Top International Film Festivals Every Filmmaker Must Send Their Films To

By Aditya Savnal. Posted on April 09, 2015

Not all festivals are meant for your film. However screening your film at the right film festival could open up avenues for your film. It is therefore very essential to send your films to all the right festivals.

So if you have a film and want to send it to festivals, but are clueless about which ones to send it to, then we've got this list for you.

The best global film festivals to which every filmmaker must send their films.

Europe

1. Cannes Film Festival

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Every year, some of the best films are premiered at Cannes. Inside Llewyn Davis, Pan's Labyrinth, Waltz With Bashir, Winter Sleep and Blue Is The Warmest Colour are some of the acclaimed films to be screened at Cannes in recent years.

Indian films such as The Lunchbox and Titli were screened at the Cannes film festival and it became an important starting point in the journey of these films. The Cannes also has a Short Film Corner, a section that exclusively showcases short films made by aspiring filmmakers. Click here to know more about the Short Film Corner.

Films at Cannes get access to the Marche Du film - one of the biggest global film markets and that gives filmmakers a direct access to some of the biggest producers and distributors globally.

While entries for this year's edition are already closed, you can try sending your film for next year's edition of the festival. Click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

2. Berlin International Film Festival

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The Berlinale (as it is called) is one of the biggest film festivals in the world. Every year some of the most acclaimed films are screened at this prestigious film festival. Black Coal Thin Ice, The Grand Budapest HotelCapote and Jafar Panahi's Taxi are some of the recent films that have won awards at this festival.

Avinash Arun's soon to be released Marathi film Killawon the Crystal Bear award for best film in the 2014 edition of the festival.

This year's edition of the festival was recently concluded in February in Berlin, Germany. A screening here and your film could easily crack the global distribution game. If that excites you then click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

3. Venice International Film Festival

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The Venice International Film Festival held in Venice, Italy is one of the oldest international film festivals of the world. And every year they showcase some of the best films from across the globe.

Films such as Pieta, Monsoon Wedding & Three Colours Blue are some of the films that have won the Golden Lion - the highest award conferred by the festival to the films which are in competition. Chaitanya Tamhane's 'Court' started its festival journey at Venice last year and has since gone on to become one of the most widely acclaimed Indian films in recent times.

The 2015 edition of the festival is scheduled to take place from 2nd to 12th September 2015 and is currently accepting submissions for the same. Click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

 4. International Film Festival Of Rotterdam

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Besides the Cannes, Venice and Berlin film festivals, the International Film Festival of Rotterdam (IFFR) is one of the most prominent European film festivals that has gained a great global reputation. IFFR has been showcasing some of the best films made by promising filmmaking talents from across the globe. Titli, Labour Of Love and Court are some of the recent Indian films that have screened at this festival.

Their Cinemart initiative provides production and distribution opportunities to filmmakers whose projects have a potential to reach international audiences. The festival also has a Hubert Bals fund that  provides grants to film projects that are in various stages of production. Court, Deool, Liar's Dice and Qissa are some of the acclaimed Indian films that have received the Hubert Bals fund.

Click here to know more about the submission process and the Hubert Bals Fund.

5. Locarno International Film Festival

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The Locarno International Film Festival is being held in Switzerland for more than 6 decades now. And over a period of time, it has become a international film festival of great repute. Short Term 12, Blue Ruin, Clouds Of Sils Maria and Goodbye To Language are some of the films that have screened in the recent editions of this festival. Besides this, directors such as Abbas Kiraostami, Wim Wenders and Mike Leigh have had their films screened at this festival.

The 2015 edition of the festival is scheduled to take place from 5th to 15th Aug, 2015 in Locarno, Switzerland and is currently accepting submissions for the same. Click here to know more about festival and the submission process.

The Americas

6. Sundance Film Festival

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Started by veteran actor and filmmaker Robert Redford, Sundance is one of biggest Independent film festivals globally. 13 Tzameti, Four Lions, Animal Kingdom and Donnie Darko are some of the films that have screened to much acclaim and applause at this festival. Prashant Nair's Umrika recently premièred at Sundance and won the World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award.

This festival also gives you an opportunity to young screenwriters to work and develop their feature film scripts with the support of established screenwriters and directors through the Sundance Screenwriters Lab initiative.

While this year's edition of the festival was recently concluded in January, the 38th edition of the festival is scheduled to take place between 21st to 31st Jan, 2016 in Utah, United States. If you wish to send your film or script to the festival, then click here to know more about their submission process and the screenwriters lab.

7. Tribeca Film Festival

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The Tribeca Film Festival was founded in 2002 by Robert De Niro and producer Jane Rosenthal in memory of the 911 attacks. Since then the festival has grown in stature and is now an integral part of the city as well as the festival circuit.

This year's edition of the festival is around the corner and will be held from 15th to 26th April in New York . If you wish to send your film for next year's edition of the festival, then you can click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

8. Toronto International Film Festival

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The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is the biggest film festival of Canada and one of the most renowned internationally. TIFF showcases films with varied content made by new and established filmmakers from across the globe. Films such as Dallas Buyers Club, Argo and Moneyball are some of the films that were premiered at this film festival.

The Shortcuts section of TIFF started this year showcases short films from around the world. Megha Ramaswamy's Newborns and the Oscar nominated A Single Life are some of the films that were showcased in this section this year.

The 2015 edition of the festival will take place from 10th to 20th Sep, 2015 in Toronto, Canada and is currently accepting submissions for the same. The final deadline for the submissions is 1st May 2015. Click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

9. AFI Film Festival

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The AFI Film Festival is one of the most prominent film festivals of United States which has been showcasing the best films from across the world for a long time now. Many acclaimed films such as Birdman, Her, The Past, Traffic, Almost Famous and Babel have been screened at this film festival.

The 2015 edition of the festival is scheduled to take place from 5th to 12th November 2015 in Los Angeles, USA and is currently accepting submissions for the same. Click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

10. San Francisco International Film Festival

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The San Francisco International Film Festival is one of the oldest film festivals of America which showcases more than 150 films annually curated from around the world. Besides the feature films and documentaries, they showcase live action and animated short films and films made by film students.

This year's edition of the festival will take place from 23rd April to 8th May in San Francisco, USA. If you intend to send your film to next year's edition, then you can click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

11. Telluride Film Festival

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Started in 1971, the Telluride Film Festival is one of the most prominent film festivals. The festival has hosted premières of El Mariachi, Blue Velvet, The Crying Game and many other acclaimed films.

The festival is currently accepting submissions for its 2015 edition. The festival is tentatively scheduled from 29th August to 1st Sep 2015 in Telluride, USA. Click here to know more about the festival and the submission process.

12. Ann Arbor Film Festival

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The Ann Arbor Film Festival is one of the oldest film festivals in America. Every year they showcase more than 3000 films selected from more than 60 countries. The festival has showcased the early works of George Lucas, Andy Warhol, Gus Van Sant and other prominent filmmakers.

This year's edition of the film festival was recently concluded in March in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA. If you wish to send your film to next year's edition of the festival, then click here to know more about their submission process.

13. Sao Paulo International Film Festival

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The Sao Paulo International Film Festival held every year in Brazil is one of the biggest film festivals of South America. The three decade old festival showcases films selected from more than 17 countries annually. Since its inception, the festival has screened films of Satyajit Ray, Abbas Kiarostami, Pedro Almodovar, Park Chan Wook and Aki Kaurismaki amongst others.

Wild Tales, Turtles Can Fly and Suicide Club are some of the most acclaimed films to be screened in this festival. Amongst Indian films, Peepli Live was in competition in the 2o10 edition of the festival.

The festival takes place every year in the month of October. This year too, the festival is scheduled to take place during the same, although no specific details are currently available about the same. Click here to know more about the festival and it's submission process.

Asia

14. Hongkong International Film Festival

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The Hongkong International Film Festival (HKIFF) is one of the largest film festivals of Asia. The four decade old festival annually showcases more than 500 films curated from around the world.

Brillante Mendonza's Kinatay, Samuel Maoz's Lebanon, Coen Brother's A Serious Man are some of the films that have been screened at  this festival.

Thsi year's edition of the festival was recently concluded. If you wish to send your film to next year's edition of the festival, then click here to know more about the festival and its submission process.

15. Dubai International Film Festival

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Started in 2004, The Dubai International Film Festival is the oldest film festival in the Gulf region. Every year , some of the most unique and diverse films are showcased at this festival. The Motorcycle Diaries, MommyThe Kite Runner and Finding Neverland are some of the acclaimed films that have been screened at this festival.

Indian films have also had their share of accolades with Shahid and Katiyabaaz being some of the recent Indian films that were screened at this festival.

The 12th edition of the festival will be held from 9th to 16th of December this year. Click here to know more about the festival and its submission process.

16. Busan International Film Festival

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The Busan International Film Festival which was started in 1996 is one of the first and most significant film festivals of Asia. The festival annually showcases more than 200 films curated from more than 63 countries.

Some of the films that were screened at this festival are In The Mood For Love, Mommy and Maps To The Stars. The 2015 edition of the festival will take place between 1st to 10th October 2015 and submissions currently on for the same. Click here to know more about the festival and its submission process.


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