Film entry regulations

Please note that these regulations may be updated. 

1. General
2. Competitions
3. Submission guidelines and materials
4. Selected films
5. Shipping of prints and videos of selected films
6. Conclusion

1. General

1.1 Objectives
International Film Festival Rotterdam aims to offer a quality selection of worldwide independent, innovative cinema and visual arts. Devoted to offering a platform to and actively supporting independent filmmaking from around the globe, IFFR is the essential hub for discovering film talent and for catching the early buzz on many world and international premieres.

1.2 Dates
The 49th IFFR, organized by Stichting International Film Festival Rotterdam, will be held from 22 January to 2 February 2020.

1.3 Eligibility
Submission to the festival is open to feature films, creative documentaries, experimental films, short films and innovative visual productions for digital media completed after 1 January 2019. The festival gives priority to world and international premieres. Films that have already been shown in The Netherlands are not admitted. Student films, with the exception of post-graduate works, are excluded from submission to the festival. Films previously submitted to the Festival and were not selected, will not be reconsidered for the 2020 Festival.

1.4 Entry fee
The following entry fees are applicable to submitted films:
short films (films <60 minutes) € 30,-
feature films (films >60 minutes) € 55,-
Payment is to be effected during the online submission. Paypal, iDeal and credit card are accepted.

1.5 Sections
The 2020 International Film Festival Rotterdam comprises the following sections: Bright Future, Voices, Deep Focus, Perspectives.

1.6 Participation
Participation in the 2020 International Film Festival Rotterdam implies acceptance of the Rules and Regulations by filmmakers, producers and their agents.

2. Competitions

2.1 Official competitions
As part of the official programme, IFFR includes competitions to promote talented filmmakers: Tiger Competition (for feature length films) and Ammodo Tiger Short Competition. Voices section comprises films made eligible for VPRO Big Screen Award. Bright Future Main Programme has its own award, the Bright Future Award.

2.2 Tiger Competition
Eligible for Tiger Competition are directors of a 1st, 2nd or 3rd feature length film, 60 minutes or longer, that are presented in world premiere in Rotterdam. An international jury will select a winner who receives €40.000 to be shared between the film’s director and producer. In addition, a special jury award worth €10,000 will be presented to an exceptional artistic achievement within the competition.

2.3 Ammodo Tiger Short Competition
Eligible for Ammodo Tiger Short Competition are directors with a short film less than 60 minutes. The film should preferably have its world, international or European premiere in Rotterdam. During the festival an international jury selects three winners who each will receive €3,000 in cash.

2.4 VPRO Big Screen Award
Big Screen Competition comprises eight selected films having their world, European or international premières in IFFR’s Voices section. They will be judged by a jury of five enthusiast festival audience members. The winning film will receive a theatrical release in The Netherlands and will be purchased for broadcast. The VPRO Big Screen Award is worth a total of €30,000. Half of this amount is for the filmmaker; the other half is to be spent on the Dutch theatrical release.

2.5 Bright Future Award
Filmmakers presenting the international or world premiere of their first feature length film in the Bright Future section, and who are not competing for the Tiger Award, are eligible. The award, decided by a jury of three film industry and film festival professionals, consists of €10,000, to be spent on the development of a next film project.

2.6 BankGiro Loterij Audience Award
All feature length films, having received their first public screening after 1 January 2020, are eligible for the BankGiro Loterij Audience Award, chosen by the audience of the festival. The prize comprises €10,000.

2.7 Other Awards
Other awards presented in the context of IFFR include but are not necessarily limited to, a FIPRESCI Award (an international critics jury), KNF Award (Dutch critics jury for best Dutch (co)production in the festival), NETPAC Award (for best new Asian film in the festival), MovieZone Award (a youth jury award).

2.8 Committing to the competitions
Films cannot be withdrawn after accepting the invitation to participate. After accepting to participate in the Tiger Competition or Ammodo Tiger Short Competition, the film may not be screened at any other festival or public event prior to its official presentation in Rotterdam.

2.9 Promotional materials
Participants are urged to make available all requested publicity materials for promotion.

2.10 Mentioning participation
Producers and distributors of participating and awarded films in above mentioned competitions, are requested to mention this fact in future promotional materials. The appropriate logos will be made available through our Press department.

3. Submission Guidelines and Materials

3.1 Entry Form
The film should be entered online through your personal account.

3.2 Submission Deadlines
The submission deadlines for selection purposes, which means the deadline for the festival’s office to receive all required submission materials, are:

  • Short films (up to 60 min.) completed before 1 July 2019: 23 August
  • Short films (up to 60 min.) completed after 1 July 2019: 20 September
  • Feature length films (60+ min.): 15 October

The festival is not obliged to view entries that are received after these dates.

3.3 Preview Copy
All submissions require English language subtitles, with the exception of films with English, Dutch or no dialogue.
To complete your submission the festival requires a preview copy.
Please upload your preview copy to Vimeo and add the link to the online entry form. The Vimeo link should be downloadable and the password should be valid until January 2020.
Please note that submitting a DCP for previewing purposes should be authorized by the festival. Please contact the programme department.
In case you’re not able to provide us with a digital preview copy please send your DVD to:

International Film Festival Rotterdam
Attn: Programme Department
By regular (air) mail:
P.O. Box 21696
3001 AR Rotterdam
The Netherlands

By express courier:
Please mention "without commercial value, for cultural purposes only" and mark "No value", or not more than "10 US$"

Karel Doormanstraat 278-B
3012 GP Rotterdam
The Netherlands
Phone: +31 10 890 90 90
Fax: +31 10 890 90 91
e-mail: [email protected]

None of the above listed submission enclosures will be returned.

3.4 Additional materials
Requested in the online entry form are available press notes and publicity materials such as: Synopsis of the film (in English), a statement of the director on the film, biography and filmography of the director and full cast and credits list. In case an item is not available at the time of submission, it will be requested immediately upon selection (see also regulation 4).

3.5 Selection
All films presented at the festival are selected by the festival’s programmers and invited through its programme department. In case the programming team decides not to include a submitted film in IFFR, filmmakers will be notified as soon as possible via e-mail, and no later than 7 January 2020.

3.6 Announcements
The full screening schedule will be announced in January 2020, one week prior to the festival, on IFFR’s website.
Announcements of selected films as well as film programmes are at the discretion of the festival.

3.7 Refunds
After successfully receiving a film entry, the festival will not issue any refunds.

4. Selected films

4.1 Participants’ obligation
Participation in the festival requires the unconditional adherence to its regulations as set out here.

4.2 Catalogue materials
All contact persons of selected films will receive a request for catalogue materials upon confirming participation in the festival.

4.2.1 Required catalogue materials
In order to compile the Festival Catalogue, for each selected film the festival must receive a duly completed entry form and requested materials: hi-res .MOV file, synopsis of the film, biography and filmography of the director and a full list of artistic and catalogue credits. The requested materials should be sent/submitted as soon as possible upon acceptance of the invitation, but no later than 1 December 2019. The festival accepts no liability in the event that its publications reproduce inaccuracies in submitted materials.

4.2.2 Credits
In principle the catalogue will include the following technical and artistic credits: original title, international title, country(ies) of production, year of production, premiere status, format, length, director, production company, producer, sales company, print source, screenplay, cinematography, editing, production design, sound, music, principal cast.

4.2.3 Catalogue writings
Catalogue writings are entirely at the discretion of the festival.

4.3 Publicity materials
The publicity contacts of the films participating in the festival will receive a request from the press office to send publicity materials. These materials will be used in festival publications and for distribution to the press and festival guests.

4.3.1 Excerpts
After official selection of a film, the festival is qualified to use excerpts from the film, with a maximum of three (3) minutes, nationally and internationally for promotional purposes (for documentaries and short films, the total duration of the excerpts is not to exceed more than 10% of the film running time). In the event that excerpts are not available, and it’s being understood that under no circumstances the entire print may be lent out, the festival is qualified to copy, under its strict supervision, one or more excerpts from the film for promotional use prior to and during the festival only.

4.3.2 Promotion
For promotion of the entire selection and of each selected film, the festival website is allowed to use any photo or digital film clip (less than 3’ duration).

4.4 Video library / preview platform
Selected films will be made available during the festival in the video library and for a set amount of time on our preview platform. Both are accessible only for the festival organisation and registered guests, through our own (closed circuit) server. By accepting to be part of the festival the rights owners grant permission for their film to be included on the preview platform and in the video library, unless otherwise stated on the online entry form. For this purpose all participants will be requested to make available either a DVD or a QuickTime h.264 version of their film for encoding purposes.

4.5 Press & industry screenings
During the festival and in collaboration with the programme department the film office will organize press & industry screenings for feature length films. Rights owners of films included in the video library and press & industry screenings will receive detailed viewing reports and attendants lists afterwards.

4.6 Programming
General scheduling and the timetabling of both public screenings and press & industry screenings are entirely at the discretion of the festival management.

4.7 Subtitling
Selected films will be screened in their original version. In principle, if not with English dialogues, films must be subtitled in English. If necessary, and only with the prior approval of the festival, a film can be subtitled using an electronic subtitling system. In this case it is imperative, before shipping the print, to send the English dialogue list (including time codes) together with the final version of the film on DVD to the festival. Any cost made for translation, producing time coded files or DVD’s need to be covered by the rights holder of the film.

4.8 Formats
Film formats and video systems that can be presented during the festival are: 16mm/35mm/DCP
Please note:
A DCP (Digital Cinema Package) should be delivered on a EXT2/3 formatted CRU dataport Sata drive. If the package is encrypted, a DKDM should be provided. Sending in separate KDM’s is not accepted.
Presentation of other formats and video systems or delivery through any other type of disk, formatting or licenses requires the authorization of the festival. Without this authorization the festival retains the right to exclude a film from the programme.

5. Shipping of Prints and Videos of Selected Films

5.1 Shipping instructions
Detailed print/video/DCP shipment information will follow upon acceptance of the film.

5.1.1 Availability of screening copy
Unless authorized by the festival, prints/videos must be made available for the whole festival period. A DCP can be returned upon request right after ingesting and testing. In case you send a DCP, take into account that the festival needs time for testing and ingesting, and must therefore be available 22 December 2019. In case an encrypted DCP will be delivered, the DKDM time-window should be valid from 21 December 2019 till 2 February 2020. Prints/videos must arrive in the Netherlands before 3 January 2020.

5.1.2 Shipment
The sender is requested to inform the festival on the means of dispatch, date of shipment and airway bill number.
The film must be sent prepaid by sender. No collect shipments are accepted unless authorized by the festival.
The festival will only pay for the return transportation charges, excluding any additional costs for tax and custom clearance in country of return.

5.1.3 Pro forma
A pro forma invoice must accompany the print/video stating the name of the sender, the title of the film, format, length, number of reels (if applicable) and whether it is in color or black and white.

5.2 Print return
All prints will be returned within four weeks after the Festival. DCP’s can be returned upon request right after ingesting and testing. It is the responsibility of each participant to inform the festival in due time on (any change in) the details of the return address as well as the desired date of arrival at the return address. In case there is no confirmation of the address within two weeks after the festival, the screening copy will be returned to the print source of the film (as listed on the entry form). The festival is not liable for any inconvenience this may cause.

5.3 Insurance
The insurance of the copies comes into effect the moment the film has arrived at the festival office or has been received by the shipping agent at Amsterdam Airport. The insurance remains in effect until the film is reshipped. In case of damage to or loss of a film during the festival, the festival is only responsible for the costs involved in making a new print or replacing the damaged reel(s) based on the current laboratory rates for ordering a standard print.

5.4 Damage claims
Damage to the film print must be reported to the festival in writing within a month after return and prior to any following screening. Any claims will be judged by the reported state of the print. The insurance does not cover any damage during normal screening use.

6. Conclusion 

Entry and participation of films implies unconditional acceptance of the regulations. In unspecified cases, the festival management will make a final decision.

Last updated 20 May 2019