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University to sponsor Best East Anglian film award at inaugural Suffolk short film festival

27 Apr 2021 4:00PM

The University will be sponsoring the best East Anglian Film award at the Suffolk Shorts film festival taking place this autumn. The category is open to filmmakers based in the region or those telling stories about East Anglia.

The short film festival will run from 8th to the 10th October 2021 at the Ipswich Film Theatre and online at IFT@Home. The other four categories are: Best drama; Best documentary; Best art and performance film; and Best animation.

Alexandra Leaney, Senior Lecturer and Course Leader in Digital Film production and Screenwriting at the University said "We are delighted that Suffolk Shorts is launching in Ipswich this year, and that the School of Engineering, Arts, Science and Technology has the opportunity to support the festival by sponsoring the East Anglian Film Award. It's a great opportunity for students and those who are already involved have really enjoyed the professional experience.”

Co-founder of Suffolk Shorts, Claire Whittenbury, is a guest lecturer on the Screenwriting Short Film Module at the University. Together with co-founder Rachel Aldridge, Suffolk Shorts are keen to support students by offering them places on the festival screening panel as well as contributing to their blog and social media.

Recent graduate Hebe Dobson-Mouawad said “Claire and Rachel at Suffolk Shorts have supported me both as a student and as an alumni of the Screenwriting degree at the University of Suffolk. They have provided me with the opportunity to interview film industry leaders, increasing my understanding of the medium of short film, as well as write about a subject that I am deeply passionate about. Being a writer for Suffolk Shorts has been an invaluable experience and one that I will cherish.”

Benjamin Jay (Digital Filmmaking Course at the University of Suffolk and Suffolk Shorts Screening Panel) said "Working on the screening panel has developed my critical skills. Watching, critiquing, and discussing the films has made me think and take more notice of the individual crafts that are used in filmmaking."

Claire Whittenbury and Rachel Aldridge added“Short film script writing is an incredibly exacting skill, we’re always in awe when someone pulls it off. We very much hope that one day we’ll see graduates from University of Suffolk submitting films to our festival - as well as other festivals!"

To find out more about the Suffolk Shorts film festival, please visit 


University of Suffolk Press Office