Submissions for CIFF 2021 ARE OPEN NOW

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Going into its 22nd year, the 11-day Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF) has grown to be the biggest film festival in Alberta and the sixth-largest in Canada taking place September 23 - October 3, 2021.

Offering over $25,000 in cash and prizes, the festival awards outstanding films selected by the audience and esteemed juries. Showcasing 180-200 short and feature-length, multi-genre films, from Canada and around the world, CIFF is a qualifying, accredited festival for the Academy Awards® and the Canadian Screen Awards. 

Located on the edge of North America’s most dynamic filming locations, the festival is known for its hospitality and has been named one of the “Top 50 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee” by MovieMaker Magazine in 2009, 2016, 2017, 2019 & 2020.

During the 2020 festival, we shifted to a hybrid festival model offering safe, limited capacity in person screenings and virtual streaming across Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba successfully reaching 2019 attendance levels. In addition to 180 film selections, we hosted a number of virtual Behind the Screen events with guests including Finn Wolfhard, Lawrence and Meg Kasdan, and Andrew Phung. Read our Final Report to learn more about our audience.

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CIFF 2021 Dates: September 3 - October 3

Submission Deadlines - Launching January 11 via Film Freeway
Don't miss a deadline, sign up for our Industry Newsletter

  • February 26, 2021
    Earlybird
  • May 28, 2021
    Regular Deadline
  • June 18, 2021
    Extended Deadline
  • August 17, 2021
    Notification Date

 

Waivers: We provide fee waiver codes for festival alumni and also, thanks to our presenting partner ATB, Alberta productions. Please contact us if needed.

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Features in Competition: 

Canadian Narrative Feature CompetitionThe most engaging stories from our home country. Films in this section will compete for a $10,000 CAD juried prize, and an audience award.

DGC Canadian Documentary CompetitionCompelling Canadian non-fiction cinema. Films in this section will compete for a $5000 CAD juried prize, and an audience award.

International Narrative Competition (Outside Canada)The best narrative cinema from around the globe (U.S. & International). FIlms in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD juried cash prize, and an audience award.

International Documentary Competition (Outside Canada)Compelling non-fiction cinema from around the globe (U.S. & International). Films in this section will compete for a juried $1000 CAD cash prize, and an audience award

Eligible for audience awards, CIFF 2020 non-juried competition sections include: Late Shows (Genre Films), Music on Screen, Generation Next, Special Presentations and Galas.

Shorts in Competition: 

Live Action Short Films: International competition for Live Action narrative films under 40 minutes. Films in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD category prize, and are eligible for a $2500 CAD grand jury prize.

Animated Short Films: International competition for Animated films under 40 minutes. Films in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD category prize, and are eligible for a $2500 CAD grand jury prize.

Documentary Short Films: International competition for Documentary films under 40 minutes. Films in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD category prize, and are eligible for a $2500 CAD grand jury prize.

Alberta Short Films: Provincial competition for films under 40 minutes. Films in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD category prize, and are eligible for a $2500 CAD grand jury prize. See rules for eligibility requirements.

Student Short Films: Post-Secondary Student competition for films under 40 minutes. Films in this section will compete for a $1000 CAD category prize, and are eligible for a $2500 CAD grand jury prize. See rules for eligibility requirements.

9 x Audience Choice Feature Film Awards - Alberta Feature, Canadian Narrative, Canadian Documentary, International Narrative, International Documentary, Late Shows, Music on Screen, Generation Next, Special Presentations.

4 x Audience Choice Short Film Awards - Alberta, Documentary, Live Action, Animated

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