DOXA is Western Canada's largest documentary film festival, presented by The Documentary Media Society, a Vancouver based non-profit, charitable society (incorporated in 1998) devoted to presenting independent and innovative documentaries to Vancouver audiences.

The society exists to educate the public about documentary film as an art form through DOXA Documentary Film Festival, a curated and juried festival comprised of public screenings, panel discussions, industry forums and educational programs. The 19th annual DOXA Documentary Film Festival will take place May 7 thru 17, 2020 (now postponed due to COVID-19. Date to be determined).

Our Mission:
To support a better understanding of the complexity of our times through engaging the public in documentary media as an art form.

We’re Committed To:
*Cultivating curiosity and critical thought.
*Promoting the intersection of actuality and artistic expression.
*Fostering a local and international community interested in non-fiction media.

DOXA aims to pay all independent filmmakers selected through the submission process a screening fee and/or assist with travel/accommodations to attend the festival.

The DOXA award winners are selected on the basis of three major criteria: success and innovation in the realization of the project’s concept; originality and relevance of subject matter and approach; and overall artistic and technical proficiency.

DOXA Feature Documentary Award
DOXA Short Documentary Award
Colin Low Award for Canadian Documentary
Nigel Moore Award for Youth Programming

Total prize value to be determined.

*Projects screened or broadcast in Vancouver prior to the festival are ineligible.
*Projects completed after January 1, 2019 will be prioritized.
*You may submit with an online screener. Please do not send DVD or Blu-Ray.
*Rough cuts are eligible ONLY IF final cuts will be available by March 15, 2020.
*Work produced in languages other than English must be subtitled in English.
*Please enclose a brief synopsis and screening history.
*More weight is given to projects which do not take a conventional journalistic or commercial approach.
*Fee waivers are available for Indigenous filmmakers. Please email selina [at] for more information.
*All entrants will be notified by April 3, 2020. Please note that due to COVID-19 our notification date has now been postponed. We will be in touch as soon as we have a clearer idea of our dates.

DOXA Documentary Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations.

The undersigned shall indemnify and hold harmless The Documentary Media Society ("DOXA Documentary Film Festival"), its Board of Directors, Employees, and Agents, from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.


Over the last few weeks, much has developed regarding the global COVID-19 crisis and response, as I’m sure you are aware. We at DOXA have been conferring urgently to ensure we are doing everything we can to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. The health and safety of our patrons, our staff, our volunteers, and our wider community is our primary concern at this time.

It is with great consideration, and heavy hearts, that we have made the decision to postpone the 2020 DOXA Documentary Film Festival, which was scheduled for May 7 thru 17, 2020. We are currently exploring alternative festival dates, and hope to find an appropriate solution as soon as possible.

We remain extremely grateful for the support of our documentary community, and for your patience as we make the difficult decisions required by these exceptional circumstances. DOXA is now, more than ever, committed to supporting a better understanding of the complexity of our times through engaging the public in documentary media as an art form. We will be sending out updates as soon as possible.

Thank you for your understanding.

Overall Rating
  • Miguel Eek Quesada

    I spend a great time in Doxa. Amazing team and film selection.

    May 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Miguel. City of the Dead definitely struck a chord with our audience, and remains one of our personal favourites. We can't wait to see your future work!

  • Jeffery Chong

    Such a great festival with great programming. The DOXA team is wonderful! So many opportunities to see films, and meet filmmakers.

    June 2018
  • Rami Katz

    DOXA is my hometown festival and it was an incredible honour for my film to be selected this year. The team is fantastic, they always have an amazing program, and the industry days keep getting better and better. Looking forward to the next festival already!

    June 2018
  • Lonnie Nadler

    We had two excellent screenings at DOXA and their entire team was amazing throughout the entire process. Screenings went very smoothly and there was a genuine sense of care provided by all the staff and volunteers. It was a real honor to premiere at DOXA.

    June 2018
  • Rick Miller

    An excellent, well established festival with experienced and friendly staff. Great venues and great audiences in one of the most beautiful cities in North America. Highly recommended.

    May 2018