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BIFF 2014 – Open For Submissions

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With just under six months to go until Bradford International Film Festival 2014  in partnership with Virgin Media starts, we’re very excited to announce that we are now open for film submissions. Each year we look forward to seeing the huge variety of films that have been made since the last edition of the festival and this year is no exception. You can submit your film now via Withoutabox and don’t forget that the earlybird deadline is November 8th.

Here are a few words from festival Co-Director Tom Vincent on what the festival looks for in a good film submission:

“This summer I met a group of young filmmakers at an event at BAFTA for directors who are forging their careers. There was a lot of talk that day about what to do with films once they have been made, of the various merits of hosting films on websites and about the role film festivals can have in creating opportunities for emerging filmmakers.

The more I learn about film festivals and what they mean, the more I realise that festivals are a way of adding value to films. This can be via prizes, press coverage, a distribution deal, reviews, and via merely being selected. Film festivals are also a way of selecting films for audiences; a role that is arguable more necessary than ever in an age of overwhelming and abundant choice.

If your film is shown at Bradford International Film Festival (BIFF) it’ll have a platform there as something special, as worth seeing alongside new films that have been invited to Bradford from all over the world, alongside selected retrospective of older films that we think are interesting, and alongside some famous guests. Something that audiences and filmmakers alike have come to love is BIFF’s policy of screening short films with feature films wherever possible. This means we can create quirky double-bills like the one on p.58 here Universal Soldier Day of Reckoning plus experimental shorts. I think one of BIFF’s strengths is that professional and non-professional filmmakers can mix on equal terms with general film audiences. Last year, among names that the man on the street would know – Mark Kermode, Sir Tom Courtenay – we ere equally honoured to provide some of the first public platforms for talented people who were just starting out like Charles Chintzer Lai.”


One of the next phases for the festival is to develop better links with talented new filmmakers with distinctive voices in the district, and we have created a new system to guarantee people who have used a Bradford location that their film will be considered for BIFF at no cost. Finally – what kind of films are we looking for? Anything really, that has that indefinable something that makes people want to keep watching and keep imagining. There’s no set recipe for this, and I only bear a couple of things in mind when I watch submissions: “is the film achieving what it’s trying to achieve?” and “is what the film is trying to archive worthwhile?” Part of the mission of BIFF is like the city that hosts it; to try to connect all kinds of films together; new, old, generic, experimental, local, international, happy, sad etc etc.. Because as Louis Armstrong said of music, there are really only two kinds of any art – good and bad”.

The 2014 edition of Bradford International Film Festival will take place from 27 March – 6 April followed by the annual Widescreen Weekend from 10 – 13 April. More programme details and updates will be announced in early 2014. Keep an eye on our website, facebook and twitter for regular updates and behind the scenes news.

We look forward to seeing you at the festival.

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Written by Fozia Bano

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