Quiet on the Set! Film Festival

brought to you by Wharton Studio Museum

2024 Festival Details

View/Download the 2024 flyer.

Registration: REGISTER HERE
DEADLINE: Monday, April 22
Registration is not a commitment to submit but does help us plan the Screening and Awards Ceremony and contact entrants with news

Submission: SUBMIT HERE
DEADLINE: Monday, May 20
Rules & Regulations are listed on the submission website

Screening & Awards Ceremony
Saturday, June 8 @ 2 PM, Cinemapolis, 120 East Green St., Ithaca NY
Join us for a screening of the films, followed by an awards ceremony for the top three entries

Thank you to our Producing Partner Story House Ithaca 


Inspired by our region’s role in early moviemaking, Quiet on the Set! is a terrific opportunity for local youth to showcase their creativity by making short silent films. Films are reviewed by a jury of local educators and arts professionals.

Prizes are awarded to the top three entries, which are revealed each year at a Screening & Awards Ceremony at local independent movie theatre Cinemapolis in downtown Ithaca.

Registration required — No filmmaking experience necessary

• Open to youth (ages 11-18) from anywhere in the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, and Central NY regions
• Submissions may be made by an individual or group
• Runtime must be 1-5 minutes in length
• Films must be silent:
     - NO spoken dialogue; intertitles/title cards can be used
     - Music soundtrack & instrumental sound effects must be original or public domain
• Films must include at least one title card
• Films must include credits
• Films must be in black & white; use of hue is accepted
• Films can include animation
• NO explicit content 


Thank you to Presenting Sponsor Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College for their continued support (2019 - Present) 


WSM is thrilled to continue our short silent film festival for youth — 2024 marks our 6th year! 

The festival began in 2017 with three submitted films and was co-hosted by Cinemapolis. While we skipped 2018, the fest came back strong in 2019 with sixteen submitted films and sponsorship support from the Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College which also hosted the screening and awards ceremony in the Park Auditorium on IC’s campus. In 2020, due to the pandemic, we had to pivot and produce the festival as a virtual event, and we were so grateful to everyone who took part during such a complicated time. 

In 2021 WSM & Ithaca High School collaborated on the virtual soft premiere of Quiet on the Set! exclusively with Ithaca High School Media Arts students. Our filmmakers were approaching the end of an unprecedented school year, one in which their lives differed distinctly from any expectations they might have had, and they had a lot to express. Some of the films were funny, or fantastical, some dealt directly with issues of mental health and boredom or monotony, all of them were wonderful, and we felt honored to watch. 2022 found us back in-person at Cinemapolis with a wonderful slate of submissions. We took a break in 2023 and are back in 2024 with producing partner Story House Ithaca.

Throughout the years, our goals for the film festival have remained the same: to introduce silent filmmaking as a form of visual storytelling to young people, and to encourage and celebrate their ideas and imagination. Quiet on the Set! is an opportunity for local youth to create something and then have the fun of screening and celebrating their work with audience comprised of family, friends, and jury members, and perhaps win a prize in the process!

We hope to continue the festival and be able to add to this History section!

View films from past festivals: Youtube

Past Winners


1st Prize

YOU'VE DONE IT THIS TIME directed by Marcella W.

2nd Prize

THE BACKGROUND MUSIC directed by Evan K. J.

3rd Prize

WRITER'S BLOCK directed by Robin A.

Honorable Mentions

THE THING directed by Julian R.
A CRUMMY CRIME directed by Cole R.



1st Prize


2nd Prize

DINNER TIME directed by Suraphael Barton

3rd Prize

TO GRANDMA'S HOUSE WE GO? directed by Kieran Shulman and Lili Rotondi

Honorable Mentions

304 directed by Alexandra St. Pierre-Nguyen
BETRAYAL directed by Marlin Hamm


Get Involved

We would love to hear from you! 

If you are a teacher, educator, or other organizer who would like to collaborate with us on the festival. Teachers have made past festivals a class project or elective extra credit. This symbiosis brings us more submissions while celebrating and showcasing student work in a unique, exciting way that encourages student creativity and exceeds simply receiving a grade.

If you are a local arts or education organization, such as a library, and you would like to be added to our list and receive future festival announcements.

If you would like to discuss volunteering for or creating an internship with the festival.