Twenty-five years ago, actor and director John Polson created a short-film festival to provide a platform for talented filmmakers and storytellers. Today, Tropfest is Australia’s most prestigious short-film competition and the largest short-film festival in the world.

Celebrating its 25th birthday at a new venue, Parramatta Park, Tropfest will showcase the films of its 16 finalists, chosen from among hundreds of local and international entries.

The short-listed films range in genre from romance and documentary to drama, but all incorporate Tropfest’s Signature Item – this year it’s a pineapple – to ensure unique content made specifically for the festival.

One film, Meat and Potatoes, is about a vegan couple facing the apocalypse without food. Another, Diary of a Youtuber, examines the rise and fall of a popular YouTube star and explores online bullying. Can’t I Sh#t in Peace? recounts the reality of one working mother and her desire for a moment of silence.

This year’s judging panel includes acclaimed actor Sam Neill, director George Miller and head of jury, actor Rose Byrne.

There’ll also be live music during the day, plus a screening of all 24 past winners of Tropfest. Food and drink will be available for purchase.

The free, all-inclusive screening kicks off at dusk, but with a crowd of more than 70,000 expected, be sure to reserve your seats early.

Saturday February 11, from 12pm.

tropfest.com.au