IFF ON THE BEACH was founded in 2018. Its first edition was held in Tsarevo, a Bulgarian city by the sea, with the municipality's support and as part of the municipality's cultural calendar. We screened a total of 20 films from 12 different countries. Takahiro Yamaguchi, a director from Japan, was our first international guest. The following edition was held in Sozopol, in the form of three outdoor screenings on the beach, with over 500 people in attendance. The festival's main focus was the "Zero Waste" initiative. We carried out the "Online Pandemic Marathon" action in 2020, which consisted of six online screenings for shared viewing from home. Among them was the world premiere of director Pavel Vesnakov's quartet of short films (in collaboration with Miramar Film) and the screening in collaboration with the Italian Traveling Festival Cinemadamare.

With the support of the Sofia Municipality and the Ministry of Culture our most recent edition in 2023, was held at three location in the center of our capital - Sofia, one of which was the multi-functional amphitheater stage - "Cinema Cabana." The international jury, which included Vernis Klier, Ivaylo Hristov, Maia Vitkova, Yana Titova, and Iliya Volok, was a huge success. Other recent events include the "On the Stream" projection on the theme of water protection as part of the "Rivers of Sofia" festival, as well as actions in collaboration with the "Hristo Botev" community center, Anton village; Subculture Gallery, Yalta Art Room, Chillhouse Bakyovo, "Dog and Dog" bar, "Cinema Culture", "The Steps," and others.

Monthly film screenings and panel discussions in the "YALTA ART ROOM" space for young art.

Collaboration with the Bulgarian Cultural Institute in Paris and the association New Parisian Drama. A selected short film will be selected and screened in Paris and Strasbourg each month.

Outdoor screenings with a mixed program. Main goal - decentralization of the access to culture. Screenings are planned for Koprivshtitsa, Anton, Chavdar, Dolna Malina, Pirdop, Chelopech, and Mirkovo.

French Institute in Sofia
A series of documentary film screenings addressing global environmental issues. There will be workshops and a collage exhibition on biodiversity.

🔮 Immersive Pop-up installation
"Under the magnifying glass"

The project is being carried out in collaboration with the Sapromat Association. The conceptual project for the art installation "Under the Magnifying Glass" (working title) of Spromat aims to attract the attention of people in urban and non-urban environments through an interactive approach which will enhance the effect of various environmental messages. An openwork geometric construction will be combined with special types of reflective materials and various magnifying lenses (optical lenses, magnifiers, fresnel lenses), through which both plant species and different texts, formed in a special typographic style, can be observed.


Screenings at the Open air Cinema in Tsarevo, in collaboration with Post Office for Stories, and in Sozopol, with the intention of forming a collaboration with the arts festival Apollonia.

Water conservation screenings featuring international marine-themed short films, as well as upcoming short film screenings on a variety of topics in collaboration with Subcultura Social Gallery.

❗The Main Competition Program of the International Film Festival "On The Beach"
The fifth edition of the competitive festival will be held in Kino Kabana in early September 2024, as is de rigueur.❗

Our goal is to provide our filmmakers with multiple opportunities to screen their films, and we are constantly working on expanding our partnerships and screening venues.

So feel free to keep on submitting your wonderful work and we can’t wait to see it all!
Prepare your shorts because we are going strong and we're going to the beach!

Bring your shorts to our festival ON THE BEACH and win the Golden Snail Prize for Best Film!

Be a part of this large scale film event on the Black Sea, screen your film, meet and network with like-minded professionals and enjoy the parties on the beach!

We are now open for new submissions for the 2023 season!

All members of our jury are carefully selected and experienced professionals with degrees in motion picture and live performance.

You can submit your short films under 30 minutes.

All submitted films must be subtitled in English or Bulgarian unless the film is in English or Bulgarian.

All official selections will receive a laurel after the notification date.

Awards in the following categories:

Best Film

Best Director

Best Lead Male Actor

Best Lead Female Actor

Best Production Design

Best Cinematography

Best Editing

Best Comedy

Best Animation

Save the Planet Award (for films in the environmental categories).

We accept entries through FilmFreeway's Secure Online Screener or Vimeo.
All genres and languages are accepted, however, make sure that your film is subtitled in either English or Bulgarian.

Please note that all selected films need to send the festival an srt. file (other formats such as PDF or docx are not accepted), as well as provide the team with an option to download the film. Please contact us in case you need guidance.

The submission fees are non-refundable and the submitters do not receive any Box-Office proceeds from the festival.

While we're constantly working on securing multiple venues for screenings, IFF ON THE BEACH reserves the right to make changes in the dates, time and location of the screenings.

The submitter must be a copyright owner or producer.

The festival has the right to use any promotional material sent by the submitter for marketing and publishing related to the festival.

The submitter will be contacted for screening permission before each screening of their film.

Overall Rating
  • Polina Pencheva

    We had the best time at this festival. Excellent films at an amazing venue, super cool, welcoming, and supportive programmers, and amazing parties! The awards ceremony was such an epic night and we had such a blast. Overall, just great people running a fantastic event and celebration of really high-caliber short films - We loved oure experience there and would highly recommend applying - and attending in person!!!

    June 2023
  • Great festival and unbelievable team! Thank you for having us, it was a pleasure to be part of the event!

    October 2022
  • Great idea. We had a screening at the beach :)

    August 2021
  • Nevelin Vulchev

    An amazing organization and communication. Great program!
    Sadly this year was not possible to meet everyone in person but we still enjoy it very much! Very proud to be part of ON THE BEACH International Film Festival 2020! Highly recommends this artistic film festival and we are very grateful that our documentary "A Monologue in the Intermission" was awarded at the festival. We look forward to future editions and wish all the best to the whole festival team.

    September 2020
  • It was a very intriguing festival! I hope to visit it next year too! Good luck!

    September 2020