The Disability Film Challenge


The Disability Film Challenge is a 48 Hour short film competition that has been established in association with prestigious organizations such as the  Media Access Awards and the HollyShorts Film Festival. It is a competition in which entrants are allotted two days to complete production of their entry into the competition. Among other prizes, winners will have their shorts screened at the Hollyshorts Film Festival in the famous TCL Chinese Theater.

The film challenge’s purpose is to motivate disabled and non-disabled film makers to be proactive in the film industry and to supply them with a means of exposure for themselves and their projects.

Inspiration behind the challenge.

“I have been a working actor for thirteen years, on such shows as “Boardwalk Empire”, “The Sopranos”, and “Private Practice”. As a disabled person myself, I rarely see disability present either in front of or behind the camera. As a producer, I realized that I have the power to change that. Since then, I have produced a multitude of projects and enlisted in the PGA.

I want this film challenge to empower disabled filmmakers, by taking their careers into their own hands with the support of seasoned veterans. Also creating a gateway for more exposure for people with disabilities in the media.” NicNovicki, Founder

On top of thematic and story rules, entries must include elements that, at the very least, acknowledge disability to create awareness of these unique stories that are not being told. Entries are strongly encouraged to include a disabled actor, director, writer, and/or producer.

You don’t have to be disabled to enter the challenge!!! You just need an actor, writer, director, producer, and or crew member with a disability on your team.

The Oscars didn’t mention Disability and or the lack of inclusion, and they don’t intend to. Let’s make it on our own! Express yourself through a short film in the challenge. Go to to enter this year’s challenge before March 30th.

“My acting career has never been more jumpstarted than anything else. I’m now creating my own projects and opportunities not only for myself but others as well, all thanks to the 48-Hour Disability Film Challenge! Also, be sure to add subtitles to your films– a wish from a deaf man.”


Be sure to read all the rules here:!prizes-and-rules/c1t6b

The Winning Categories include Best Film, which will be awarded a Dell Workstation, a lunch and/or Skype meeting with Roy Ashton, Head of the TV Literary & Packaging Dept. at The Gersh Agency. Ashton functions in all areas of Television, helping clients sell shows and package projects at the major networks, major cable and premium cable outlets. Some of the shows he has been involved with are: CASTLE, GAME OF THRONES, BLUEBLOODS, THE KILLING, FALLING SKIES, THE MIDDLE, POWER, and many more. They will also have their film screened at the 11th annual Hollyshorts Film Festival at the TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood in August 2016. *The lunch meeting and/or Skype meeting if the winner is out of town will come with no strings attached and will be strictly for advice. Mentors will not be able to accept any unsolicited materials.

There are also Winners and great prizes for best Filmaker, Actor and Media Award.


To register for the Contest, follow these Official Rules and the instructions found on Registration must be fully completed by 11:59 p.m. PDST on Thursday, March 31st, 2016.

Registration fees are as follows:

  • EARLY BIRD ENTRY FEE: $30 per Entrant (defined below) January 21st, 2016, through February 17th, 2016;
  • REGULAR SUBMISSION FEE: $45 per Entrant from February 18th, 2016 through March 13th, 2016;
  • LATE SUBMISSION FEE: $60 if received March 14th, 2016 through March 30th, 2016.

Contest Begins! The Production Period commences Friday, April 1st, 2016 (at 2:01 p.m. PDST/ 5:01 p.m. EDST) and ends Sunday, April 3rd, 2016 (at 2:00 p.m. PDST/ 5:00 p.m. EDST).

disabilityfilmchalleng 1 - The Disability Film Challenge

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