Attracting more than 44,000 people, the Fribourg International Film Festival (FIFF) is one of the most popular film events in Western Switzerland and one of the European pioneers in discovering Asian, Latin American, African, Near and Middle East and Eastern European cinema. Every year, the Festival becomes an important gathering for film aficionados of all cultures and origins, for classics and novelties lovers, for auteur cinema, as well as for contemporary popular productions.
The FIFF aims to contribute to the cinematographic and cultural diversity in Switzerland and in Europe. The Festival is open to all horizons, but its Official Selection (International Competition: Short Films) focuses on works from the following countries:
Angola, South Africa, Algeria, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, the Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Morocco, Mauritius, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Uganda, Rwanda, St-Hélène, Sao Tomé-et-Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Chad, Togo, Tunisia, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Caribbean, Dominique, Ecuador, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia, Salvador, Surinam, Venezuela
Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Korea (Democratic People’s Rep. of), India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, East Timor, Vietnam
Fiji, Cook Islands ,Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, Micronesia, Papua, Nauru, Niue, New Guinea, Palau, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Wallis and Futuna
Near and Middle East
Gaza and West Bank, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen
Eastern Europe and the CIS
Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Moldavia, Montenegro, Uzbekistan., Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Turkey, Ukraine, Kazakhstan
To promote the distribution of the selected films filmmakers, producers, distributors, cinema programmers and film critics are invited to attend the Festival.
The 35th Fribourg International Film Festival will take place from the 19th to 28th March 2021.
The Official Selection includes:
• International Competition: Feature Films
• International Competition: Short Films
Both competitions are open to fiction, documentary and animation.
The Festival also offers non-competitive sections focusing on films (long, medium or short-length) that have rarely or never been shown in Switzerland.
• Opening Film/Closing Film
• Genre Cinema: Genre films and their varieties specially in Latin America, Asia, Africa, Near and Middle East and Eastern Europe
• Diaspora: Emblematic films for an exiled community, chosen by a special guest from that community
• Decryption: Films dealing with historical, social or religious questions
• FIFFamille: a special programme for children and their parents
• Hommage à…: Films chosen by a special guest who has contributed to the construction of bridges between different avenues of film production
• New Territory: Films from countries whose cinema market is not well-known or recognized. In 2021: Rwanda
• Midnight Screenings: Films for an adult audience (for ages 16 and up). Horrific, erotic, disturbing
• Films of the International Jury: Films directed, produced or starred in by members of the International Jury
• Passeport Suisse: Films by Swiss directors that were directed abroad as well as international films directed in Switzerland
• Sur la carte de…: Films chosen by a guest film director that have influenced her or his work
The Festival also offers a program for schools, colleges and universities. The programme is called Planète Cinéma. With close to 12,000 children and teenagers registered, Planète Cinéma is the most important school program in Switzerland.
Discussions and debates are organized between filmmakers, the audience, journalists and industry professionals.
The participation in the 35th edition of the FIFF implies that the directors, the producers and their agents accept the conditions of participation under the rules and regulations.
In its International Competition: Short Films the Festival welcomes:
• Films made by filmmakers from countries listed in point 1.2 exclusively
• Fiction, documentary or animation films
• Short films (< 30 minutes) for the International Competition: Short Films (Official Selection)
• Films with a copyright of the year preceding the date of the Festival (exceptions allowed)
• Films that have not been released in Switzerland (for the competition, priority will be given to World or European premieres)
• We put a high priority on DCP and ProRes files. Exception will be considered case by case (HDCam, Digibeta, or any other digital screening format).
According to international regulations, the Festival has the right to organize up to 4 screenings for each selected film. Any additional screening will only be granted after negotiations between the Festival and the eligible party. We count of the latter’s understanding: it may happen that because of the sanitary measures resulting from the Covid-19 situation we find ourselves compelled to add screenings in order to limit the number of people at each screening.
Registration to the International Competition: Short Films
• Fill out the registration form on our Eventival page. Log in to Eventival to have access to the form.
• Any production in DCP and ProRes files HDCam, Digibeta, or any other digital screening format with priority on DCP and ProRes files
• Registration deadline: Friday, 11th December 2020
• Festival dates: 19th to 28th March 2021
To be eligible for the 35th edition, films must be registered by 11th December 2020 at the latest. The online entry form is available on our Eventival page.
In order to allow the Festival to facilitate the promotion of each selected film, it is mandatory to fill out the registrations form entirely and accurately, and to provide all the requested material.
The information given will be published in the catalogue of the Festival, on its website, as well as in all official documents.
Your inscription will be completed once we have received the selection materials including a link to the screener.
Shipping of the selection materials (screener and technical details)
Directors or producers are requested to provide the Festival with the following selection materials:
• Screener DVD or online screening access (to be provided on the registration form)
• 3-5 images of the film in high resolution (300dpi)
• One trailer (with English and/or French subtitles)
• Film director’s filmography (maximum 400 characters)
• Photo of the film director
Last shipping deadline: 17th January 2021
The sender is liable for all transport and insurance expenses of the material. (Please mark DVDs as samples: "No commercial value, for cultural purpose only”)
The Festival accepts working copies (works in progress) if the movie can be completed before the shipping deadline of the Festival (4 weeks before the Festival begins).
The Festival does not return the screening material.
The screeners of films entered for pre-selection must be sent to:
Festival International de Films de Fribourg
Esplanade de l'Ancienne-Gare 3
Case Postale 262
1701 Fribourg – Switzerland
Producers and directors who have submitted a film will be notified by e-mail of the selection committee’s decision at the Festival’s earliest convenience. The selection committee’s decisions are irrevocable.
FIFF does not charge an entry fee for the International Competition.
Once chosen for the Official Selection:
• The film cannot be withdrawn from the selection
• The film cannot be shown in Switzerland before the next edition of FIFF
In case of selection, the prints (preferably DCP) must reach the Festival at the latest 30 days prior to its start.
The Festival covers the transport expenses. The Festival Print Traffic will supply the shipping address in due time. A pro forma document must accompany the print, providing the usual information:
• Name and contact of the sender
• Film title
• Screening format
• Duration (in minutes)
• Number of hard disks, files or tapes or print rolls
• Color or in black/white
The films will be returned the Monday following the end of the Festival, at the earliest. The precise shipping address for the return of the prints must be clearly stated to the Festival print traffic manager by the opening day of the Festival at the latest.
To guarantee the best possible screening conditions, the Festival encourages, if possible, the sending of DCP or ProRes files.
Subtitles and dialogue list
The Festival proposes digital subtitles in English, French and German for all films selected in the Official Selection. The producers or the directors are asked to send the dialogue list (including time codes) and the translations in English, French and German (if possible) as soon as the selection of their film is confirmed.
The producer or the director will supply the following promotional material:
• 3-5 Film stills (high resolution, 300dpi)
• 2 excerpts (1 minute and 2-3 minutes and with English and/or French subtitles and if possible without insert of the production visual)
The Festival is allowed to use this material at its convenience in order to promote the film (website, printed programme, press material, invitations), The festival do not have to credit the photographs.
Participating in the Festival implies granting permission for video excerpts of the film to be used by the media and their websites. These excerpts shall be limited to a maximum of 10% of the total film length and shall in no case exceed 3 minutes each.
The selected movies will be made available for the organization of the Festival and for certain industry professionals in the offices of the Festival during the Festival only. By accepting the regulations, the holders of the rights of the film authorize the film to be accessible on the server of the Festival. In order to screen the films under the best conditions, the participants must provide a digital screening copy.
Partnership with Festival Scope
The films selected for the International Competition: Short Films and some selected for other sections will be available on the Festival Scope site. Free access is available only for film industry professionals with subscriptions.
Bringing the film festival experience further, the Festival International de Films de Fribourg partners with Festival Scope to offer the selected short and feature films an additional screening, online and limited to 200 people. The screening will take place in a virtual theatre hosted by Festival Scope (www.festivalscope.com). This theater will stay open for 2 weeks only starting on 29th March 2021. The films will be screened for free, in secure streaming with one viewing per person and no downloads allowed. The aim of the initiative is to bring additional visibility to the films through media partnerships and targeted promotion. The members of Festival Scope team will contact you for your permission and regarding the technical questions.
Press and industry screenings
Press and industry screenings for feature films in the International Competition will be organized during the Festival and thus add one extra screening to the public ones.
The Festival takes place in Fribourg and its region.
The Festival bears the insurance costs of the prints covering the period between the reception of the prints in Switzerland and the return of the prints from Switzerland. In the case of loss or damage during this period, the Festival is liable for the replacement cost of the print only. No claim concerning the condition of a print returned by the Festival will be taken into consideration unless it is made within 8 working days of reception by the consignee or prior to any further screening of the film outside the Festival.
Invitation to FIFF
In accordance with hospitality regulations, the Festival will invite the directors of the films in the International Competition as a priority. The Festival has the right to decide upon the best possible itinerary in agreement with the guests. The Festival schedules the dates for the film screenings. Invited directors are requested to attend these screenings. The dates shall be confirmed at least 15 days prior to the beginning of the Festival.
Awards and Juries
The best short film will be awarded with a prize of CHF 7500.- and a Jury made up of film students from the Réseau Cinéma CH will be awarding an additional prize of CHF 3000.- as well.
The Festival reserves the right to change, add or suppress awards according to the circumstances.
Certificate of participation, promotion and publicity of the Festival awards
Each director whose film is presented at the Festival will be provided with a certificate of participation. Each director, producer or distributor will receive press clippings and reviews of their film.
Each awarded film must mention the name of the award(s) and "Fribourg International Film Festival 2021" in its promotional material. Films not awarded may mention for their promotion "Fribourg International Film Festival 2021 Official Selection".
Exceptions and disputes
The Festival management is responsible for settling any cases not provided for in the present regulations, and granting any exceptions from the provisions for expressed and justified requests only. Participation in the Festival implies unreserved acceptance of the terms of the present regulations.