HBF General

When can I apply?
Next application deadlines:
4 October 2016: NFF+HBF Co-production Scheme 
1 April 2017: HBF+Europe Minority Co-production support

As of 2017, the HBF will once again be open for proposals for Script and Project Development and Postproduction. New regulations and application deadlines for 2017 will be announced in the coming months.


What is the Hubert Bals Fund?

The Hubert Bals Fund of the International Film Festival Rotterdam is designed to help remarkable or urgent feature films by innovative and talented filmmakers from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Eastern Europe on their road to completion. It provides grants that often turn out to play a crucial role in enabling these filmmakers to realise their projects. Read more in our profile.

Who can apply to the Hubert Bals Fund?
  • For the HBF+Europe: Minority co-production support the applicant should be a production company that is constituted and active for at least two years in a country participating in the MEDIA Sub-program and owned - directly or by majority participation - by nationals from such countries. The track record of the applicant should demonstrate a (majority or minority) participation in at least two completed feature films, including one international or European co-produced feature film.
  • For HBF+Europe: Distribution Support for International Co-productions the applicant should be a rights holder of the film – or the coordinator of a consortium of rights holders – for the territories in which the action takes place. The applicant should be a company constituted and active for at least two years in a country participating in the MEDIA Sub-program and owned - directly or by majority participation - by nationals from such countries. The track record of the applicant should demonstrate a participation in the distribution of at least two international/European co-produced feature films.
  • For NFF+HBF, the collaborative programme of the HBF with the Netherlands Film Fund, the applicant should be a Dutch producer that fits the eligibility criteria of the Netherlands Film Fund.
What is the DAC-list?

The OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) has a committee that deals with development co-operation matters. The name of this committee is Development Assistance Committee (DAC) and every three year this committee revises their so-called DAC-list. The DAC-list of ODA Recipients shows developing countries and territories eligible for receiving Official Development Assistance (ODA). The different financiers of the Hubert Bals Fund require the Fund to use the DAC-list as a guideline for which countries projects can be supported. It is not possible for the HBF to make any exceptions.

What type of projects are you looking for?

A project from a DAC-listed country with a director attached, that also comes from a DAC-listed country. The artistic quality of an application is the main criteria for selection. The selection committee will also look closely at the viability of a project. The story of the project should be rooted in the culture of the applicant's country. 

The Hubert Bals Fund is part of International Film Festival Rotterdam and generally speaking, the type of projects that the HBF supports are in line with the type of films that are screened at IFFR. Please see the past Harvests of HBF supported films that were part of IFFR’s programme as a reference.

Can I apply with a short film project?

No. The Hubert Bals Fund is designed to support feature length fiction films. Only films over 60 minutes in length are eligible for support.

Is a co-directed project eligible?

The director(s) of the film should be a national from one of the countries mentioned on the DAC-list of the OECD. If one of the directors is not a national from a non-DAC-listed country, it is not possible to apply.

Can I submit a creative documentary project?

The main focus of the fund is the support of feature fiction films. Shorts, documentaries and films made for television will not be taken in consideration. All regular (creative) documentary projects are advised to apply to the IDFA Bertha Fund of the International Documentary Festival Amsterdam. In some specific cases, the Hubert Bals Fund has supported documentary films. These projects always had a strong cinematic approach and were usually films that play with fiction or have a more experimental approach. Please keep in mind that the Hubert Bals Fund is designed to support feature fiction films.

What is the postal address of the Hubert Bals Fund?

These are our address details:

By regular (air) mail: 
International Film Festival Rotterdam 
Attn. Hubert Bals Fund 
P.O.Box 21696 
3001 AR Rotterdam 

By express courier: 
International Film Festival Rotterdam 
Attn. Hubert Bals Fund 
Karel Doormanstraat 278 B 
3012 GP Rotterdam 
(please mark: 'no value' or 'value 10 US$')

Why do I receive an automatic reply in response to my email?

Annually, close to 800 applications are submitted to the Hubert Bals Fund. The fund is run by a small team. Given the vast amount of inquiries that we receive during the Spring and Fall selection rounds, we can unfortunately not respond to all questions directly. On this Frequently Asked Questions page you can find answers to most of the questions we annually receive. Hopefully, you will be able to find your answer in here. In case you cannot find an answer to your question through this page, please know that we will try to get back to you as soon as possible, but within three weeks at the latest.

Which other funds do you recommend?
Who selects the projects?

A selection committee consisting of film industry professionals from the Netherlands and abroad, including IFFR programmers and CineMart staff. All committee members have extensive experience in the assessment of applications and films and often bring specific regional expertise to the committee. All applications will be assessed by multiple committee members and over the course of several meetings a final selection is made.

For the HBF+Europe: Minority co-production support and for HBF+Europe: Distribution Support for International Co-productions: the committee assessing the projects consists of members of both Europe and outside Europe, each with a distinct and relevant expertise and experience within the film industry. 

For NFF+HBF the collaborative programme with the Netherlands Film Fund, the selection committee consists of several staff members from the Netherlands Film Fund and the Hubert Bals Fund.

When and how do I hear any results?

HBF+Europe: Minority Co-production Support

Approximately 3 months after the application deadline.

HBF+Europe: Distribution Support for International Co-productions
Approximately 3 months after the application deadline.

Approximately 6 weeks after the application deadline.