Winter 2017 SPARTA is coming

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Short Films in a Movie Theatre


The SPARTA Film Challenge has screened almost 200 short films and awarded over $20,000.00 in prizes since December 2012!

The Winter 2017 SPARTA Film Challenge will allow 80 days to prepare, shoot, edit and submit a short film. The catch release will take place on January 20, 2017.

As always, the SPARTA Film Challenge will screen submissions in an actual movie theatre. We have selected Ottawa's Imagine Cinemas as it is an excellent screening venue and the staff are warm and friendly people with a very customer service oriented attitude.

Imagine Cinemas also has plenty of free parking, easy OC Transpo access via the St. Laurent Mall terminal and a comfortable and spacious lobby.

For questions or more information, contact

The Challenge

Create a short film containing the required elements within 80 days. Based on the results of previous challenges, the secret to success is a compelling story / script. We strongly suggest you consult a screenwriter to assist in the creation of your submission.

Create a digital short film (HD or SD) with a file size NOT exceeding 4 Gigabytes and shall be an MOV or MP4 file using the h.264 codec.

There is no minimum running time for your submission, however the absolute maximum allowable run time is 5 minutes.

Your submission must contain an original, non-derivative, story. (Please do not "borrow" a concept from a popular Hollywood movie as doing so will disqualify your submission.)

The Screening

The screening of the 9th edition of the SPARTA Film Challenge is scheduled for Sunday April 30, 2017, from 3 pm to 6 pm at the Imagine Cinemas at the St. Laurent Shopping Mall.


for Winter 2017 SPARTA Film Challenge

Welcome, registration for the Winter 2017 SPARTA Film Challenge is open. Please be aware there are a maximum of twenty four (24) screening spots for the event. A maximum of twelve (12) SCREENING registrations will be made available to local Ottawa filmmakers. A SCREENING registration guarantees the submission will be screened. We encourage you to be prepared to register and avoid disappointment. If you have any questions about the registration process, please send an email to the following address: (at)

Filmmaker Registration

To register for the Winter 2017 SPARTA
Film Challenge you will need to create an
EMPTY project in a FilmFreeway
FILMMAKER account. Please see the EASY
step by step process here:
FilmFreeway EMPTY project guide.

How Do I Win?

Story, Story, Story ...

Please consider the content of this article: Top Ten Filmmaking Mistakes

Over eight (8) editions of the SPARTA Film Challenge it has become clear the winning submission has a captivating and compelling story. A quality sound track is also a key component as sound problems are bothersome to everyone.

Planning and preparation go a very long way, especially with respect to developing the script. Find a way to SHOW the audience what you want to communicate. Thus, avoid having a character describe something you could SHOW the audience.

We recommend approaching the creation of your short film in a manner which will allow the viewer to remain entirely immersed in your movie. Anything which causes the viewer to be distracted, such as an unfocused shot, continuity errors or distracting camera movement, should be avoided. Great care should also be taken to include only the elements required to tell the story.

Previous SPARTA Challenges

Filmmakers are preparing for Winter 2017!

The SPARTA Film Challenge has screened almost 200 short films, in movie theatres, and has awarded more than $20,000.00 in prizes since December 2012!


Past Winners

"NERVES." won first place in Winter 2016.

"The Waves." won first place in Summer 2015.

"A.I.P.D." won first place in February 2015.

"OFW" won first place in September 2014.

"Bundle of Joy" won first place in February 2014.

H.I.B.A.C.K won first place in August 2013.

The Right Shoe won first place in January 2013.

Movie Theatre

Rainbow Cinemas

See your short film on the Glorious Silver Screen. Your family and friends can eat popcorn and enjoy a refreshing drink while watching your short film in an actual movie theatre. After the screening you will enjoy an Awards Gala meal at East Side Marios.

Dinner and Awards Gala at East Side Mario's in the St. Laurent Shopping Mall, a short walk from the Imagine Cinemas.

Winter Menu

The fixed price meal includes fountain drink, tea or coffee, salad & garlic home loaf, and Black & White mousse cake. (Gluten Friendly option available) Taxes and tip are included.

Choose one:


Seasonal vegetables, sun-dried tomatoes, sweet peas, herbs, parmesan cheese, extra virgin olive oil, vegetable stock and garlic. Gluten Friendly option available, please ask your server.


Featuring our meatballs simmered in Napolitana sauce, served over spaghettini noodles. Gluten Friendly option available, please ask your server (Available without meatballs).


Pasta stuffed with cheese, tossed with tomato and alfredo sauces, then baked with more cheese.


Char-grilled and served with crisp iceberg lettuce, tomato, and red onion. Served with french fries.

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