OKO is a film festival that was born in the beautiful southern Ukrainian region of Bessarabia. Due to the outbreak of war, the festival’s third edition took place in Poland, with the support and within the framework of the renowned EnergaCAMERIMAGE International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography. The 4th edition of OKO will have two parts: Ukrainian and Bulgarian, with the respective dates of September 9-16 in Bolhrad, Ukraine, and September 23-30 in Sofia, Bulgaria*.
*the organizers have the right to change the dates and location of the festival based on the current situation in Ukraine; participants will be informed about any changes.
What is OKO?
OKO is a film festival that takes place in the beautiful southern Ukrainian region of Bessarabia. It is a festival of ethnographic and anthropological documentaries, where the audience will feel the heartbeat of small and large nations, get acquainted with the diversity of cultures, traditions, beliefs, and ways of life. OKO is a multicultural event where filmmakers, folklorists, anthropologists, and ethnographers will be able to better understand each other, share ideas, and agree on future cooperation.
There will be no red carpet; nevertheless, there will be awards and prizes.
Do I pay for a submission?
Submissions for Ukrainian and International filmmakers are free of charge up to the Last Call deadline. You can submit your films via Filmfreeway until July 1st, 2023.
Are there cash prizes?
The winner in the Short Film category will receive an award of 20,000 UAH.
The winner in the Feature Film category will receive an award of 40,000 UAH.
The Audience Award will be given to the film(s) selected by viewers' voting during the film festival in Bolhrad and in Sofia.
There will also be a special prize for Ukrainian and Bulgarian fiction and documentary films that are out of competition.
The best film works will get organizational and informational support and will be recommended for practical implementation and further distribution on the VoD services of MEGOGO (Ukraine) and Neterra.TV (Bulgaria).
The winners of the film festival will be awarded at the closing ceremony.
Which films do we accept?
Documentary films with ethnographic and anthropological values are welcomed. They must correspond to the main subjects of the Contest:
1. Traditional costume.
2. Calendar-ritual event.
3. Ceremony of the family-household cycle.
4. Master class on folk crafts or traditional dishes.
5. Everything related to ethnography and folklore.
6. Films with anthropologic values, including films-portraits.
We also accept Ukrainian and Bulgarian documentaries and fiction films for special screenings out of the competition without any restrictions regarding the year of production. They should be relevant to the topic and genre of OKO. Please submit them marked “Ukrainian and Bulgarian films (non-competitive)”.
Where do I submit?
Applications and films are accepted online. Please send us your online screeners (protected links for downloading or online screeners on vimeo, youtube, etc.). English subtitles are obligatory.
How old my film can be?
No restrictions on the production date. No premiere policy.
What about the screening fee?
The festival does not pay screening fees.
The festival has the right to use short fragments of selected films (no longer than three minutes), for advertising purposes.
Participants agree to show their film as a part of OKO in both Bolhrad, Ukraine, and Sofia, Bulgaria.
After the main event, OKO will travel around Ukraine and our partnering countries with screenings of the winning films in various institutions, including cinemas, palaces of culture, universities, schools, youth clubs, bookstores, libraries, and frontline areas.
Participants agree to show their film as a part of OKO Travels (each screening will be announced).