Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen

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Children's and Youth Film

Exorcize Me © SooKoon Ang

La Loi du plus fort © Pascale Hecquet

Oberhausen has been presenting special children's and youth film programmes for 40 years now. In fact, the oldest international Children's and Youth Short Film Competition in Germany is held here in Oberhausen. Each year, about 45 films and videos from more than 25 countries are presented, selected by an independent committee from submissions to the German and International Competitions.


A children's jury and a youth jury made up of pupils from Oberhausen judge the programme and select the winners. Cash prizes totalling 3,000 € are awarded. The filmmakers are invited to Oberhausen to present and discuss their films in person - an event that regularly draws applause from both sides.


The competition programmes are compiled for various age groups ranging from three to 16 years of age and are shown on weekday mornings to give school classes the opportunity to attend. The Children's and Youth Film Competition is one of the most popular sections of the Festival. 


Contact: Franziska Ferdinand

40 years of children's cinema


In 1978, a handful of works from Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany were shown in the children's programme at the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. This was something new – and really hit the spot. Special programmes on children's films from Finland, China and the GDR were presented. A competition was set up. In 2017, the 25th children's and youth jury meets up to judge 48 short films and award prizes to the best works. To mark the anniversary, the Short Film Festival is showing two programmes consisting of highlights and prize-winners from the past four decades. They include works from the festival archive, a film from the first year of the children's programmes (De Speelmeters), and different genres, countries of production and themes. A taste of what short film for children in Oberhausen was, is, can be.

De Speelmeters © Hans Hylkema

Saturday, 13 May, 10.30 h, Lichtburg

Anniversary programme for ages 10 and over; with films from Brazil, Mexico, the Netherlands, Germany, USA, Hungary, Canady, Norway


Sunday, 14 May, 10.30 h, Lichtburg

Anniversary programme for ages 6 and over; with films from Austria, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Japan, Switzerland, Israel

Video Walk

from Thursday, 11 May 2017


on your smartphone or tablet, walking from Lichtburg Filmpalast to Zentrum Altenberg

#videowalkoberhausen or on our website



Pupils from Oberhausen invite visitors of the Short Film Festival to follow their Video Walk. Tutored by media educators Julia Sandforth and Christiane Wittenborn, a group of pupils of the Gesamtschule Osterfeld discover their city in a new and intense way. The collaborative drafting of stories, finding a narrative voice, staging them in a public place and handling image composition and film production were the priorities of the workshop’s creative process. On the one hand, the cinematic work displayed on the smartphone or tablet navigates between festival locations, on the other it follows the story created by the pupils – the inner city of Oberhausen explored on two levels. The individual walk through the city blends with the filmed scenes. This shifting of boundaries encourages participation, toys with our perceptions, blurs the boundaries between film and reality. The film outlives the festival.

You can download the walking video hier: original version, small version 

If you want to stream the walk, please press "play"-button in the embedded video below.

Youth Cinema inclusive


An inclusive programme for all screenings of the Youth Film Competition –12+, 14+, 16+– with subtitles, sign-language interpreters and audio description. Supported by Aktion Mensch.


Dates and times: see the timetable

Lichtburg Filmpalast

Kindergarten programme: Films and Games


Films and a programme of activities for the little ones age three and older. In cooperation with emek-Kindergarten Oberhausen and supported by Integrationsrat Oberhausen.


12 May, 10.30 h

Lichtburg Filmpalast

free admission

Seeing the Other


A cooperative project between the Festival and the Youth Parliament of Oberhausen is on the starting blocks. A lecture with a film programme about the relationship between politics and film will provide some orientation, just in time for state elections in NRW.


13 May, 14.30 h

Lichtburg Filmpalast