nominated Breakwater Studios | 7 PM

Well, This is Awkward | 9 PM

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Sports! | 5 PM

The Fight for Justice | 7 PM

Portraits | 9 PM


High School Film Competition | Horror 1: Splatter |Horror 2: Strange and Unusual | Comedy | Sci-Fi | Indiana Spotlight 1 | Indiana Spotlight 2 | Indiana Spotlight 3 | Reunited | Roots, Reconnected | Relationships | Expressions | Our Changing World | The Fight for Justice | Sports! | The American Dream | Healing | Generations | Well, This is Awkward | Spotlight: Oscar-Nominated Breakwater Studios | It’s Been a Year + Animated Shorts | Finding Yourself | Portraits | Past/Present | Sense of Place | Animals | Crossing Over | Youth Impact | Looking for Home | Journeys | It’s Only Customary | Unique Stories: Celebrating EDFC & Disability | Award Winners |


Film Title | Country of Production | Director(s) | Premiere Status


Beautiful (USA, China) Director: Mulan Fu

The Better Angels (Australia) Director: Michael Cusack (U.S. Premiere)

Blue Fear (France) Directors: Marie Jacotey, Lola Halifa-Legrand

Coffin (France) Directors: Yuanqing CAI, Nathan CRABOT, Houzhi HUANG, Mikolaj JANIW, Mandimby LEBON, Théo TRAN NGOC

Darwin’s Notebook (Switzerland) Director: Georges Schwizgebel(U.S. Premiere)

Department of Injustice (USA) Director: Travis Wood

Forever (USA) Director: Mitch McGlocklin

The Fourfold (Canada) Director: Alisi Telengut

Homebird (UK) Director: Ewa Smyk (World Premiere)

The Home Office (USA) Director: Dani Bowman (In partnership with the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge)


In The Future (USA) Director: Kelly Gallagher (World Premiere)

Izzy's Demons (USA) Director: Gregory Garay

KKUM (USA, South Korea) Director: KIM Kang-min

Launch(USA) Director: Leah Shore

Lifeblood (Australia) Director: Nicholas Tory (U.S. Premiere)

Lines (UK) Director: Claire Fleming

Love Is Just a Death Away (Czech Republic) Director: Bára Anna Stejskalová

Migrants (France) Directors: Hugo Caby, Antoine Dupriez, Aubin Kubiak, Lucas Lermytte, Zoé Devise

Mon ami qui brille dans la nuit (My friend who shines in the night) (France) Directors: Grégoire DE BERNOUIS, Jawed BOUDAOUD, Simon CADILHAC, Hélène LEDEVIN

Mum is pouring rain (France) Director: Hugo de Faucompret

Navozande, the musician (France) Director: Reza Riahi

Nuevo Rico (USA, Puerto Rico) Director: Kristian Mercado Figueroa

O Black Hole! (UK) Director: Renee Zhan

Oxygen (Belgium) Directors: Rocky Grispen, Violette Belzer

Paco (Austria/Mexico) Directors: Susanna Ruttnig, Stefan Tantana (U.S. Premiere)

Souvenir Souvenir (France) Director: Bastien Dubois

TIO (Mexico) Director: Juan J Medina (U.S. Premiere)

The Torture Letters (USA) Director: Laurence Ralph

Wayback (Spain) Director: Carlos Salgado (U.S. Premiere)


A Concerto is a Conversation (USA) Directors: Ben Proudfoot, Kris Bowers

Águilas (USA) Directors: Kristy Guevara-Flanagan, Maite Zubiaurre

Aguilucho: Dance of the Harpy Eagle (USA, Panama) Director Daniel Byers

Ale Libre (USA) Director: Maya Cueva

Arctic Summer (USA, Canada) Directors: Daniel Fradin, Kyle Rosenbluth

The Beauty President (USA) Director: Whitney Skauge

Blood On Our Side (Mexico) Directors: Rodrigo Hernandez, Elpida Nikou

CYCLES(USA) Director: Jonathan Barenboim

death. everything. nothing. (USA) Director: LeRhonda Manigault-Bryant

E14 (UK) Director: Peiman Zekavat

Faraway (Canada) Director: Aziz Zoromba

The Felling of Colston (UK) Director: Arthur Cauty

The First Report (USA) Director: Ben Proudfoot (World Premiere)

Full Picture (USA) Director: Jacob Reed

Golden Age Karate (USA) Director: Sindha Agha

H.A.G.S. (Have A Good Summer) (USA) Director: Sean Wang

The Heart Still Hums (USA) Directors: Savanah Leaf, Taylor Russell

How to Fall in Love in a Pandemic (Ireland) Director: Michael-David McKernan

Joe Buffalo (Canada) Director: Amar Chebib

Just Being Here(USA) Director: Matteo Moretti

Keep Calling (UK) Director: Liam Saint-Pierre

KEIARA(USA) Director: Floyd Russ

Learning to Drown (USA) Director: Ben Knight

Life, Unexpected (USA) Director: Guy Nattiv

Little Berlin (France, Germany, UK) Director: Kate McMullen

The Little Tea Shop (USA) Directors: Matteo Servente, Molly J. Wexler

Miss Alma Thomas: A Life in Color (USA) Director: Cheri Gaulke

Mr. Wild (USA) Director: Caleb Wild

NANDO (Brazil, USA, Chile) Director: Alec Cutter

Nay Nay Too Bomb (USA) Director: Marie Alyse Rodriguez (U.S. Premiere) (In partnership with the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge)

October 27th, 2020 (USA) Director: Hannah Price (World Premiere)

Of Memory and Debris (Venezuela, France, Canada) Director: Rodrigo Michelangeli

Pant Hoot (USA) Director: Richard Reens

The Queen of Basketball (USA) Director: Ben Proudfoot

R.I.P. T-Shirts (USA) Directors: David Heilbroner, Kate Davis

Rachel (USA) Director: Zen Pace

Rebyrth (USA) Director: Cydney Tucker (U.S. Premiere)

Red Horizon (USA) Director: T.C. Johnstone

Red Taxi (Hong Kong) Director: Anonymous

RESIST: The Resistance Revival Chorus (USA) Director: Susan O'Brien

Say His Name: Five Days for George Floyd (USA) Director: Cy Dodson

Seabird(UK) Director: Conor Ferris (U.S. Premiere)

Seahorse (Germany) Director: Nele Dehnenkamp

She Carries On (USA) Directors: Isaac Fowler, Tim Morris

Shelter (USA) Director: Smriti Mundhra - Sesame Workshop and HBO Max

The Silent Pulse of the Universe (USA) Director: Ben Proudfoot (World Premiere)

Since you arrived, my heart stopped belonging to me (USA) Director: Erin Semine Kökdil

Slim Pickins (USA) Director: Justin Jeffers

Snowy (USA) Directors: Kaitlyn Schwalje, Alex Wolf Lewis

Still Processing (Canada) Director: Sophy Romvari

Street Reporter (USA) Director: Laura Waters Hinson (World Premiere)

Supermalo (USA) Director: Matt Seger

Team Meryland (USA) Director: Gabriel Gaurano

Homefront (USA) Director: Kristi Jacobson (World Premiere) - Sesame Workshop and HBO Max

The Unchosen One (USA) Director: Ben Proudfoot

Virtually Free (USA) Director: André Robert Lee

When We Were Bullies (USA) Director: Jay Rosenblatt

Who Fights For You? (USA) Director: Maddie Stambler

Wonderfully Made (USA) Director: Benita Ozoude

Your Street (Switzerland) Director: Güzin Kar (U.S. Premiere)

Narrative Short

54 / The Blind Turtle and the Endless Sea (Greece) Director: Isabella Margara

The Affected (Norway) Director: Rikke Gregersen

Al-Sit (Sudan, Qatar) Director: Suzannah Mirghani

Anita (India, USA) Director: Sushma Khadepaun

Apart, Together(USA) Director: Olivia Hang Zhou (U.S. Premiere)

The Archivists (Canada) Director: Igor Drljača (U.S. Premiere)

Are You Still There? (USA) Directors: Rayka Zehtabchi, Sam Davis

Aria (UK) Director: Christopher Poole

At Last (USA) Director: Lorena Gordon

Axe to the Face(USA) Director: Andrew Moorehead

Bad Furniture (USA) Director: Randall Maxwell

BJ's Mobile Gift Shop (USA) Director: Jason Park

BÖREK (Occupied Palestine, Israel) Director: Eli Rezik (World Premiere)

Brief Survey (USA) Director: Dava Whisenant

Bruiser (USA) Director: Miles Warren

Chai (USA) Director: Arshum Rouhanian (World Premiere)

Cherry Lemonade (USA) Director: Aisha Ford

Chuj Boys of Summer (USA, Guatemala) Director: Max Walker-Silverman

Close Ties to Home Country (USA) Director: Akanksha Cruczynski

Cuttlefish (USA) Director: Alexandra Geller (U.S. Premiere)

David (USA), Director: Zach Woods

Devek (Israel) Director: Uriya Hertz

Dinner (Vietnam) Director: Linh Tran

Dọlápọ̀ Is Fine (UK) Director: Ethosheia Hylton

Don't Freak Out (USA) Director: Casimir Nozkowski (World Premiere)

Don’t Go Tellin’ Your Momma (USA) Directors: Jason Sondock, Simon Davis

Dwarfo-psychosis (USA) Maria DiDomenico (In partnership with the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge)

Empiric(Romania) Director: Ioana Țurcan (World Premiere)

enough. (USA) Director: Caleb Slain

The Everlasting Club (UK) Director: Joy Wilkinson (World Premiere)

Eye Exam (UK) Director: Aislinn Clarke

The Familiars (Australia) Director: Millicent Malcolm

Fempire (USA) Director: Honora Talbott(World Premiere)

The Following Year (Spain) Director: Miguel Campaña

Forgive Your Father (Canada) Director: Moises Velasquez (U.S. Premiere)

Frayed Roots (Lebanon) Director: Nay Tabbara

Gym Patriot (UK) Director: Slobodan Karajlovic

Heartland (USA) Director: Jahmil Eady

Her Dance (Israel) Director: Bar Cohen

I am afraid to forget your face (Egypt, Belgium, France, Qatar) Director: Sameh Alaa

The Journey (Canada) Director: Ève Saint-Louis

Lakutshon' Ilanga (When the Sun Sets) (South Africa, United States) Director Phumi Morare

The Last Day of Patriarchy (Czech Republic, Slovenia, France) Director: Olmo Omerzu (World Premiere)

The Last Ferry from Grass Island (USA, Hong Kong) Director: Linhan Zhang

Learning Tagalog With Kayla (USA) Director: Kayla Abuda Galang

Leylak (USA) Directors: Scott Aharoni, Dennis Latos

Like the Ones I Used to Know (Canada) Director: Annie St-Pierre

Liza Anonymous (USA) Director: Aubrey Smyth

London Arabia (UK) Director: Daniel Jewel

Lonely Blue Night (USA)Director: Johnson Cheng

Magnolia Bloom (USA) Director: Tayo Amos

Marlon Brando(Netherlands) Director: Vincent Tilanus

Mass Ave (USA) Director: Omar Kamara (World Premiere)

Miss Fortunate(UK) Director: Ella Jones

The Mohel (Canada) Director: Charles Wahl

Mountain Cat (Mongolia, UK) Director: Lkhagvadulam Purev-Ochir

The name of the son (Argentina) Director: Martina Matzkin

Navel Gazers (USA) Director: Kimmy Gatewood

Photo Op (USA) Director: Dava Whisenant

Pick Up (USA) Director: Clare Cooney

Plaisir (USA) Director: Molly Gillis

Play It Safe (UK) Director: Mitch Kalisa

PLEASE HOLD (USA) Director: KD Dávila

The Price of Cheap Rent (USA) Directors: Amina Sutton, Maya Tanaka

Pops (UK) Director: Lewis Rose (World Premiere)

Raspberry (USA) Director: Julian Doan

Rock A Bye Baby (USA) Director: Monique Sorgen

Silento (Colombia) Director: Esteban Garcia Vernaza

Social Fitness (USA) Director: Anna Pakman (In partnership with the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge)

Someone's In Here (USA) Director: Ben Kitnick

stay awake (USA) Director: Colton Patrick Walter

The Speech (USA) Director: Haohao Yan

Strasbourg 1518 (UK) Director: Jonathan Glazer

Stuffed(UK) Director: Theo Rhys

SWIPE (USA) Director: Anthony Sneed

The Thing That Ate the Birds (England) Directors: Sophie Mair, Dan Gitsham

Triangle (UK, Hungary) Director: Péter Engelmann (U.S. Premiere)

Umbilical (UK, Greece) Director: Elpida Stathatou (U.S. Premiere)

We're not animals (France) Director: Noé Debré

When The Tar Leaks Red (UK) Director: Dominic Stewart (U.S. Premiere)

White Wedding (USA) Director: Melody C. Roscher

Who We Are (USA) Director: Alexis Sallee

WILDMAN (USA) Director: Will Brittain (World Premiere)

Witness (Iran) Director: Ali Asgari

Woodland Cemetery (The Netherlands, Sweden) Director: Niels Bourgonje

Indiana Spotlight

38th & Postmodernism (USA) Directors: Daniel Arthur Jacobson, Jared Thompson (World Premiere)

The Aviators: A Father/Son Story (USA) Director: Jeffrey Ogden

The Bladesmith (USA) Director: Drew Dayton

Brown Sugar (USA) Director: Nifemi Adejumobi

A City of Stories (USA) Director: Tim Taylor

Cutters (USA) Director: Matt Dillman

Duality Derby (USA) Directors: Mark Miller, Dave Franzese

The Last House (USA) Director: Mike James

The Long Run: Wes Doty's New Life (USA) Director: C. Thomas Lewis

More Than Corn (USA) Director: Rocky Walls

MTXE: Mental Toughness Xtra Effort (USA) Director: Emmanuel Terrell

Rebel Bells (USA) Directors: Anne Colton; Michelle Yates

The Rope Warrior (USA) Directors: Andrew Bourne, Daniel Feldman

Rosie's Rescue (USA) Director: Terry Weston Marsh

Time to Heal (USA) Director: Tucker Gragg


High School Film Competition (HSFC)

091319.mov (South Korea) Director: Kun Kim (World Premiere)

5 Years from Water (USA) Director: Thao Nguyen (HSFC Documentary Winner)

Beth (UK) Director: Ava Bounds (U.S. Premiere) (HSFC Narrative Winner)

The Humanity Test (USA) Directors: Samuel Mitchell, Lily Kaplan

Girl Scout Cookies (USA) Director: Alex Dashwood

No Human Being is Illegal (USA) Samuel Villagra-Stanton(World Premiere) (HSFC Documentary Winner)

Pinned Down (USA) Director: Angela Kwak (World Premiere)

POWER OUTAGE (Estonia) Director: Katariina Koemets (U.S. Premiere)

Running the Empire (Australia) Director:Hugo Long (World Premiere)

Sophie and Jacob (Canada) Director: Max Shoham (HSFC Animated Winner)

All of the films, description, and tickets and more can be found at IndyShorts.org.

About Heartland Film, Inc.

Heartland Film is a nonprofit arts organization that runs the 11-day Heartland International Film Festival in October, the Academy Award®-Qualifying Indy Shorts International Film Festival in July, the Truly Moving Picture Award and other year-round programs. Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, Heartland Film was founded in 1991 with the mission to curate, promote and celebrate thoughtful and engaging films from diverse perspectives. Over the years, Heartland Film has presented $3.5 million in cash prize – the largest total amount awarded by any film festival in North America – presented 200+ studio films with the Truly Moving Picture Award, and showcased more than 1,800 feature and short films, including seven Oscar®-winning titles. The 30th Anniversary of the Heartland International Film Festival is running October 7-17, 2021. For more information, visit HeartlandFilm.org.