February 2, 2018


Filmmakers have the power to change the trajectory of human life on our water planet — from destruction to revitalization! Submit a short film for the Ocean Film Challenge, 7 minutes or under, on the impact humans have on the ocean and the actions individuals can take to save the ocean … and the humans who depend on it. The films will be juried by an industry panel and the top 8 films will be deemed the finalists films. The finalist films will premiere at DCEFF, the world’s largest environmental film festival on Friday, March 23, at 7:00 PM at the Naval Heritage Center. Following the premiere, awards will be announced for Best Film: Jury Choice, Honorable Mention, Best in Score, Cinematography, Sound and Editing. After DCEFF, the films will travel the festival circuit as “Dr. Sylvia Earle’s Ocean Film Challenge”. Additional screenings include (but not limited to) IWFF and AudFest. The films submitted to this challenge will be used across multiple distribution channels to move people to act in support of the ocean. The global audience will be allowed to vote for the finalist films between June 1-8, 2018. The top audience voted films will be announced on June 8 at the OFC screening at AudFest in LA.


The Ocean Film Challenge Goal: the creation of numerous short films that have the potential to go viral on social media to affect change, with positive content including all three of these elements:

  • Inspiring love for the beauty of the ocean and the amazing variety of ocean creatures
  • Identifying the impact that consumer choices have on the health of the ocean
  • Encouraging viewers to take positive action, and offering concrete action steps

Your films should address at least one of the problems the ocean faces including:

  • Overfishing
  • Plastic Pollution
  • Ocean Acidification
  • Sea Temperature Rise
  • Lack of Marine Protected Areas

Your film should address at least one action individuals and communities can take to mitigate the problem. Examples:

  • Stop eating seafood. Or only eat sustainably farmed seafood.
  • Stop the use of single-use plastics. Saying no to straws and plastic bags is good start.
  • Reduce our carbon footprint and demand that our societies return to sustainable carbon levels.
  • Support policies that fund climate change research.
  • Create marine protected areas so that the ocean can recover.

Entries will be evaluated based on the following judging criteria:

* Creativity (45%)

* Technical Merit (30%)

* Adherence to the Assignment (25%)


Best Film in Competition: Jury Choice wins $1,000 + 2-round trip tickets on Singapore Airlines* + a meeting with Dr. Sylvia Earle.

Best Film in Competition: Audience Choice wins $1,000 + an all-inclusive 7-day diving trip at VOLIVOLI Beach Resort Fiji for 2.

2nd place audience choice: $150

3rd place audience choice: $100

About the Best Film in Competition Jury Choice prizes: Includes 2 roundtrip airline tickets anywhere Singapore Air flies. Example: SFO to Bali. (One layover or less.) The Best Film in Competition Jury Choice also wins a meeting with Dr. Sylvia Earle (Time/Location TBD) and $1,000 cash.

About the Best Film in Competition Audience Choice: The most voted films wins an all-inclusive 7-day diving trip at VOLIVOLI Beach Resort Fiji for 2. The all-inclusive package includes 7 nights in their Premium Ocean View Studio Bure, two 10 tank diving packages and a 7-day meal plan for two. Check out the opportunity here:https://www.volivoli.com/

All 8 finalist filmmakers win: an autographed photography book by Dr. Earle and Force Fins autographed by Dr. Earle. The finalist filmmakers also receive two film festival passes to attend IWFF and two festival passes to attend AudFest. (DCEFF is free to attend and does not require a pass.)



2 thoughts on “Submit for the Ocean Film Challenge!

  1. Living in coastal areas, the green and hawksbill turtle are the most common in the area and are a key species on the coral reefs, helping to maintain the balance between corals, sponges and algae and playing a crucial role in the health of the ecosystem and the economy of French Polynesia.

  2. Éxito en su actividad… para el próximo año me animaré a participar con nuestro equipo. Gracias por el aporte a la zona del archipiélago Pingüino de Humboldt. Yo acabo de presentar mi tesis de Magister de Gestión Ambiental en esa zona y todos los esfuerzos son bienvenidos.
    Muchas Gracias desde acá mismo. Coquimbo, Chile.

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