Target and Sony are asking amateur animators to create original webisodes involving Spider-Man in honor of next Friday’s release of the last film in the current trilogy, Spider-Man 3.

The episodes can be stop motion, 3D animation, cell animation, or live action (but live action can only utilize official Spider-Man figurines) and must be between 15 seconds and 2 minutes long. (Read the contest rules for more details.)

Why would you want to do this? The three winners will have their shorts appear on the Spider-Man 3 DVD. The top five finalists also be flown out to the Los Angeles Film Festival and the top ten will receive Target gift cards and “Sony prize packs,” but I think getting your animated short on a guaranteed blockbuster DVD is the key point here.

For those of us who can’t animate a flipbook, you can watch and rate the submissions as they come in. The contest only started this morning, but there’s already 17 webisodes available for viewing on the site. Rating requires registration, which is made slightly less irritating by the fact that people who register and sign in become eligible for daily gift card, prize pack, and film festival trip raffles (so you don’t even have to be an animator to get the same prizes as the finalists–awesome).

On May 20-28, public voting will take place to determine who gets on the DVD after this round of rating determines the finalists.

The contest is only live for one week, so submit your short by Thursday.

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