Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival is an international festival of experimental film and artists’ moving image, working toward its ninth edition. The festival is held in Hawick, a small rural town in Scotland known for its intimate atmosphere and friendliness. Our festival is international and world class in scope, screening works from around the world. We specialise in showcasing experimental, avant garde filmmaking of the highest standard, including features, shorts, expanded cinema performances and installations in unique venues around the town.

Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival is organised each year by Alchemy Film & Arts, a registered Scottish Charity (SC042142), one of only 121 organisations to receive regular funding from Creative Scotland, and the only organisation to receive such funding in the Scottish Borders. Alchemy Film & Arts also engages in year-round developmental projects for experimental film and artists’ moving image production in Scotland, including artists’ filmmaking Residencies, international Touring Programmes, Community Filmmaking initiatives and an increasingly popular Exhibitions Programme. In 2017, we curated Scotland's national entry to the Venice Biennale , with a major new film commission by the artist filmmaker Rachel Maclean.

We are a non-competitive festival and do not offer awards or prizes.

Short films and features that are experimental. We rarely screen conventional narrative shorts or documentaries unless they are very unusual.

General Terms of Entry – 2019 Festival submissions

Once a work has been submitted, it may not be withdrawn at a later date.
Deadline for submissions: midnight 30th November 2018

There is an earlybird entry fee of just £5 (approx $7 / €6) for each film submitted before 30th September 2018. For entries received after that date, the fee is £8 per entry. We do not like to charge a fee and we are keeping the fee as low as possible. The number of submissions we now receive is such that we need to find a way of paying for our reviewers’ time to watch the many hundreds of entries we receive. Paying the fee ensures your film gets the attention it deserves. If your circumstances are such that you are unable to pay this fee, please contact us by email through this website to make a request for a fee waiver, fully explaining your circumstances.

For 2019, we will be paying screening fees of £20 to participating artists for each selected work. While we recognise this sum is low, we are working towards being able to pay artists’ union rates for film screenings. If your work is with a distributor we will require you to negotiate a screening fee waiver with them if your work is accepted.

Works made between 2017 and 2019 will be prioritised by our reviewers. You are welcome to submit older works, though these may be less likely to be successful.
Premiere status is NOT required for our festival – our objective is to screen the highest quality work, regardless of where it has been seen before. However, we do appreciate the opportunity to host World, International, UK or Scottish premiere screenings and your film may more likely be selected if this is the case.
Our Festival is committed to remaining non-competitive in atmosphere – prizes and awards are not offered.

Copyright in the submitted work at all times remains wholly with the author(s) of the work.

Submission of work to the Festival is a non-exclusive arrangement. It does not imply the transfer of any exclusive distribution or other rights to Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival beyond the terms of the Festival itself.

We are open to submissions of any subject matter.

You can be at any stage in your career – from student to established artist, but your work must evidence a strong commitment to the moving image as an artform.

All submissions must be made through this online form, providing evidence of your payment. If a submission is made without payment, it will not be reviewed.

All submitted preview links must remain valid until at least until 6th May 2019. Due to the geographically distributed nature of our review panel, we prefer Vimeo links to DVD screeners. If you send us a broken link or incorrect password, your work will not be reviewed.

We regret we are unable to return preview screeners sent to us on DVD, USB stick or other physical media.

If selected, full details of your work, including an image, short synopsis, short biography and website link will be included in our website. It may also be included in summary form in any printed media we produce.

If your film is selected, you will receive an invitation to attend the Festival and to participate in a screening Q&A. We are usually able to offer paid-for accommodation for visiting artists, which is granted on a first-come, first-served basis. We are not usually able to help with travel or per diem expenses, though we are happy to issue formal invitation letters to assist in your own fundraising for travel expenses.

All necessary permissions, releases and clearances will have been obtained by the submitting individual in advance for participation in the Festival. The submitting individual bears full legal responsibility for ensuring permissions have been granted for the use of any and all copyrighted material in the submitted works for the purpose of the Festival screening.

Where the work has an existing distribution partner, sales agent or other third party with a legal or financial interest in the work, the submitting individual will have gained permission for inclusion in this Festival on the basis of these terms and conditions prior to submission.

The person submitting the form must possess the right to accept these terms and conditions.

The information you submit will not be shared with any third party beyond the immediate staff and selection/jury panel of Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival. We will never share any of your data with anyone else.

We may add your email address to our mailing list, and mail you details about the forthcoming festival, our events, residencies, future Alchemy calls for entries and other relevant opportunities from time to time. We send newsletters out every 1-2 months. We won’t share your information with anyone other than Alchemy Film & Arts, and you can unsubscribe at any time. You can view our full privacy policy here:

Any still images, text descriptions, artist biographies and website addresses you submit may be used freely by Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival in the promotional materials of the Festival.

If accepted, up to 20 seconds of your submitted film may be used within a video trailer for the Festival, without charge and fully credited.

Once a work has been submitted it will be reviewed by an international panel of experienced artist film programmers. Each work will be scored for issues of quality, commitment, creativity and overall fit within the programme by more than one person on the panel.

Due to the large number of submissions we are unable to provide feedback on individual works, nor can we offer any mechanism for appeal should your work not be accepted.

You will be notified if your work has been accepted no later than 1st March 2019, by email only.

Once a work has been accepted, you will need to provide us with a high quality digital version of the work for us to edit into the Screening Programme, within four weeks of the acceptance notification. Failure to send your files/films on time will result in exclusion from the Festival programme.

For final screening/exhibition copies – in the case of digital video files, this will mean uploading a high quality H264 or ProRes Movie file to a cloud storage space which we can access (such as Dropbox), or sending it to us on a portable hard drive or USB stick. In the case of 16mm films, we will require the film print at least one week before the Festival start date in order to do a test screening.

You are responsible for covering shipping costs in delivering screening copies to us. We will cover the shipping costs of returning any film prints, hard drives or USBs to you at the end of the Festival.

Overall Rating
  • Pablo-Martín Córdoba

    Great festival, I was very happy to be part of the 2018 edition. Thank you very much!

    December 2018
  • Michael Lyons

    Alchemy has quickly become one of the most interesting events worldwide for experimental and art-oriented film. Very well organized festival with excellent production quality.

    May 2016