The Nickel’s 48HR Horror challenge is back this October, starting on Friday the 13th!

Write, shoot, and edit a horror film, 5 minutes or less, in 48 hours from October 13 to 15, 2017. Each team will receive an email stating the specific prop and line of dialogue that must appear in your film to have it qualify for the prizes. Be creative in how you incorporate them!


To register by 6 pm on Thursday, October 12, we need:
– An email to
– Use the subject line: 48HR HORROR CHALLENGE 2017
– Send a team name, your email & phone contact
– Your team members (but this can change)
– Your social media info (so we can follow and retweet your challenge posts)


Teams must write, shoot, edit and deliver their films within a forty-eight [48] hour period, from 8pm, Friday, October 13, to Sunday, October 15, at 8pm.

The Nickel will provide one line of dialogue and one prop to each team via email by 6 pm Friday, October 13, 2017. Teams MUST use these two elements in their film.

All teams must register through our email submission process no later than 1pm on October 12, 2017. (Available for registration on September 29, 2017. There is no fee to register.)

All submissions must include the Nickel logo and Bumper at the beginning of each film. The Nickel Film Festival will provide the bumper.

Films can be no longer than five [5] minutes, excluding bumper and credits.

This film can be shot in any format the team desires, including iPhones or other mobile devices, webcams or any sort of non-traditional filming device.

Teams must upload their completed, password-protected films to Vimeo as well as send The Nickel the Vimeo link, password and team submission form by no later than 8pm on October 15, 2017. **please remember to allow for conversion time**

How to submit

Please upload your film as .mov files using h.264 compression onto Vimeo and then send us an e-mail with the password so we can access it.

Info on preparing your file:

We will also accept files submitted via Dropbox.

By submitting your film you give The Nickel Independent Film Festival express permission to screen your film at other Nickel events and in promotional materials for the duration until the next annual Horror Challenge.

The winner of Scariest Film receives the top prize and a screening at the Nickel’s Annual Late Night Horror Show during the 2018 Festival! Every team that participates gets a waiver to submit their film to the 2018 Festival for free, where we have a special horror screening.

Each team understands that this year prizes are awarded based on jury decision. An audience choice award will be determined by ballot, during the ‘48-Hour Horror Challenge Screening’ event.

This is a Horror Film Challenge and we ask that all films represent that genre by staying within its parameters.

Each team can use their prop and line as creatively as they choose. Note, however, there is a prize for most creative use of both components.

Prize categories this year:
Best Use of Prop
Best Use of Line
Best Film (our jury’s top prize)
Audience Choice (voted on at the screening)

We ask that each team document the film experience and share behind-the-scenes pictures and comments on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Please include the handle, @nickelfestival and the hashtag #NickelHorrorso we can share and RT.

Any other questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!


We’ll watch all the films at The Rock House on Thursday, October 26, 2017. Doors open at 9pm, screening starts at 10, and then Black Market Hard-Tack will play a live set! Admission is $5 at the door.

The top prize winner will have their film screen in June during our 18th Nickel Film Festival on our Horror Night and the team will receive a prize to support their next film.


These are useful links to help you during the challenge.