Wide reach and accessibility at February festival days

18 February 2021

IFFR 2021 © Jan de Groen

IFFR began its 50th anniversary edition with a first part which took place from 1 to 7 February 2021. A programme which included 65 film titles (43 features and 22 shorts), city-wide Tiger on the Loose interactive installations, a striking festival campaign and the exclusively online IFFR Pro Days came together to make a hybrid event adapted to the harsh reality of the situation in the Netherlands and worldwide.

As well as the resilience of filmmakers and industry guests, the creativity of the festival team, and the adaptability of our audiences, IFFR is already reflecting on the wide-reaching accessibility that the mainly online format provided. With an online film programme that reached out further into provinces across the Netherlands, an increased number of accreditations for international press, and impressive engagement in Pro events, the festival maintained and exceeded its commitment to emerging filmmaking talent – and can now look excitedly towards the opportunities of its June celebration and the events in between. 

See the full numbers for the February days below 

Festival director Vanja Kaludjercic: “The first chapter of this remarkable 50th festival edition was not only marked by great challenges but also by great opportunities. I am incredibly proud how through a great deal of flexibility and hard work we were able to connect outstanding emerging talent – including Tiger Award winner Vinothraj P.S. with Pebbles – with audiences and industry alike. It’s equally rewarding that the largest amount of international accredited press to date (a 41% increase compared to 2020 from 61 countries) was fully engaged with our lineup; they were vital in creating genuine energy and excitement around our programme. The February experience is valuable and insightful in many ways and we are looking forward to the next chapters of our anniversary, including our Unleashed: 50/50 collection and the June summer celebration.”

Managing director Marjan van der Haar: “Although we celebrated this part mainly online we were delighted by the engagement of the filmmakers with audiences watching from their homes throughout the Netherlands in our widely accessible format. From the past, present and future festival campaign through to the Tiger on the Loose installations, IFFR Daily, Big Talks, and most importantly the online screenings and Q&As, we managed to create a new virtual IFFR experience. We are grateful for the continuous support of all our partners in this challenging year.” 

February festival facts and figures

February programme

  • 16 Tiger Competition titles (14 world premieres and 2 international premieres)
  • 14 Big Screen Competition titles (11 world premieres, 2 international premieres, 1 European premiere)
  • 22 Ammodo Tiger Short Competition titles (13 world premieres, 8 international premieres, 1 European premieres)
  • 13 Limelight titles (2 world premieres, 2 international premieres, 9 Dutch premieres)
  • 5 Big Talks accessible globally online
  • 147 live Q&As, introductions and pre-recorded interviews
  • 25 IFFR audience members and 25 Tiger Competition winners celebrate IFFR in IFFR Plays Back ◀◀
  • 50 campaign posters from past editions and 50 future posters designed by Willem de Kooning Academy students were projected onto Pathé Schouwburgplein for IFFR 100

Read about the IFFR 2021 award winners here

Audience engagement

  • 132,286 visits
  • 16% increase in audience representation across the country: from 21% of audiences in 2020 outside of North and South Holland provinces, to 37% in February 2021
  • 20.1% of audiences watched online premiere screenings, 79.9% watched on demand
  • 4,000,000 YouTube views between 22 December 2020 and 7 February 2021 
  • 12,998 interactions with the Tiger on the Loose augmented reality art installation


  • 12,477 visits (both online and physical) by school children, students and teachers between 1 February 2020 and 9 February 2021
  • 56% of lessons and workshops took place physically in cinemas and schools, while 44% were online, in line with changing health regulations throughout the year and during the festival.

IFFR Pro Days

  • 1,797 guests from the film industry, including:
    • 78 participating filmmakers 
    • 754 CineMart guests, a 10% increase from IFFR 2020
    • 99 countries represented, an 11% increase from IFFR 2020
  • 4,492 visits to IFFR Pro activities, including online panels and Reality Checks sessions
  • 951 CineMart one-on-one meetings facilitated


  • 508 journalists (80 Netherlands-based journalists and 428 international journalists) 
  • 41% increase in international press accreditations
  • 61 countries represented in total

Head of IFFR Pro Marit van den Elshout: “The fact that we registered over 4,000 interactions with IFFR Pro activities and scheduled close to 1,000 one-on-one meetings between CineMart, Boost NL and VR projects and potential partners points to the success of our exclusively online IFFR Pro Days format. Increased accessibility online from around the globe was fundamental in fostering the collaborations and connections that are so vital for our industry, made possible through tools such as our Press & Industry platform Festival Scope through which there were 15,557 screenings. Thank you to the dedication and energy of the professionals who believed in us to provide this vital platform for the industry.”


Pebbles by Vinothraj P.S. wins the 2021 Tiger Award

07 February 2021

Find out the rest of our IFFR 2021 winners

Other blog posts on IFFR 2021