Why does BUFF exist?

We want to change the face of British film. We want it to reflect all of us, not just some of us. That’s why we're delighted to announce our new round of submissions for the 2020 British Urban Film Festival.

We have made great strides in the right direction since our launch 15 years ago in 2005. There's no reason why that shouldn't continue over the next 15 years. Across the film & TV industry, Britain’s filmmakers are much less diverse than Britain itself. And that can sometimes mean it’s much more of an effort to make films and TV programmes diverse, because they have to make an effort. This, in turn, is understandable.

Why I should submit to the best film festival in the U.K for diverse programming?

Founded by Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe MBE, the British Urban Film Festival, has been a pioneering platform for all facets of global diversity since its inception in 2005.

Long before diversity quotas and terminology such as BAME and cis, we have always welcomed, showcased, given coverage to and awarded films which display diverse stories and by filmmakers from diverse backgrounds adhering to the 9 diversity strands:
gender reassignment
marriage and civil partnership
pregnancy and maternity
religion or belief

We are now in our 15th year and want to give clarity to our reclaiming of the word “urban”. For so long, urban has been looked at as an extension of “black”, “underground”, “other” “unworthy”. We know that in every walk of life, urban culture is now more than ever revered as BOLD. UNMISTAKABLE. FRESH and a FRONTIER.

Don't delay, enter today and be in with a chance of making the elite line-up of official selections at this year's British Urban Film Festival.


Only shortlisted submissions will receive further emails or phone calls from the BUFF board after the final submission deadline passes. Correspondence will commence from 7 September 2020 onwards.

MP4's, DVD masters, 30″ x 40″ quad posters and DCP’s will be requested if submissions make the shortlist.

All shortlisted films will be eligible to win a British Urban Film Festival short film/feature film award in 2020.

All shortlisted films will be considered for theatrical distribution in sole conjunction with BUFF Originals.


All scripts selected will be issued with a 2 year licensing deal to commit AAA Film and TV as a producer of the script if it gets produced.

The final shortlist of 3 scripts will be eligible to receive a British Urban Film Festival award in 2020.

Scripts: must be no less than 20 pages and no more than 90.

Drama/Documentary Films: must be no less than 40 minutes and no more than 120.

Short Films must be no less than 3 minutes and no more than 60.

All Music, Spoken Word, Dance & Moving Image videos must be no less than 3 minutes

The festival operates a no waiver policy.

We're particularly keen for submissions which touch on the following:

Cities and towns that are generally overpopulated
Urban street wear and fashion
Urban street food and/ or homegrown agriculture
Urban legends – local heroes and heroines
Environmentalists and urbanites – climate change, plastic landfill in oceans etc
Urban music videos with cinematic storytelling / narrative
Advertorial campaigns combining onscreen and offscreen diversity
Romantic dramas that take place in inner cities and towns
Comedies that expose the flaws in our hierarchal structures – satire, politics, bourgeois, banking
Science fiction that gives hope/ tools/ insight to the next generation – can include cosmic stories (astrology, numerology, crystal healing, spirit animals, supernatural)
Sports – open to all genre but particularly interested in unique sports such as capoeira, free walling, mma, youth boxing
Female-identifying feature film directors and DOP’s.

Overall Rating
  • Greg Hall

    Brilliant festival, really well organised with great communication and promotion. Fantastic selection of films and co-ordinated events, wonderful platform for indie films and well worth enetering!

    December 2019
    Response from festival:

    Loving your feedback Greg!

  • Serena Chloe Gardner

    Great festival with fantastic communication and promotion.

    September 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thanks for your feedback Serena. Your continued support means a lot to us :)

  • Antoine Allen

    Amazing film festival. Will definitely be submitting my future film projects.

    September 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Antoine. We appreciate your support of the festival in the U.S. We look forward to receiving your next entry over the coming months.

  • Alfie Barker

    Great festival, networking and selection of films.. I hope to be back next year!!

    June 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Alfie. We look forward to hearing from you.

  • We were thrilled that our client got selected to screen at British Urban Film Festival and would definitely recommend anyone whose film fits their remit to submit.

    The deliverables needed were probably some of the most expansive we've ever had requested (including Instagram trailers and replications of the poster with their laurels on) but our communication with them was thorough which meant we could arrange what they needed and ask for extensions due to the short turnaround time.

    October 2017
    Response from festival:

    We appreciate the feedback guys, thank you. We look forward to receiving more entries from you over the coming weeks and months :)