Topic: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Welcome to the 2019 edition of the Bricks in Motion Summer Contest! This year's theme is Past and Future.

The contest will run from NOW (July 8, 2019) through September 2. More details on the exact ending time below. Keep reading for the full rules and information, and let's get this summer contest started!


This year's theme is more concept based, versus previous themes being technically based (Darkness & Light, Movie Magic, etc.). So what does Past and Future mean?

Well, that's up to you! Obviously the terms past and future imply a time which is not the present. And I want you to take full advantage of that. The past had many great tales and legends that we still tell today, or heroes or dragons, ancient peoples and civilizations, worlds unknown to us today. It may even contain some stories never told... who knows what happened in the past if it's not written down! And the future is full of endless possibilities as well! Who knows what mankind will create tomorrow... or alienkind, for that matter.

So the goal here is to create a world that differs from the one we live in. Something imaginative, something unique. It can be based in reality, or totally made up. The past isn't restricted to earth, nor does it the past ever stop. You read the last sentence in the past, and you'll read the next one in the future (I hope).

You may even want to employ some old-timey filmmaking techniques... or invent your own! All this fits within the theme. Be creative and show us your best work.


Prizes for this year's competition are generously provided by our sponsors: Dragonframe, Brickstuff, and!


Dragonframe 4 + Bluetooth Controller

Dragonframe is the premium stop motion animation software that captured Laika's ParaNorman, The Boxtrolls and Disney's Frankenweenie. This software is easy enough for a beginner to learn, but offers a wealth of advanced features sure to meet the needs of any stop motion animator. Software and controller included. For Mac OSX and Windows.

Brickstuff Pico LED Light Board Starter Kit

This versatile kit includes eight Brickstuff Pico LED light boards, perfect for fitting into small spaces. Based in Minnesota, Brickstuff custom manufactures a full line of lighting and automation products for LEGO builders. Brickstuff lights are the smallest commercially available lights for LEGO bricks, so you can put them right inside your bricks, and the wires are thin enough that  you can snap your bricks, plates, and tiles right on top of the wires-- no need to modify your bricks or builds!  Best of all, you don’t need to know electronics to use this system—everything fits together (just like LEGO bricks!), and you can start small and add lights and effects as your collection of creations and MOCs grows. The lights are perfect for use in brickfilms to create just the mood or effect you need.

Phonetic Custom Printed Heads for Animation has created minifig heads with animators in mind! With's phonetic custom printed heads, you can now animate lip syncing in camera! By swapping these heads during filming, the time taken in post-processing is dramatically reduced.  The end result is a more pure film, where it's apparent the animator went the extra mile.


Entries will be judged on criteria including originality, production values (animation, set design, cinematography, sound, etc.), story, and creative interpretation of the theme by the 3 judges. Rather than judging on categories individually, judges will examine how all these elements work together to create a complete film. Films will be discussed and ranked collectively by the judges until a consensus is reached. The top 3 films will eligible for the prize pool. Entries below 10th place will not be publicly ranked.

rioforce is the administrator of Bricks in Motion and brickfilmer himself. He has ranked up a number of awards in Bricks in Motion contests, such as 2015's summer contest Sight & Sound with Sola Luna, and THAC XIII with MECH.

Seán Willis
Aka, Penta is the former administrator of Bricks in Motion and longtime brickfilmer and community member. He manages the Brickfilms Wiki and is a co-host on World of Brickfilms Podcast.

Rachel Dew
Aka, dewfilms, Rachel is a longtime community member and Bricks in Motion moderator with a love of brickfilms and the community since the era. She was also featured in the Bricks in Motion Documentary, directed by Philip Heinrich.


  • All entries must be primarily composed of stop-motion animation. 3D, Flash, or other animation techniques may be used to in addition to stop-motion as long as the finished product is at least roughly 70% stop-motion animation.

  • Entries should use LEGO or similar building toys as primary elements.

  • No mature/explicit content is allowed. This includes, but is not limited to: swearing, excessive/gory violence, overt sexual content, and blatant drug references.

  • Minimum runtime is 1 minute, including any titles and credits. There is no maximum runtime. Remember, it is better to focus on quality and attention to detail than to make a very long and ambitious film, but let the quality suffer. A highly-polished three-minute movie is better than a ten-minute movie that falls apart because the director ran out of time to do it the right way. The judging system won't favor a film for simply being longer, but low production values will hurt a longer film when competing against a shorter film that is better made.

  • Submitted films must be new films, created specifically for this contest.

  • Films may not be posted publicly until after the contest deadline has passed.

  • The entry you submit to the judges must be the entry made publicly available to everyone else. This means you can't submit a rough version for judging then post a polished version you spent more time on as though it were your entry to the contest publicly. You may post reworked versions of your film once contest judging is completed and results have been announced.

  • Entries must contain only images, sounds, music, and story material which you have the rights to distribute -- no copyrighted content to which you do not have the rights may be used. No trademarked properties which might be confused with commercial enterprises may be used. This means you can not use storylines based on characters from Star Wars, Marvel, Ninjago, or other trademarked series. You cannot base your work on copyrighted material; however, old works that are now in the public domain are acceptable source material. All material included in films submitted must be original, or content that you have expressed permission to use. If you use content that is not your own, you must be able to provide proof that you have received permission to include it in your film.  All music must be credited, even if you made it yourself.


The deadline for submissions will be Monday, September 2nd 2019 at 11:59 pm EDT.
Films may be submitted as early as the beginning of July 8th 2019, though they cannot be made public until after the deadline has passed.

To submit your film, send a link to your entry to our BiM Contest forum account by private message.

Our preferred method of submission is unlisted YouTube links. If you do not have a YouTube account, we also accept password-protected Vimeo uploads.


Q: Are we allowed to use the contest logo in our entry? In the credits of our film, for example?
A: Yes, although this is not required. If you want a high-resolution version of the logo to use in the credits of your film, here's a high-res version of the poster.

Q: May we ask contest judges to voice act for our entries?
A: Yes.

Q: Should entries focus on a particular genre?
A: Your film can fall into any story genre you like.

Q: Can we collaborate with others to create an entry?
A: Yes! Collaboration is encouraged. However, we won't be able to divide up the prizes evenly for you, so you'll have to determine who receives the prizes in the case of a win. Entries may be submitted on the basis of one entry per director, so you can help with someone else's entry and still enter a film you've directed.

Q: May we post trailers, images, or other work-in-progress elements of our film publicly on the forum?
A: This is encouraged! Feel free to post about the progress on your film in the forums. You can even make a thread devoted to your progress on a film if you like.

Q: Can we use some non-LEGO elements in building our sets and characters?
A: Yes. The intention of the rule is to put the focus of films made for the competition on LEGO animation. Just remember that the name of the game here is creativity, so if you think you can achieve your shots using LEGO, you might be better off doing that.

Q: Are we allowed to release alternate versions of our films at the same time as the version submitted to the contest? (for instance, a version with profanity or other restricted content)
A: In order to maintain the integrity of the judging process, please only release the version you are submitting to the contest publicly at the time the deadline passes. Entrants who violate this rule may be disqualified. If you want to re-release a revised version of your film, you may do so after contest judging is completed and results have been announced.

Q: Are we required to include any "mod elements" like BiM's THAC contest?
A: No. Those are used in THAC to ensure films are created in the 24-hour period. You have three months this time. Even if you did submit a film you began working on before this competition was announced, that would be fine as long as you haven't released it anywhere before this contest, and it fits the theme of this contest.

Q: How fast and loose should I play with the content restriction rules?
A: Ultimately, we want winning entries that won't earn us angry emails from parents, or concern from contest sponsors (present and future) if they win and are celebrated throughout and our social media postings. This community has members of a diverse variety of ages and backgrounds in it, so for a competition we want to be respectful of that. These rules are undoubtedly going to be limitations for some filmmakers, but we believe it's still possible to make compelling, even dramatic stories within these limitations. Potentially, one could approach them as creative limitations that empower the filmmaker to find more original, inventive ways of conveying ideas in a story.

Q: When can we share our films publicly?
A: As soon as the contest deadline passes; here's a countdown clock.

Q: Is this a sci-fi movie contest?
A: NO! Don't let our contest logo influence your artistic vision. Your film can be in whatever style you like, whatever era, whatever genre... it's all up to you!

If you have further questions, feel free to reply in this thread.

Received Entries:

  • megamovieman

  • Hammer7

  • Zach Studios

  • BuildingBlockProductions

  • Kreal Kay

  • AwesomepantsFilms

  • Robukka

  • cracksplatpop

  • Joshua Nelson

  • Duffosaur

  • Corinnecurtis

  • Brickquarium Productions

  • William Osborne

  • BrickAnimator724

  • AoW-Gamer

  • OneDouglas

  • shanewoodsbrs

  • GUATEMAX Animations

  • Super_Squid

  • Chaizin

  • funmiproductions

  • Lainie

Last edited by rioforce (September 2, 2019 (08:30pm))

"Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31b

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Woohoo! It exists. The myth has become fact. Time to get brainstorming....

YouTube | Twitter | Brick à Brack | Discord @ Undershadow#9982
   -- If a frame were worth a dollar, I'd be a millionaire by now --

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Great to see a new spin on the summer contest! I'm sure we are to get some intriguing entries.
Grand sponsors this year as well.

Past & Future, seems to sum up my brickfilming procrastination.

Yes, it's homemade, fresh from the toaster oven.

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Woo hoo! Really looking forward to this one, and am glad to see a more concept-based theme this time around. mini/bigsmile

Also, can't wait until Spetember 2rd mini/tongue

Good luck everyone!

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Love the logo, who knows I may do a summer contest entry for once.

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future



Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

One question, is there a limmit on how long your video is?


Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Yeees! I can't wait to start!

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future


Currently working on:

     →  mini/smile ONCE BEFORE                           BYU
mini/cat RANCHO                                                      1
mini/troll ONCE BEFORE                                        2
mini/devil GARMADON: El Oni y el Dragon          3

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future


Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

creation wrote:

One question, is there a limmit on how long your video is?

There is not a limit to how long your movie can be, although, if you make a shorter movie with more quality it will have a better chance of winning rather than a long, long movie with poor quality. mini/wink

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Oh man, i'm excited, the possibilities are endless!!!!!  (mind exploding)   ;P

cracksplatpop studios

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

creation wrote:

One question, is there a limmit on how long your video is?

PlasticPoint is right, you can make the brickfilm as long as you want!

"Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31b

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Can't wait! Seems like a lot of fun. But why can't I post it publicly before "the deadline"?  Like brawl etc. once you're done with your film you just post it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

With God All Things Are Possible ~Matthew 19:26

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

BRAWL was the same way. You can’t post your movie until after the deadline in any contest. Wait until after the results to release a version edited in any way.

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

PlasticPointProductions wrote:
creation wrote:

One question, is there a limmit on how long your video is?

There is not a limit to how long your movie can be, although, if you make a shorter movie with more quality it will have a better chance of winning rather than a long, long movie with poor quality. mini/wink

Thanks but the story is the most important part, if you make a short clip it won't have much story and i've got a great story.


Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

I want to know, how many people are going to do a brickfilm involving a time machine? Bet its a lot.

Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future


Re: Summer Contest: Past and Future

Would it count if I did something that was technically set in modern times, but the characters travel to different times/worlds?

"I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us." - Romans 8:18