FAQ: Made in the West

What are the entry criteria for Made in the West films?

We don't put restrictions on what type of films you should be making, we just want you to make them with Western Sydney filmmakers! So our main criteria is that all films need to include at least one cast member, crew member or set location from Western Sydney.

We want to see what you're working on currently, so we don't set any rules about special items or tag lines to include in your work. We want to see whatever Western Sydney filmmakers WANT to produce. So that means your film can be ANY genre - every year we have a range of entries, from documentaries and mockumentaries, to horror, action, comedy and drama shorts, plus animated films, music videos, web series episodes... pretty much everything and anything!

Your final duration must be under fifteen minutes - this is just so that we can screen plenty of local films on the night (usually about 20). We know it's hard to keep some stories short, but it does mean a more interesting viewing experience for our live audience. If your work is longer, you can cut a shorter version just for the festival or ask us about submitting a trailer. See our Entry Criteria page for more information about the film specifications required.


How do I submit my film to Made in the West?

Wondering how to enter a film in the festival? It's very easy!

Use our online entry form to submit your film details to Made in the West Film Festival.


Step 1. Click on the PayPal link to make the required payment for Independent OR Student filmmaker – your selection determines which of the major awards you will go in the running to win. Save the Paypal reference number.

Step 2. Fill out your film details, synopsis and contributor names on the entry form - these details are used in our program line-up and award certificates, so be sure you have them spelled correctly! Enter your Paypal reference number and a link to your film which has been uploaded to an external website (YouTube or Vimeo). All films should be 1920 x 1080 HD.

Note: If you don't want to make your film public online, upload it as an 'unlisted' video and share the link / password with us.

Step 3. Tick the box giving us permission to screen / promote your film and click submit.

How do I get to Made in the West?

Are you planning how to get to the festival? Here are your public transport and parking options:

Event Cinemas is located on the top floor of Westfield Shopping Centre, on Elizabeth Drive in Liverpool.

TRAINS do not run to Liverpool Station due to scheduled trackwork. See below for travel tips.

#T80 BUS: From Parramatta (every 15 mins)

#M90 BUS: From Bankstown (every 20 mins)

#802 BUS: From Fairfield (every 30 mins)

#872 BUS: From Campbelltown (every 30 mins)

Pedestrian access to the cinema is via the front entrance of Westfield Shopping Centre then take the first escalator to the roof.

PARKING: Access the Westfield carpark via George Street and go to the roof. Parking at Westfields is free for 3 hours if you arrive during the day, or entirely free if you arrive after 6pm.

ACCESSIBILITY: The cinema is wheelchair accessible

Do you screen feature length films at Made in the West Film Festival?

No, we don't currently include feature length films in the program at Made in the West. We know that many Western Sydney filmmakers are just starting out in the industry so short films, doco's, music videos and web series are the main projects people are working on - understandably too, it's how we'll all get our names out there!

Of course, we're all aiming to build our repertoires and get working on larger projects, so hopefully as the sort of work we do gets bigger and better over time, so too will our program. We'd love to eventually include a feature film category in the festival.

In the meantime, we are happy to screen trailers for feature films that have been produced in Western Sydney (usually one or two at the start of each segment) and we encourage you to get in contact with us if you're interested in having your film trailer shown on the night.

Note: The Made in the West team is also available to plan, promote and screen your feature film in a separate live screening event specifically for Western Sydney filmmakers. We have a large audience of local artists and film lovers that can help us roll out a great night. If this is something you are interested in, please contact us and tell us what you're looking for.

How many films are screened at Made in the West?

We try to screen as many films as we can in the time frame that we have! Usually that means we have time for about 16-18 films, but it really depends on the total duration of our final films.

We also screen trailers for feature films made in Western Sydney.

Our total screening time sits at about 2.5 hours, which we screen in two segments then finish with an award ceremony. There are two half-hour intermissions during the night so you will have plenty of time to mingle too (see details about the event format below).

How much are tickets to Made in the West / how can I book tickets?

Are you wondering how to book tickets to attend Made in the West?

All tickets are FREE, though we need to to register your attendance so that we don't run over our 330 seat capacity.

Made in the West Film Festival has always been a FREE event for audiences to attend and we want to keep it that way. Finding an audience for our films is one of the hardest aspects of filmmaking and we know that having a few hundred people to watch, laugh and consider your film as they see it on the big screen is such a valuable experience.

We want all local filmmakers to enjoy the buzz that comes with seeing their work on the big screen and for that reason we are willing to provide that experience for free. We encourage you to bring as many friends, family, cast & crew with you to share the love for local films and vote for their favourite.

I've entered the festival. How do I know if my short film will be screened?

If you have entered your film in Made in the West Film Festival, you'll be notified by email after submissions close with information about whether you have been selected as a finalist. If you are notified as a finalist, your film will be judged by our panel of industry professionals and screened at the festival. All finalists will be invited to our VIP meet and greet before the show, plus go in the running to win awards and prizes. Nominations for individual category awards will be announced after the judging process is complete, in the final fortnight before the festival.

What's the format of the night / when does the event finish?

Doors open at 6pm to all guests. Finalists and VIPs will be invited to join us early for a glass of champagne!

We kick off the proceedings at 6.30pm. There will be two segments (each about 60 minutes in duration), then the final awards ceremony. Individual category awards are announced throughout the night. Major trophies are awarded at the end.

We break for a 25-30 minute intermission at 8pm and 10pm, so you will have enough time to chat to the other filmmakers, get your cast & crew photos on the red carpet, mingle in our VIP area, and refresh your drink to take into the next session. Note: Finalists will have their interviews on the red carpet during intermissions.

Once all the films have screened, you will vote for your top three films! We know the judging panel is pretty awesome and they have their own ideas on who should take home a trophy, but we also want YOU to vote for your favourite so we can send someone home with our Audience Choice Award. Your votes will be counted in the final intermission and the film with the highest number of votes will win.

The festival finishes with a trophy presentation ceremony for the winners of the Best in the West, Best Student Film and the Audience Choice awards.

Expected finish 11pm.

My question wasn't answered. Help me!

Get in contact with us - we're happy to help! Find our contact details on the Contact Us page or fill out the email form to ask a question :)

Is Made in the West an all-ages event?

No, Made in the West is an 18+ event. Many of the films will contain mature content. This means that all of the usual things (including strong language, sex scenes, adult themes, drug use and violence), will probably make an appearance at some point throughout the night. Note: If you are the parent or guardian of an under-age cast or crew member of one of our finalist films, feel free to contact us to discuss your options.

Will Made in the West hold the rights to my film if I submit?

When you submit your film to Made in the West, we ask for permission to show the film at the festival and to use it in our promo videos. Sometimes we contact filmmakers with additional distribution opportunities via online channels or live screenings, but we always get in touch and request new permissions. As filmmakers ourselves, we are committed to making sure filmmakers keep ownership (and profits) for your film. We will never ask you to hand over the rights to your film, nor will we request that you reserve your premiere for us (though you are welcome to!). You are welcome to share your film wherever & whenever you like and we look forward to helping you promote your work by also screening it at Made in the West.

When is Made in the West Film Festival?

Are you wondering what date the festival is? Made in the West Film Festival will take place on Saturday 21 November 2020! Doors open at 6pm. Venue: Event Cinemas, Liverpool Keep an eye on our LATEST NEWS or follow us online to stay in the loop!

When do submissions open / close this year?

Are you wondering when entries open so you can submit a film to the festival? Submissions open in March for Made in the West 2020! CLOSING DATE: 23 OCTOBER Early bird entry fee ($35) is valid until 31 July at midnight. Main round entre fee ($40) is valid until 16 October at midnight. Late round entry fee ($50) is valid until 23 October at midnight. We looking forward to seeing what you've been working on, Western Sydney!

How is COVID-19 impacting festival plans for 2020?

Made in the West Film Festival is scheduled for Saturday 21 November 2020, with our first ever online screening event planned for Saturday 28 November. We are currently proceeding with caution and listening carefully to the advice of the NSW Government in regards to public gatherings. At this time, we expect that social distancing measures will still be in place by November, which means we'll have less tickets available than in previous years. For this reason, we are planning for an exclusive VIP filmmakers-only awards night at Event Cinemas in Liverpool, featuring Western Sydney filmmakers on the red carpet. Of course there will be new safety measures in place, like digital check in and allocated seating, plus extra cleaning staff and plenty of hand sanitiser. Right now, we’re working closely with the team at Event Cinemas to design a Covid-safe event for us all to enjoy. The best part is, we'll ALSO be bringing the red carpet to YOU at home too, for the first time ever! SAVE THE DATE for Made in the West 2020 online screening on the night of Saturday 28 November! If the health risk escalates in November, we'll be asking our VIP filmmakers to join us for a virtual awards night instead! Hosted in a digital format and featuring all the good vibes of a virtual red carpet event, we'll award our top trophies to the best Western Sydney filmmakers of 2020 and capture their reactions so we can share them with you at home. If for any reason the festival is cancelled entirely, then all short films already submitted will go into the 2021 film submission pool to be included in our 10th year anniversary festival. We announce the full details closer to the festival date, when tickets open for registrations in November 2020. All festival entrants will be informed directly of any major event changes. Follow us on Facebook or keep an eye on our news blog to stay in the loop.