Mystery Box Short Film Challenge to Test Local Filmmakers and Storytellers

Filmmakers: If you're looking to compete in a film challenge but you don't want to be limited to just 48 hours, IFP/Phoenix has just the event for you. See, unlike many local film challenges that force teams to entirely conceptualize, film, and edit pieces in two days, the Mystery Box Short Film Challenge gives teams a full three weeks to craft a five-minute short film. Pretty luxurious, right?

See also: Manhattan Short Film Festival Selections to Screen at Phoenix Art Museum

Starting Friday, September 26, teams of any skill level are invited to test their filmmaking abilities in the Mystery Box Film Challenge. With three weeks to make a film, including writing, directing, editing, and scoring, standards for the finished product are a little higher than your average two-day challenge.

However, all of that extra work will pay off for competitors because every film made in the challenge will screen at Phoenix Art Museum on Thursday, October 30, at 7 p.m.

Although the box's contents for each team are, well, a mystery, past challenges have included items like a hockey stick, an answering machine, and a stuffed frog. The boxes will also contain a number that corresponds to a line of dialogue that the team must include in their short film. Some past examples are "Quick, we need to operate!," "That's not supposed to happen," and "Is anyone else seeing elephants?"

Winners for this year get bragging rights and some prizes, of course. However, the first-place team will receive half of all the cumulative entry registration fees, which are $25 for IFP members and $50 for non-members. The winning short film will also qualify to screen at the 2015 Phoenix Film Festival and receive two free filmmaker passes to the festival along with other benefits.

If you're interested in registering or looking for more information, visit the IFP/Phoenix website. Registration for this year's challenge ends on Friday, September 26.

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