The International Black & Diversity Film Festival – IBDFF is an independent film festival and part of the Black Actors & Film Guild Canada registered as a Canadian not-for-profit association established to give a platform to Black Actors, Writers, Artists, and Filmmakers while celebrating cultural diversity through inclusion, bringing independent films and filmmakers from around the globe to showcase their work here in Toronto, Canada every year! Showcasing Black Cinema through diversity that Toronto as a multicultural city is known for.

IBDFF main focus is to promote Films made by Blacks, or by other race with Black Actors in key roles, or films that showcase Black realities from across the Globe, IBDFF is also open to the inclusion of independent films that can be seen and appreciated by those interested to learn about other cultures hence promoting a blend of cultural diversity through film. By so doing we would achieve our objectives of promoting Black Films to a diverse audience and filmmakers in attendance.

Our inclusion of other nonblack filmmakers (Independent Filmmakers) through cultural diversity, is one way of educating other nonblack filmmakers of the need to understand the Black culture in general, while at the same time educate Black filmmakers about other cultures and the need for inclusion of others regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, disability, and other barriers that filmmakers face no matter where they are from.

Live Movie Screening:

There will be a Live Screening of Official Selected Movies at The York Cinema Richmond Hill, Albion Cinema, North York, Toronto Public Library Auditoriums. There Screening at our Gala Party in Toronto.

In addition to screening movies live, the IBDFF festival will be more personal and hands-on as we will be having workshops, panels of discussion on different issues that will be beneficial to Actors, Screenwriters, Filmmakers, and other stakeholders alike. We will showcase and screen videos that relate to black history and educate our audience of historical black figures, Black Icon, and other Black-related matters, which includes current Black Role-models’ filmmakers within our communities doing outstanding things. This is our way of educating, promoting, and celebrating amazing films made by Black filmmakers.

The idea behind the IBDF Festival event is that it is a combination of a year’s worth of community-building through several smaller events that enhance and educates the audiences with unique cinematic and cultural opportunities, resulting in the community-wide film festival.

Films are selected from entries screened by panels of judges selecting the best of the best films for award consideration. IBDFF is a festival that prides itself in showcasing independent films that celebrates the brilliance of Black filmmaking, from emerging and established filmmakers, yet celebrating the diversity in filmmaking through the inclusion of films from around the Globe, Canada, and locally here in Toronto, connecting filmmakers and the community in one place.

At the IBDFF annual event every year in late Spring, we will be having a host of the events that include Screening of Movies selected by our screening panels live at the York Cinema Richmond Hill, Albion Cinema, North York, and other screening venues, Fashion shows, Local Artist Performing Live, and awarding Filmmakers with actual Trophy Awards presented to filmmakers!

Official (Jury) Prizes:

Black Film Categories:

Best Narrative Feature - By A Black Filmmaker
Best Documentary Feature - By A Black Filmmaker
Best Short Narrative - By A Black Filmmaker
Best Short Documentary - By A Black Filmmaker
Best First Feature Narrative - By A Black Filmmaker
Best Web series - By A Black Filmmaker
Best Music Video - By A Black Filmmaker

International Film Categories:

Best Narrative Feature - International Film Category
Best Documentary Feature - International Film Category
Best Short Narrative - International Film Category
Best Short Documentary- International Film Category
Best Director - First Feature Narrative
Best Web series - International Film Category
Best Music Video - International Film Category

Best Movie Trailer / Teasers (5minutes Max) – All Category
Best Movie Posters – All Category

Audience Favorites
Programmers' Awards
Festival Director Awards
Achievement Awards


The evaluation process is a three-stage process:

• Reviewing for official selection by the jury and selection of Finalist.
• Screening for sets of filmmakers and audience to review and vote for the best film.
• Declaration of Festival Finalist.
• Finalist gets a screening at the annual event and competes with other films for “Best of the Best Picture”

Rules & Regulations:

• The competition is open to films from Black Filmmakers, or films made by anyone with Black Actors in Key Roles. We also accept all films in the international category, Films made by Canadians.

• If accepted, your film could be screened either live, or in a digital format, or both. At this time, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, IBDFF reserves the right to modify the delivery of its festival programming based on government rules and regulations related to the pandemic. At this time, our festival is planned as a hybrid event, with both digital and live screenings.

• Please check individual categories and submit suitable categories to your project.
• Feature films are 30 minutes in length or longer. Short films are under 30 minutes in length. All non-English speaking films must be presented in their original version with English subtitles.

• All Entries with or without distribution deals are welcome.

• Films previously entered and screened at our festival are eligible for one additional re-entry in subsequent years.

• Entries must be submitted for pre-screening online. See our submission section If you use a secured link, you are REQUIRED to keep us updated with passwords.

• Works in progress are accepted. We cannot promise that we will be able to watch re-edited submissions. Please only submit works in progress if submitting close to the final deadline.

• IBDFF confirms that the festival has permission to exhibit your film(s) during the festival and /or at any other Festival event. Submission of a work implies that the Festival can employ moving image excerpts and reproduce stills of exhibition promotion. Credit will be given to any filmmaker or screenwriter of such material is used in Festival promotion. The original copyright holder retains all rights to their work.

• You may submit multiple entries but must pay an entry fee for each.

• If the movie has nudity or sex. The movie should have a strong storyline; however, we are strictly not accepting any movies about porn, animal cruelty.

• To submit a Film for Festival consideration, Applicants must complete the registration process at FilmFreeway and pay the required fee by the deadlines.

Submissions must be postmarked or online submitted via FilmFreeway. Submitted DVDs must contain one version only of the Film, in the original language of production, with English subtitles if the original language is not English.

• DVDs must be labeled in the following manner: Title. Production company name, phone number, and address. Director’s name. Length in minutes and FilmFreeway tracking number.

• Where the applicant chooses to forward a DVD instead of an online screener, the Applicant is responsible for ensuring that the submitted DVD screener plays in its entirety on an industry-standard DVD player. If IBDFF is unable to view the DVD, IBDFF is under no obligation, to contact the Applicant in order to obtain a replacement DVD.

• IBDFF will not review multiple versions of a submitted Film. Only one version of the Film may be submitted. If multiple versions are submitted, IBDFF will view only the version that was received first.

• Note! DVD screeners will not be returned.

• All Films must be sent by way of prepaid shipping. IBDFF will not accept cash-on-delivery shipments or be responsible for duties, taxes, or customs brokerage. Charges are to be billed to the sender. IBDFF is not responsible for and will not accept shipments incurring expenses for terminal charges, duties, taxes, or customs brokerage. Shipping and customs charges are to be billed to the sender. Any shipping charges incurred by IBDFF will be billed back to the Applicant.

About our Waiver Policy:

We believe in a fair policy for each and every filmmaker. We try to keep reasonable fees for all submissions, and we offer regular discounts to students and new filmmakers, however, no waivers at this stage.


I/We have read all of the International Black & Diversity Film Festival – (IBDFF) rules.

I/We understand and have complied with these rules.

I/We warrant the submission of my/our original work and there are no disputes regarding the ownership of the submission.

I/We also warrant the submitted material does not defame or invade the rights of any person living or dead and I/we fully indemnify the Festival against any claim made for such violations of law.

To the best of my/our knowledge, all of the statements herein are true and correct.
I/We understand that failure to adhere to the Festival rules will result in disqualification and forfeiture of the entry fee.

I/We agree to hold IBDFF harmless from and defend them against all claims, demands, losses, damages, judgments, liabilities, and expenses (including legal fees) arising out of or in connection with any and all claims of third parties, whether or not groundless, based on any film submitted to the Festival.

I understand that the festival projection format may change and I will be notified of the required format once my film is accepted.

All selected films must be available to screen, we will inform you of the appropriate screening format.

Overall Rating
  • Ophilia Davis

    I had a wonderful time at the event. The committee was very professional and they were very organized. Thank you for the opportunity! I am truly grateful.

    August 2023
  • Ken Sagoes

    We are deeply honored that “The Secret Weapon: Yesterday is Today" was selected as a finalist in your remarkable festival! The festival is well-organized with great communication. May the festival continue to provide filmmakers a platform that fosters creativity and self-expression.

    August 2023
  • Asase Amoah

    The IBDFF is a great Festival

    July 2023

    The IBDFF was awesome. Full of inspiration, excitement, and reason for motivation. I met wonderful people in the industry. Ready to partner with a production company and get the TV pilot produced. I would ask that the festival share any feedback with the screenwriters so we can improve our craft. Looking forward to next year.

    July 2023
  • Their online presence was wonderful.The website made it easy and simple to view films. I secured a deal with a distributor for my documentary North Town. Thanks IBDFF!!!!

    July 2023