AMV competition

Heroes Comic Con Finland 2024 AMV competition

What are AMV’s? 

Anime (or animation) Music Videos are forms of video art, made by combining elements from an animated series or movie with a song. The goal is to edit a video, where the chosen music track blends in seamlessly with the video material in the style of a music video. The videos are not locked to any given genre. In the end, there are as many interpretations as there are source material combinations. An AMV creator may, based on personal preferences, choose to focus for example on storytelling, visual aspects, comedic value or technical editing quality. In addition to the most common video sources, like animated series and movies, we are also allowing material from games to be used in this competition. 

AMV

Competition schedule

  • Entry opens on Jan 12th 2024 
  • Entry closes on March 31st 2024 at 11:59 PM 
  • Possibility for corrections to previously sent videos until April 2nd 2024, 11:59 PM 
  • Preliminary judging rounds on April 3rd through 23rd 2024 
  • Results for preliminary judging sent to the competitors no later than April 24th 2024 
  • Competition finals on Sunday May 12th 2024 at Heroes Comic Con in Tampere 

How to enter

The competition is open for everyone to submit animation or game music videos. Should the amount of entries exceed 22, the competition will include a preliminary judging round. Send your entries no later than March 31st 2024 by 11:59 PM, and you will take part in the competition and possible preliminary round. All competitors whose entries are approved for the finals will receive free entry to the event on the finals day and we warmly recommend attending the event in person. Should a competitor not be able to attend, awards will be sent via mail after the event. The competitor may also name another person to accept the award for delivery on their behalf. 

The entry videos must be sent via our Xfer file transfer service, with detailed instructions below. Videos sent by any other means will not be accepted. Videos that have been featured in any other AMV competition finals previously will not be accepted. You may publish the video before the event if you so wish, however we recommend delaying this until after the event, to help maintain the moment of surprise. 

Every competitor may send a maximum of two (2) entries to the competition. Videos made in cooperation with multiple people are allowed, but these will count as one entry for every person in the group. 

The competitor may include additional pictures, videos or descriptions of the editing process. These may contain details on any parts of the edit which the competitor feels deserve additional attention. This material will be provided to the judges alongside the video. The AMV manager reserves the right to make changes to these attachments if deemed necessary.  

Should the AMV manager notice any problems with the entry video or other details, we will contact the competitor with a possibility to make corrections to the entry. 

The competitor must provide their real name for the organizers. The entry itself can be submitted with a nickname.  

Organizers of the competition, or their family members, may not take part in the competition. 

REQUIREMENTS

Content requirements

The majority of video content (60%) must be material from an animation or game. The material may originate from any country. Original and self-made animated material is also allowed, but it will be evaluated from the same perspective as other videos. Using multiple different original video sources is allowed.  

The majority of audio content (60%) must be music, but adding short parts of dialogue or other audio material is accepted. Audio material cannot be entirely based on, for example, trailers, commercials or dubs, as these do not fit the definition of a music video. 

To clarify, 40% of the video and audio content may be, for example, dialogue between characters, trailer-like storytelling or live action material. 

The video may not contain extra logos or subtitles. Also, do not add text to the video that contains the name of the video, the competitor(s) name or source materials. Automatic watermarks from editing software are also not allowed. The competitor may add custom subtitles for use in cases such as dialogue between characters or song lyrics. The organizers will create separate intro videos for each entry. These intros will include details on the name of the video and the competitor’s name or nickname, as per their preference.  

Adult material (K-18 Finnish standard) is not allowed in the competition. Should the video contain unsuitable elements, the AMV manager will inform the competitor. If you are uncertain about the suitability of any material you plan to use, you may contact us beforehand to check. The organizers may add content warnings to videos when deemed necessary.  

The length of each video must be a minimum of one minute 30 seconds (1:30) and a maximum of five minutes (5:00). 

Technical requirements

Please use the best possible source materials available. We will accept most common file types, with mp4 being the recommended type. The organizers may convert the video to mp4 format if deemed necessary to ensure functionality. Should this be necessary, the organizers can not be held responsible for potential loss of fidelity. Recommended resolutions for videos are 1920×1080 (widescreen) or 1920×800 (cinematic widescreen). The smallest acceptable resolution is 480×360. The refresh rate of videos should be either 24, 25 or 30 fps. Please also make sure that the audio material is of sufficiently high quality. 

Video inspection

We recommend sending entries as early as possible. The AMV manager will check each video upon arrival to verify compliance with the rules and technical functionality. We will inform the competitor upon any problems found during this verification process. The competitor has a chance to make any required corrections to their entry until April 2nd, 11:59 PM. If these required corrections are not made and sent by this time, the entry will be discarded from the competition. Entries that have been featured in any previous AMV competition finals are automatically discarded, and may not be corrected for compliance. 

JUDGING, AWARDS AND OTHER INSTRUCTIONS

Judging process and the points system

After April 2nd, all videos will be sent to the team of judges for scoring and if necessary, sent to preliminary rounds. All entries will be provided to the judges without information on the competitor’s name or nickname. The judges will not know the identity of the competitors until all of their results are final. During preliminary rounds, judges will choose which entries will be featured in the finals on Sunday May 12th 2024. All competitors will receive information on their personal preliminary round results by April 24th, whether they have been selected into the finals or not. 

The judges will provide scoring points in three categories: 

Music video concept / mood: rhythm, internal sync, matching of music and video material; relevance of song lyrics in video scenes, harmony between music and video, selection of scenes, matching scenery selections for differing musical elements within the song, and effectiveness of the work as whole; 0-5 points 

Storytelling / concept: clarity and comprehensibility of the concept or story, originality of the story, concept or idea, narrative process, use of linear or non-linear storytelling, dynamic elements of faster paced videos, importance and functionality of possible voice-overs or sound effects, 0-5 points 

Editing: transitions between scenes, color grading, cuts, effects in relation to source material and music (eg. slow / fast), flow between scenes, possible use of masking, quality and cleanliness of combining source materials, and quality of possible typographies, 0-5 points 

Ties in point scores are quite possible. The points are used solely for choosing entries for the finals and not for choosing individual awards. Judges will create separate evaluation lists for each award. 

Awards

The judges will choose winners of each award from the finalists. These will be awarded at the end of the finals ceremony. The same video cannot receive two judges’ awards. 

Judges’ awards 

  • Best in show 
  • Best hero 
  • Best sidekick 
  • Best villain 
Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) themed awards
  • Best heavy music 
  • Best ballad 
  • Best europop  

 Special awards 

  • Audience choice 

Descriptions of awards

Best in show 

The best in show award belongs to the video which shines in every way and has clearly been crafted to perfection better than any other entry. Effectiveness, topicality, rewatch value, memorability, as well as concept, and story are all key factors. We’re looking for the video which touches the closest to perfection, with very little room for improvement. 

Best hero  

This competition will shine the spotlight on heroes. The concept, music or heroic perspective can be anything the competitor can think of. You may tell a traditional story of a hero based on history or today, of battles against enemies or one’s self, or anything in-between. The key concept is showing the judges a well-balanced work about the chosen hero or heroes.   

Best sidekick 

Sometimes the sidekicks are hidden in the shadow of the hero, but they may also be the key concept of the story, the hero’s right hand, a force of balance or the source of support and care. Convince the judges of the very best sidekick’s stories, where the chosen character or characters have a clear role to play. Due to the wide possibilities of interpretation with this award, may we suggest something: try doing something quite different, something very memorable for our judges.

Best villain 

No heroes without a villain. Choosing the best villain is as complex as the diversity of stories with interesting villains. You might choose a classical villain, but your choice may as well be a character working in the moral gray zone (anti-heroes). Sometimes the difference between a hero and villain is a line drawn in water, perhaps entirely up to the viewers’ interpretation. Create a work where you show the motives of the villain in question and why exactly this villain in their universe brings them into the spotlight. 

Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) themed awards 

The following three awards are limited on the choice of music allowed. The entries for these awards must use song material that has been performed in ESC. The song may be a competing song entry from any attending country, or any other song performed in ESC finals. The list of song entries can be found on Wikipedia at this address, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Eurovision_Song_Contest_entries  

 

ESC: Best heavy music 

Heavy music includes for example rock and heavy metal music. As heavy metal has originally taken inspiration from psychedelic rock and blues rock, these musical genres are also considered valid for this award. All in all, the definition of heavy music is somewhat ambiguous. A good rule of thumb is to define heavy music as the absolute opposite of classical bubblegum pop music.  

ESC: Best ballad 

In its traditional meaning, ballads are used to define songs which tell a small story. A more popular interpretation also defines ballads as songs based on gentler elements and works as opposite to faster paced songs. Ballads are often melancholic in nature, and to avoid a too strict definition, we will also allow power ballads. Show us a work where the mood and feelings are exactly where they should be. 

ESC: Best europop 

This category contains all easy to dance to hit songs and pop hits played at clubs. We will allow lighter and more modern disco hits, as well as the classics from the 80’s. More modern trance and electro-pop songs are also allowed in this category. 

Additional award information 

For all awards, we will look at the complete work as a whole, as well as matching the chosen theme into the concept successfully. Naturally the cleanliness of editing, rhythm, and other classical elements of good music videos will also be looked at. 

All awards will be awarded at the end of the finals show. The finals will also feature an audience choice award, in which people attending the live event can take part with their mobile device. The results of this award will also be presented at the end of the show.  

The organizers reserve the right to make necessary changes as needed. 

The list of judges will be presented at a later date. 

File transfer instructions

The file transfer service for the AMV competition may be found at https://xfer.velhosto.fi 

  • Use the transfer code: comiccon24-amv 
  • Write your email address 
  • In the sender name field, write your own name and nickname. For example, Firstname (nick) Lastname 
  • In the sender reference field, write the following: name of the video, list of source video and audio materials used, any additional information you wish to provide us, and information whether you will be able to attend the finals in person 
  • If you cannot fit all the information necessary in the reference field, you may provide additional information in an attached text file. This is especially prudent in cases where you’re sending multiple videos at once. 
  • When you’ve filled all the information, you can move to the next page to upload your competition video as well as any other materials. You can drag the files directly into the window or use “Add files” to select them from your computer. You may send multiple files at once. 
  • Please use the following file name convention in competition entries: Nickname – Video name 
  • Remember to click the Finish button to finalize sending the files. 
  • Should you have trouble with sending files, please try to use another browser first. 

Handling of personal information and other terms of entry

Personal information of competitors will be used solely by the organizers of the competition and only within the scope necessary for organizing the competition. Personal data will not be stored permanently. The legal entity for handling personal data is Easyfairs Nordic AB (Finnish business ID 2170200-1). The transfer service is operated by Pahalammen Verkot (Finnish business ID 2621053-2).  

By taking part in the competition the competitor accepts the rules in this document. The competitor may not place additional demands on their participation or require changes to the rules. Should the competitor place unreasonable demands on their entry, the entry will be discarded. An entry may also be discarded on the basis of inappropriate or unsportsmanlike behavior. The competitors cannot be held responsible for damages based on incorrect contact information provided, or technical communication issues beyond our control. 

Contact information

Should you have any questions about the competition, please contact our AMV manager at comicconamv@gmail.com 

You may also send questions via the social media channels of Heroes Comic Con Finland.