HBF Practical Info & Deadlines

HBF Funding

The HBF offers several funding schemes: early on for development, or later on for production and post-production. Filmmakers with a project in early development can apply for Script and Project Development Support in two sub-categories: Bright Future for first and second-time filmmakers, and Voices for filmmakers more advanced in their career. With the support of the Creative Europe-MEDIA programme of the European Union, minority co-production support is offered to European producers within the framework of HBF+Europe. Dutch producers can apply for co-production funding through the NFF+HBF Co-production Scheme, a collaboration with the Netherlands Film Fund. The Dutch Post-production Awards are a collaboration with the Netherlands Film Fund, the Netherlands Post production Alliance, and offer post-production prizes to be spent in the Netherlands. An overview of the latest selections can be found on the HBF Archive page

Although the fund looks closely at the financial aspects of a project, the decisive factors to grant support are the content and artistic value. Since the founding of the fund, more than 1,100 projects of independent filmmakers have received support.


Please note that the global Covid-19 crisis will not affect deadlines, all selection rounds will go ahead as planned.

The entry forms for both Script and Project Development categories will be available online at least 2 weeks before the deadline.

All applications done at the Hubert Bals Fund should be submitted before 23:59h on the deadline date in the applicant’s time zone. Late submissions are not taken into consideration. Answers to Frequently Asked Questions can be found on our FAQ-page. Applications for NFF+HBF should be done at the Netherlands Film Fund. The entry form for HBF+Europe will be available in January 2021. The application procedure for the Dutch Post-production Awards will be published in the summer of 2020.

Geographical Focus

As per January 2017 the HBF provides support to talented filmmakers from countries as specified in the HBF list of eligible countries. This list includes countries from Latin-America, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe, and is roughly based on the DAC-list of the OECD and the lowest ranking countries on the World Free Press Index.
The HBF also provides support to feature films by filmmakers who are originally from a country on the HBF list of eligible countries, but are currently living in diaspora (e.g. dual nationality, refugee status or residency permit) in a non-eligible country. Please note priority is given to films that are majority shot in an eligible country.


The HBF asks for a few things in return for its support, after a supported film is finished. Firstly the World, International or Benelux premiere of the film should take place at International Film Festival Rotterdam, and no screening fees should be charged. The Benelux rights of the film remain with the rights-holder of the film. However, if no distribution agreement with a Benelux distributor is concluded within six months after the World premiere of the film, the Benelux exploitation rights are transferred to HBF. The HBF also asks non-exclusive world VOD rights of the film, to ensure that the film can at some point (after potential exclusive deals) be included in online IFFR curated content.

Facts and Figures (2019)

  • 867 applications in total
  • 35 film projects supported in total
  • €817,000 of contributions
  • 798 applications for Script and Project Development - 23 supported
  • 43 applications for HBF+Europe - 6 supported
  • 13 applications for NFF+HBF - 4 supported
  • 13 applications for Dutch Post-production Awards - 2 supported
  • 80% of supported projects were 1st and 2nd feature films
  • 20% of supported projects were by more advanced directors
  • 8% of all applications came from Sub-Saharan Africa
  • 14% of all applications came from East-Asia and the Pacific
  • 14% of all applications came from Europe and Central Asia
  • 40% of all applications came from Latin America and the Caribbean
  • 9% of all applications came from the Middle East and North Africa
  • 15% of all applications came from South Asia
  • supported directors: 43% female / 57% male
  • supported (co-)producers: 58% female / 42% male

* We use regions as defined by the World Bank

For more data, please see the IFFR Annual Reports on the HBF Archive page.


Approximately 80% of the films the HBF supports have been realised or are currently in production. All projects that were selected by the Hubert Bals Fund over the years can be found in our Complete Results overview. Every year, IFFR screens the majority of recently completed films supported by the fund. An overview of (past) selected HBF projects and Harvests can be found on the HBF Archive page.


The Hubert Bals Fund is supported by: 



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