For the 2nd year in a row... CIFF is recognized as one of "MovieMaker’s 50 festivals worth your entry fee!"

CIFF exists to transform the way visual stories are shared and experienced. We discover and share the best and most remarkable, especially those that would not otherwise be seen. We champion filmmakers, especially new voices, for the delight and benefit of the audience, to whom we are a guide and provider of the best stories, presented within a remarkable festival environment.

We are proud to be the first to debut and give exposure to new filmmakers, particularly championing and fostering Alberta’s own creative voices. Highlighting their work alongside that of established contemporaries, we celebrate the new energy and ideas they bring to the future of the art form, and make them an integral part of the exciting milieu of the festival.


CIFF is pleased to waive fees for Albertan submissions.
The following point system is used to determine Alberta eligibility -- a minimum of five points is required:

Albertan location (2 points)
Resident Albertan as a principle cast member (1 point)
Resident Albertan writer (1 point)
Resident Albertan producer (1 point)
Resident Albertan director (1 point)
Albertan funding source (2 points)

If you are an Alberta production and would like to receive a fee waiver, or need to discuss our point system, please contact the programming department:

NOTE: In order for the fee to be waived filmmakers must contact the programming department to request a waiver PRIOR to submitting their film.

Awards & Prizes

Films invited to the 2017 Festival are automatically considered for nomination in all Award categories for which they are eligible.

Audience Choice Award - Feature Film (Documentary Feature & Narrative Feature)
Audience Choice Award - Short Film (Documentary Short & Live Action or Animated Short)
Best of Shorts – Jury award - Best Short Film & Best Documentary Short
Alberta Spirit Award (Alberta Shorts films only) – Jury award

Note: Any additional award categories are still being finalized for 2017.

The recipient of CIFF's annual Best of Shorts Award is now eligible for consideration in the Animated Short Film / Live Action Short Film category of the Academy Awards®, without the standard theatrical run that a film typically needs to qualify for an Oscar® nomination.

Rules & Terms

Participation in the 18th Calgary International Film Festival implies understanding and acceptance of the following Guidelines and Regulations:


* The film was completed after June 1, 2016 and not previously submitted to CIFF

* All applicable licenses and waivers of copyrights, moral rights, trademarks and other such intellectual property rights have been secured by the filmmaker(s)

* Please do not change the screener link address or password of your submission. If you do, please notify us immediately or you risk your film not being previewed and thus considered for the festival.

* Films in a language other than English must be subtitled in English

* For SELECTED FEATURE films, any theatrical, DVD, TV, digital and/or any screenings outside of the festival, must take place AFTER the Calgary International Fim Festival is over. Unless it's only available outside of Canada, or if it's a theatrical release, then must be in a province outside of Alberta.

* FEATURE Films must be a Calgary premiere. This includes local films.

* Submission fees are NON-REFUNDABLE.

* SHORT FILMS - priority if given to films which have not yet screened in Calgary, or not yet available online. However we do accept competition based created shorts, where screening online is part of the process. i.e. Telus Storyhive.


** Please email us at to let us know of your Albertan eligibility and receive the waiver code!


* All submissions are screened and evaluated by CIFF Preview and Selection Committees. Their reports and decisions are final and confidential.

* CIFF Programmers make final selections and determine in which section they are presented. Designation of a selected film’s program category, exhibition date(s), time(s), and location(s) is at the sole discretion of the Festival. In addition, the entrant grants CIFF the right to exhibit the selected film up to three times during the Festival, in addition to daytime Press and Jury screenings (closed to the public).


* Upon notification of selection, the entrant agrees to immediately supply CIFF with publicity materials and grants the Festival the right to utilize such materials for promotional purposes and to broadcast and/or screen clips.

* Applicants will be notified by email regarding the results of the Festival’s selection process by Monday August 21, 2017.

* Please do not contact the Programming Department regarding the status of your submission before that date.

* Upon invitation, participants will be contacted via email by the Print Traffic Coordinator with format confirmation, exhibition details, and shipping instructions. We will pay one-way shipping on exhibition copies, unless otherwise negotiated.

1 Review

Overall Rating
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    brendan brady

    Fantastic festival with amazing programmers and organizers. Thrilled to have showcased my film here!

    October 2016