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[FILLED] Seeking: Senior Programmer (VSFF Volunteer Position)

About Us

From the organization’s inception in 2005, the Vancouver Short Film Festival put on its first successful festival in 2009 at the Vancity Theatre. Each year, the festival programs around 50 films annually and awards over $15,000 in cash and prizes to BC’s best shorts.

In 2021 VSFF held its very first online edition via Eventive Virtual, screening 61 films over 7 programmes and holding three days of special events, showcasing the best filmmaking talent from around the province.

The 12th Vancouver Short Film Festival will be held January 28 - 30 2022, and we are looking for committed volunteer staff members to add to our stellar team. We are dedicated to working hard to showcase the best shorts in BC, we love watching movies, and most importantly, we like to have fun.

Senior Programmer

Duration: September 2021 – January 2022 Part-Time volunteer commitment with fluctuating schedule depending on the season (busiest months are October through January)

Reports to: Director of Programming, Festival Co-Directors

As the Senior Programmer, you will work in close collaboration with the Director of Programming in the curation of the film programmes that comprise the 2022 Vancouver Short Film Festival. You will assess submitted short film content, co-curate films as part of the festival’s Official Selection, and support the delivery of a schedule of programming that meets VSFF’s mandate of celebrating the best of Canadian short film and elevating emerging talent in order to grow the local film industry.

VSFF is seeking an individual with a diverse perspective on film and filmmaking. Perhaps this wasn’t your first pursuit, or maybe you came into film in a unique way. You may have overcome hurdles to get where you are, or love and create content outside typical narratives. You are someone who loves film, thinks outside the box, and has a distinctive approach to your work, and play.

Duties include:

-Watch and assess short film content submitted to VSFF during our submission period (quantity of content to screen varies per year)

-Intake, analyze and assess film ratings/reviews received from the VSFF pre-screening team to help inform programming decisions

-Collaborate with the Director of Programming in assembling VSFF’s short film programmes for the 2021 event, including film selection, program orders, schedule, etc.

-Assist in drafting acceptance letters, rejection letters to submitted filmmakers as required

-May support Director of Programming in drafting of statements on VSFF festival programming for press releases, festival promotion, and press interviews, and participate in interviews with media leading up to the festival as requested

-At times, support the Festival Directors in developing industry programming (speakers, networking events, etc) where these event needs intersect with your position

-Stay actively engaged in the Vancouver/BC film industry and BC/Canadian film festival circuits, staying informed and current on industry standards and trends

-Act as a representative of VSFF within the community, attending or participating in festivals, screenings, and networking events as available, with the intent of growing VSFF’s network and continuing to develop VSFF’s relationship with the Vancouver film industry and community

-Attend Programming meetings or festival staff meeting as required

- Other related duties as assigned



  • Are passionate about film and the arts community in BC, and attend film festivals, screenings, and arts events on a regular basis.

  • Hold a post-secondary degree in Film Studies or Production, or equivalent combination of education and experience.

  • Possess a minimum of two (2) years experience working in Film Production, Film Studies, Festival Production, and/or Festival Programming, or similar experience.

Other skills that may be helpful in this role include:

  • Strong analytical and evaluative skills, and a strong attention to detail

  • Cultural and community awareness in analyzing film works from the community

  • Strong organization and communication skills

  • Experience analyzing a wide range of genres of cinema and ability to find strengths in most films.

  • Access to the Internet and phone is required.

  • Prior programming experience at another film festival or arts event is an asset, but is not required.

We are committed to diversity and equitable access to opportunities within our organization. We encourage applicants from all backgrounds and lived experience to apply, including those from BIPOC and LGBTQ2S+ communities.


In exchange for your invaluable work, you will receive:

  • A pass to the festival

  • A reference letter from the Director of Programming, if requested

  • Recognition in the official VSFF programme and website

  • The opportunity to maintain the position in subsequent festivals

To apply:

  • Send a copy of your resume and cover letter to

  • Please include answers to the following questions (can be part of cover letter, or separate document):

    • What have been the systemic barriers, difficulties or challenges you have faced in your career?

    • What are the opportunities and privileges that have influenced your career?

Deadline to apply is September 10th, 2021, however applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Only qualified applicants will be contacted for an interview.

For more information on the VSFF, please visit


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