a welcome letter from

Sabrina Dridje


Over these last months, your stories have defied so many limitations—of lockdown, of geography, of the world. With this in mind, I am inspired to announce that the 42nd Annual Telly Awards is now open for entries with a campaign dedicated to the way Your Stories Defy The Limits. 

This year has been like no other. Despite the immense changes and challenges we have all faced, many inspiring feats of creativity have persevered, both because of and in response to this changing world. We have seen new workflows to accommodate remote production, spikes in the use of animation in the absence of live production and continued reminders that video and television on all platforms can be used to share, educate, and inform important global and societal issues. Through this unstable time, we have seen, time and time again, that your stories have both defied the limits of deep challenges and also embraced opportunity. 

We spent the summer talking to many of you to ask how you have been able to pivot your work so quickly, while maintaining the quality your community and clients have expected. These conversations informed the way The Telly Awards will honor your work this season with the introduction of new categories that reflect your ingenuity, collaboration, and determination. Our suite of new categories include  Remote Directing & Production, Virtual Events, and Use of Stock Footage, along with expanded categories for Animation and for Galleries/Museums who have been sharing culture with us all online. 

We too are adapting to make sure we continue to serve you, not least ensuring our popular global screening events continue online. We will be curating various programs throughout the season to continue to showcase your work to an online audience. Keep an eye out on social media and subscribe to our newsletter to stay in the loop on dates, new partners, the program and live Q&As with some of the featured work! 

Last but not least, we continue to invite a diverse selection of industry leaders to the Telly Awards Judging Council which this season includes experts from Vimeo, NBC Digital and Ariana Huffington’s, Thrive Global. 

From all of us here at The Telly Awards, the very best of luck—and as always, do not hesitate to contact me directly at sabrina@tellyawards.com.


  • quick fact 01

    key dates

    The Telly Awards honor excellence in video and television across all screens.

    We are currently reviewing categories, expanding the Telly Awards Judging Council and programming a number of partner events throughout the year. Check back soon for updates on this but here are key dates for your diary!

    Entries open: October 20th 2020

    Early Deadline: December 11th 2020

    Final Deadline: February 26th 2021

    Extended Deadline: April 2nd 2021

    Winners announced: May 2021

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    what we honor/our history

    The Telly Awards was founded in 1979 to honor excellence in local, regional and cable television commercials with non-broadcast video and television programming added soon after. With the recent evolution and rise of digital video (web series, VR, 360 and beyond), the Telly Awards today also reflects and celebrates this exciting new era of the moving image on and offline.

    The Telly Awards annually showcases the best work created within television and across video, for all screens. Receiving over 12,000 entries from all 50 states and 5 continents, Telly Award winners represent work from some of the most respected advertising agencies, television stations, production companies and publishers from around the world. The Telly Awards recognizes work that has been created on the behalf of a client, for a specific brand and/or company (including your own) or self-directed as a creative endeavor.

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    The Telly Awards are judged by members of the Telly Awards Judging Council, a group of over 200+ working industry who have previously won the Telly Awards highest accolade and as such, have demonstrable expertise in the categories they review.

    All members of the Telly Awards Judging Council must apply and be accepted after their credentials are verified. To see our judges, find out more and to apply, click here.

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    Telly Award Winners

    We are very proud to include the following amongst previous Telly Award Winners:

    AOL Studios, BET Networks, Bloomberg, CBS Interactive, Comcast, Conde Nast, DigiDojo, Discovery Communications, ESPN, FleishmanHillard, Fox, HBO, Hearst, HOBO, HuffPost, Indigo Films, IW Group, Microsoft, MLB, NBC, Ogilvy and Mather, Refinery29, SapientNitro, Story House, Team Coco Digital, The Guardian, The History Channel, Time Warner, Tiny Hero, Trailer Park, Viacom, VML, WSJ

    See our winners gallery.

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official partners

The Video Consortium

The Video Consortium is a nonprofit global network that supports, connects, and develops the next generation’s visual journalists and nonfiction filmmakers. Uniting thousands of nonfiction storytellers from over a hundred cities across the globe, we’re a grassroots organization working to level the industry playing field through community events, authentic relationship-building, supportive mentorship, shared industry resources, and professional development. We actively champion compassionate storytelling and diverse voices to promote a more inclusive, kind, and just world.

Stash. Work smarter and stay inspired with instant and unlimited access to the largest online library of Animation, VFX and Motion Design. Stream, search and build your own playlists from thousands of exceptional TV and cinema spots, music videos, virals, broadcast and title designs, game cinematics, and short films complete with production notes, credits, toolkits and links for every project. Each monthly issue also includes advanced training courses from Digital Tutors and free MP3 music tracks.

Ghetto Film School is an award-winning non-profit film school who educates, develops and celebrates the next generation of storytellers. 2020 sees its 20th anniversary, and it has expanded from the original South Bronx, NY, location to LA (2014) and London (2020).

The NAB Show is the world’s largest broadcast, audio & video event and your most comprehensive resource for next- generation training and tools. From conception to consumption, the NAB Show has proudly served for more than 80 years as the incubator for excellence – helping to breathe life into content everywhere.

A media production marketplace, Storyhunter connects the world’s leading brands and media companies with over 20,000 freelance video creators across 180 countries. The Storyhunter platform allows companies to manage their freelance networks, post assignments and receive story ideas, hire creators, and message freelancers anywhere in the world at any time. With this technology and extensive community, clients can assemble an international production crew or newsroom in a matter of minutes.

ProductionHUB is a global network of local crew and vendors that serves the film and video production industry. Find and hire anything you need, whether it’s a cameraman for one day, a video editor for one month or a full-time producer.

A media production marketplace, The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) champions the future of storytelling by connecting artists with essential resources at all stages of development and distribution. IFP fosters a vibrant and sustainable independent storytelling community, represents a growing network of 10,000 storytellers around the world, and plays a key role in developing 350 new feature and documentary works each year. During its 40-year history, IFP has supported over 10,000 projects and offered resources to more than 30,000 filmmakers, including Debra Granik, Miranda July, Michael Moore, Dee Rees, and Benh Zeitlin.

Social Media Week (SMW) is one of the world’s premier conferences and industry news platforms for professionals in media, marketing and technology. The mission is to give professionals at the intersection of media, marketing and technology the insights, ideas and opportunities they need to advance themselves and their organizations in a globally connected world.

We Are Parable are an award winning film exhibition company that provide audiences with opportunities to experience Black Cinema in culturally relevant, memorable and unique ways. Formed in 2013 by husband and wife team Anthony and Teanne Andrews, they have worked with Disney, the British Film Institute, StudioCanal, Altitude, as well as filmmakers such as Ryan Coogler, Idris Elba, Amma Asante and Academy Award winner Spike Lee.

In July 2020, they were the first company to deliver an online takeover of the British Film Institute which celebrated Black British Film. Called “Who We Are”, the week long project featured curated film collections, conversations with established and emerging Black directors and a competition to find the next generation of Black storytellers in the UK.