Submit to IDFA Forum

    IDFA Forum 2021 will be a live event on site. We very much look forward to hosting a physical market in Amsterdam that welcomes professionals and film teams to attend in person. To accommodate Forum guests who are unable to travel, we also offer the possibility of online participation. Read more about this year's format on the IDFA Forum setup and IDFA DocLab Forum setup pages.

    On this page, you can find all information about submitting to IDFA Forum, including entry regulations, eligibility, fees, and practical info for the Forum Pitches, Rough Cut Presentations, and Producers Connection. As part of the submission process, we encourage you to read through our submission checklist and FAQ.

    Please note that project submissions for IDFA Forum 2021 are now closed, but it is still possible to accredit for the Producers Connection as a producer without a project.

    Key submission dates for IDFA Forum 2021

    • Updated rules and regulations available: June 22
    • Entry form available: June 22
    • Submission deadline: August 2, 23:59 CEST
    • IDFA Forum: November 20-26

    General entry regulations

    What we're looking for

    1. Producers with new documentary projects (one-offs and series) looking for co-producers, funds, television and platform commissions, distribution, or a combination of these, are encouraged to submit. We are specifically looking for artistic and innovative ways of storytelling and cutting-edge stories. Projects aiming for cinema release are importunately invited to submit. Documentaries made for children aged nine to twelve and family audiences are also invited to submit to the Forum.

    2. Immersive/interactive projects in all stages of production and financing. IDFA DocLab Forum is open to all sorts of formats that tell a documentary story or explore unknown realities, including web docs, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, physical installations, multimedia journalism, and live performances. Artists looking for co-producers, creative input, and financing possibilities are invited to submit.

    3. Producers without a project at the Forum who are looking for new projects to co-produce. New this year, the Producers Connection category welcomes independent attending producers with a proven track record in international co-producing and whose county of residence offers funding for minority co-productions. Interested producers who fit these criteria are invited to apply for accreditation to the Producers Connection.

    Below, you can find all general eligibility criteria and specific eligibility criteria per category.

    Eligibility criteria and practical information for Forum Pitches

    Eligibility criteria

    • Creative documentaries intended for theatrical distribution, TV broadcasting, and/or other platforms are eligible.
    • Projects can be in all stages of production, except post-production/rough cut stage.
    • Please note that short films are not eligible.
    • There are no restrictions regarding the amount of financing already in place.
    • In cases where a fund, TV station, or platform is already on board, their presence at the pitch is highly desirable. Commitment from financial partners is not required to apply or be selected.

    Practical information

    • The pitches are presented live in Amsterdam. Pitch teams who are unable to travel can join the event via video conferencing tool.
    • Pitches for film projects take place November 22 to 24.
    • A moderator is present to coordinate post-pitch discussion and stimulate connections.
    • Each project will have one-on-one meetings with professionals interested in the project. These are arranged by the Forum staff based on preferences of the project team and decision makers, as well as input with the Forum staff.
    • For project teams and decision makers attending the event in person, pre-arranged meetings take place November 22 to 24. Online meetings with projects and decision makers who cannot attend in person take place November 25 to 26.
    • All projects are featured through the IDFA Forum online project collection (with a trailer or other sample material, project information, and a still), where they can be securely viewed by decision makers who have a password.
    • All projects are also featured in IDFA Forum's printed publication which is distributed to IDFA Forum passholders.

    All projects undergo a stringent selection process. Only projects that have been submitted according to the IDFA Forum entry regulations below will be considered.

    Eligibility criteria and practical information for Rough Cut Presentations

    Eligibility criteria

    • Creative documentaries intended for theatrical distribution, TV broadcasting, and/or other platforms.
    • A minimum of 75% of your material must be shot and the project must be in post-production/rough cut stage.
    • Projects that previously pitched at IDFA Forum are encouraged to submit.
    • Projects must be looking for festivals, distributors/sales agents, and/or TV buyers. Preference is given to projects without a world sales agent.

    Practical information

    • Rough Cut Presentations will take place on November 21
    • During the event in Amsterdam, the Forum will host Rough Cut Presentations in a cinema, where project teams briefly introduce their project, show an excerpt of twenty minutes, and participate in a short, moderated Q&A. Project teams who cannot travel to Amsterdam will still be able to show their rough cut in the cinema, accompanied by a recorded intro and outro.
    • The presentation format allows you to feature your full rough cut on IDFA’s online platform, where it is made available to key groups of acquisition and exhibition professionals. It is also possible to include a short introduction to the rough cut file, to give context on e.g. what stage you are in and what work still will be done on the film.
    • Each project will have one-on-one meetings with professionals interested in the project. These are arranged by the Forum staff based on preferences of the project team and decision makers, as well as input from the Forum staff.
    • For project teams and decision makers attending the event in person, pre-arranged meetings take place November 22 to 24. Online meetings between projects and decision makers who cannot attend in person take place November 25 to 26.
    • All projects are hosted online in a secure environment where they can be viewed by decision makers who have a password and an IDFA Forum or Docs for Sale accreditation.
    • All projects are also featured in IDFA Forum's printed publication, which is distributed to IDFA Forum passholders.
    • If you are selected, your rough cut file (the thirty-minute excerpt and potential presentation) must be delivered by October 21 in order to be included on our website and shown in the cinema.

    Eligibility criteria and practical information for the Producers Connection

    Eligibility criteria for projects

    • Creative documentaries looking for international co-production partners as part of their financing strategy are eligible.
    • Preference is given to projects aimed at theatrical distribution, however, projects intended for TV broadcasting and/or other platforms are eligible as well.
    • Projects must be in development or late development.
    • Short films are not eligible.
    • There are no restrictions regarding the amount of financing already in place.

    Eligibility criteria for independent producers

    • Producers must have a proven track record with international co-productions and must be interested in co-producing as part of their business model.
    • Production companies must reside in a country that provides funding for minority co-productions.

    Practical information

    • Presentations are presented live in Amsterdam and will take place on November 20.
    • A moderator is present to establish a friendly atmosphere in the room and assist the team in presenting their project and production company.
    • Each project will have one-on-one meetings with independent producers interested in the project. These are arranged by the Forum staff based on preferences of the project team and independent producers as well as input from the Forum staff.
    • Pre-arranged meetings between projects and independent producers take place on November 21.
    • All projects are featured online through the IDFA Forum online project collection (with a trailer or other sample material, project information, and a still), where they can be securely viewed by independent producers who have a password.
    • All projects are also featured in IDFA Forum's printed publication, which is distributed to IDFA Forum passholders.

    ​General entry regulations for all categories

    • It is only possible to apply for one Forum category with the same project
    • IDFA Forum is open to independent production companies and producers from all over the world.
    • Providing visual materials (trailer or other examples of your project) is highly recommended. Incomplete applications without sufficient documentation will not be considered for selection.
    • By submitting a project to IDFA Forum 2021, you agree that the project will not be withdrawn after selection.
    • Please make sure to complete the IDFA accreditation form as well. The accreditation form offers producers the opportunity to indicate if they would like to attend the IDFA Forum even if their project is not selected. You can find the accreditation form in your MyIDFA account starting July 1.
    • If your project was previously selected for IDFA Forum, you can only apply again for the Rough Cut Presentations category.
    • Unfortunately, due to the high number of entries we cannot give feedback to projects that are not selected.
    • To make a balanced selection, the selection committee takes into consideration: the artistic quality, uniqueness of the content, stage of development, subject, team, extent of exposure at other international markets, country of production, amount of financing in place, and genre, among other criteria.
    • If you have submitted or are planning to submit to IDFA and/or Docs for Sale 2021, the project is not eligible for IDFA Forum.
    • There is an entry fee of €25 (excl VAT). Exemptions can be made for countries from the DAC list. Please e-mail the Forum staff to request a fee waiver.
    • The applicant will guarantee to have secured clearance from the copyright holders of any copyrighted materials included within the submitted film/project and any photographs submitted relating to the film/project for all purposes for which the material will be used by IDFA. The applicant will guarantee to hold IDFA harmless from any claims from copyright holders in relation to use of the submitted film by IDFA for the agreed purposes. IDFA reserves the right to disqualify any film with unauthorized inclusion of copyrighted materials.

    ​Entry fee

    • All Forum entries will be charged an administration fee of €25 (excl. VAT) per entry. Exemptions can be made for countries from the DAC list. Please e-mail the Forum staff to request a fee waiver.
    • In case you fill in a company which is based outside the Netherlands in the billing address, you will not be charged additional VAT by IDFA, but you will have to pay your VAT duties in your own country.
    • If this country is a member of the European Union, you need to fill in your VAT details in the billing address field. For general VAT rules within the EU, please go to EU Tax and Customs info.
    • If you have a company based outside the EU, IDFA will not charge VAT but you will need to check the tax regulations in your own country and act accordingly.
    • All Dutch submissions and all submissions done by private persons only (with no company attached) will need to pay VAT and will be charged in the IDFA invoice.

    Disclaimers:

    • Your entry or accreditation will not be taken into consideration until we receive your payment.
    • We apply a no-refund policy to which we can make no exceptions.
    • Your payment will be handled by Adyen. This name may appear on your bank statement.

    ​General selection regulations

    • A maximum of two projects can be selected per company. For each selected project, two participants (the pitch team) are allowed to attend the Forum, as included in the project fee.
    • The pitch team (producer and director) must be present for the full Forum activities, including pitch/presentation and meetings. The exact days of participation depend on presentation format and whether the team can attend in person in Amsterdam. The Forum will run from Saturday, November 20 to Friday, November 26.
    • If your project is selected, you must include contracts or letters that prove any financial investment listed in your entry form. These contracts or letters of commitment from broadcasters and financiers must state the amount of the investment and must be written in English. The letters must be dated and signed.
    • After selection of the project, the participation fee must be completed online by October 21, 2021.
    • The Forum staff strongly advise first-time pitchers at IDFA to register for the pitch training (for selected projects only).
    • After IDFA Forum, all participants are asked to participate in a guest survey and a questionnaire of the financial impact of the Forum to help us evaluate the year’s edition.
    • By providing your trailer or other visual material and stills, you give IDFA permission to publish the material on www.idfa.nl and use the material for promotional purposes for IDFA Forum 2021. If, for safety reasons, the material cannot be published, let us know immediately after selection.
    • If the selected project is completed in due time, IDFA Forum will be referred to in the credits as 'This film was presented at IDFA Forum 2021” or “This project [or work] was presented at IDFA DocLab Forum 2021.” The Forum logo can be provided by the staff. All participating projects are invited to add their film (upon completion) for free to the catalogue of Docs for Sale, IDFA’s sales market for creative documentaries.
    • All participating projects are offered a fee waiver code to submit to the IDFA festival (upon completion). Please contact the Forum staff.

    ​Selection fees

    Fees for participation in IDFA Forum 2021 are:

    Presentation fee per project: €450 (€544.50 incl. VAT 21%). This fee includes:

    • Presenting your project at the IDFA Forum event, taking place from November 20 to 26
    • Featuring your project in the official Forum selection, as published in our online and print catalogue
    • Curated (in-person and/or online) one-on-one meetings
    • A maximum of two IDFA Forum accreditations for the project team*
    • Access to social and networking events arranged during the Forum in Amsterdam
    • Access to IDFA's Industry Program of talks, sessions and networking events**
    • Online access to company profiles, strand profiles, and contact information of accredited guests

    *Additional for Rough Cut projects:

    • Two Docs for Sale Participants passes for the project team
    • The rough cut will be featured on the Docs for Sale webpages

    ** Additional for DocLab Forum projects:

    • Access to a special interactive program and social hubs organized in collaboration with IDFA DocLab

    Fee for attending Producers Connection as an independent producer without a project: €360 (€435.60 incl. VAT 21%). This fee includes:

    • Access to the Producers Connection event
    • Curated (in-person and/or online) one-on-one meetings with the selected Producers Connection projects
    • One IDFA Forum accreditation that also gives Observer access to Forum Pitches and Rough Cut Presentations
    • Access to social and networking events arranged during the Forum in Amsterdam
    • Access to IDFA's Industry Program of talks, sessions and networking events
    • Online access to company profiles, strand profiles, and contact information of accredited guests

    Fees for the pitch training, which require separate registration after selection, will be announced.

    For questions about pitching and training fees, please e-mail the Forum team.

    The Producers Connection is made possible by Eurimages. IDFA Forum is made possible by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands.

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