💜 2024 MINT CFF Competition: Call for Entries 💚

Focusing on inclusivity and diversity, the second edition of MINT Chinese Film Festival continues to call for submissions from Chinese filmmakers and talents of Chinese cinema. The Competition comprises two sections: Feature Competition and Short Film Competition. We have invited a number of internationally renowned filmmakers, visual artists, and film industry experts to join the jury. The submissions are open to global creators of Chinese films. It is hoped that our inclusive initiatives can remove political, geographical, and other concerns of our prospective participants.

We especially encourage women filmmakers and emerging film talents to submit their latest works. We also welcome experienced film artists to participate in the Competition. Our goal is to showcase a diverse range of independent and pioneering Chinese films on the big screen of the UK.

The call for submissions will close at 23:59 15th December 2023. We only accept works submitted through FilmFreeway, where the submission portal is now open.

About us:

Mint Chinese Film Festival (MINT CFF) is the first women-organised Chinese film festival in the UK. Founded by Chinese film curator Yixiang Shirley Lin and Keswick Alhambra Cinema’s co-owner Dr Carol Rennie, the festival focuses on cross-cultural communication and the representation of women. Mint CFF has recently officially registered in the UK as a Community Interest Company. As a year-round active film festival, Mint CFF not only holds an annual Chinese film festival at the Keswick Alhambra Cinema, but also curates and organise pop-up film screenings and relevant cultural and artistic events in various venues across the UK and other regions around the world. To date, we have collaborated with different individuals and organisations to deliver special film screenings and touring exhibitions in London, Paris, Beijing, and so forth.

The inaugural festival concluded on February 5, 2023, at the Keswick Alhambra Cinema in Cumbria, and was a tremendous success. The attendance of the three-day cultural extravaganza exceeded 1,000 people, with 75% being ethnically Chinese and 70% being female or non-binary.

Co-founders and the curation team of the MINT CFF are now actively developing and preparing the new MINT Creative Programme, competition sections, special film programmes (including Emerging Women Filmmakers Showcase and Retrospective Screenings), panel discussions, workshops, and other online and offline festival activities. We also plan to offer a limited number of free festival passes to our media friends and emerging curators. Stay tuned for more exciting content on our website, unicornscreening.com!

Our vision :

We are dedicated to curating for underrepresented voices, images, and stories, actively discovering and supporting Chinese film creators, emerging women filmmakers and artists, and gender-diverse directors. We aim to introduce independent high-quality Chinese films and other cultural and artistic works (especially those created by women) to regions which rarely have the opportunity to engage with Chinese cinema and culture.

🏆Five major awards with cash prizes opportunities 💵:

👉Best Feature
👉Best Short Film
👉 Jury Prize (Feature)
👉Jury Prize (Short Film)
👉Audiences’ Choice Award.

What do we offer to shortlisted filmmakers?

The MINT will provide shortlisted works and directors with diverse screening and networking opportunities, including but not limited to the standard theatrical screening in the UK, international promotion and special distribution, filmmakers’ interviews, thematic forums, and a series of derivative interactive activities. In addition, winners of the Competition have the chance to receive cash prizes, festival laurel in recognition, membership of Keswick Alhambra Cinema, exclusive in-depth interviews, and global touring exhibition opportunities. Works which are not shortlisted may also be selected for international screenings outside the festival period.

At the first edition of the festival, the winner of the best short (Zhizi Hao, A Firecracker Story) obtained a £300 grant from the MINT aiming to stimulate creation and support Hao’s filmmaking endeavour. Besides that, we provided all the shortlisted films with follow-up promotion opportunities, such as international screenings and interaction with audiences.

💜The MINT Chinese Film Festival Competition Rules and Regulations💜

Please read it carefully before submitting!

I. Competition Entry Guidelines

1. Eligibility:

A film only needs to fulfil one of the below conditions to be eligible. Please read the conditions carefully and confirm eligibility before submitting films.

The film revolves around Chinese-related themes or elements which include but are not limited to Chinese communities, Chinese stories, Chinese perspectives, Chinese diaspora, and Chinese cultural memories.
2) The cast and/or crew of the film (including director, producer, and main cast) are from China or Chinese-speaking regions or identify with Chinese culture in the broadest sense.

2. Deadlines:

1) Regular deadline: 23:59 15th November 2023 (GMT).
2) Specially extended deadline: 23:59 15th December 2023 (GMT)

*The festival recommends prospective participants to submit their films as early as possible to allow the festival selection committee and the jury enough time for viewing, assessing, and discussing the films.

3. Steps of Registration and Submission:

1) The festival only accepts films submitted via FilmFreeway.
1.1)Click the button above to submit your work.
1.2)Successful registration requires providing information and materials and submitting films as per instructions.

2) Please Note:
2.1) Prospective participants should provide comprehensive film information and relevant materials as per the requirements listed on the submission page. Missing important information will affect the selection process. Please only provide commonly used email addresses and telephone numbers for submission.
2.2)Please do not submit more than one work.
2.3) The festival requests participants to tick the option ‘Festivals may download my video upon my permission’ on FilmFreeway to allow follow-up contact regarding selection or other screening and networking opportunities (see the picture below).

2.4) Should you be unsure about your film’s eligibility and have any questions, please consult the festival team promptly before the Call for Entries’ final deadline (15th December 2023) via email: mintchinesefilmfest@gmail.com.

II. Submission Requirements

Production Time:

1) Feature films must not be produced earlier than 2021.
2) Short films must not be produced earlier than 2022.


2.1) Films submitted should have a minimum resolution of 1920×1080p.
2.2) Should the film be selected, please ensure to submit a copy for official screening (either DCP or MP4 file with a resolution of 1920×1080p in H. 264) at least one week before the festival’s opening.
2.3) Should the film be selected, participants need to actively cooperate with festival staff at least two weeks before the opening to provide relevant promotion materials in both English and Chinese, including but not limited to official high-resolution posters and stills, trailers, Q&A with directors, and/or introduction videos. (Resolution and format requirements for video materials are the same as above.)

* Shortlisted directors who need translation service due to special reasons should contact festival staff by email in advance.


3.1) Feature films: no less than 60 minutes.
3.2) Short films: no more than 30 minutes.

Genre and Content:

4.1) A wide range of genres and schools are accepted, such as drama, narrative film, experimental films, animations, documentaries, artists’ moving images, film series (single episodes), essay films, and poetic films.
4.2) The festival does not accept advertisements, culture and tourism promotion videos, public information films, music videos, personal vlogs, and marketing clips.


5.1) Embedded English subtitles are required for non-English films. Embedded bilingual (English and simplified hinese) subtitles are required for Chinese-speaking films. (*It is recommended that all films prepare embedded bilingual subtitles in English and simplified Chinese.)
5.2) In case of special circumstances, prospective participants may send the required SRT subtitle files to festival staff via email.

III. Selection Criteria

1. Selection Dimensions: The assessment will be based on five dimensions which are production quality, film aesthetics, narrative structures, originality of expression, and thematic alignment (e.g., alignment with themes of this global call and the festival’s vision).

2. Selection Procedure: Once submitted, all eligible films will first be reviewed in one or two rounds by youth volunteers selected by the festival. Next, those films will be forwarded to the selection committee for further assessment. Films selected by the committee will be passed on to the jury for final assessment. The shortlists for Feature Competition and Short Film Competition will be announced through official channels on or around 20th January. Winners of Best Feature, Best Short Film, Jury Prize (Feature), and Jury Prize (Short Film) decided by the jury will be announced on site during the festival and posted online subsequently. Additionally, there will be an offline audience vote during the festival. The film winning the most votes will be presented the Audiences’ Choice Award.

3. Result Announcement: The festival will notify corresponding Competition participants of shortlisted films via email after the selection procedure concludes. Please ensure to check the emails used for submission regularly. The shortlists will be announced on the formal platform of the festival before official screenings.

IV: Event Rules

Obligations and Rights
1) For the Festival:
1.1) The festival shall keep all entry content confidential, and only use it upon permission from Competition participants.
1.2) The festival may promote and screen all entries during the festival. With the consent of Competition participants, the festival may promote and screen the entries outside the festival.
2) For Competition Participants:
2.1) Competition participants shall commit that they possess full intellectual property rights of the entries worldwide or have obtained written authorisation from right holders. They shall also commit that they can exercise the aforementioned rights in accordance with all submission rules. Competition participants own and have the right to exercise the entries.
2.2) Competition participants shall guarantee the legality of the entries. The entries may not violate laws and regulations in both the UK and China, infringe copyright and other rights and interests of others, or breach legitimate rights of any third party.

2. Declaration:
1) The festival does not charge screening fees from or offer subsidies to shortlisted participants. Submission of short film is free before the regular deadline. Please see FilmFreeway for the fee information.
2) All submission fees collected by the festival will be used to support the organisation and operation of the Competition and as cash prizes.
3) Entries shall be original. There shall be no intellectual property disputes. Competition participants shall be the lawful copyright holders of the entries and prepared to provide screening authorization in written form as required by the festival if needed.
4) Films submitted after the final deadline will be excluded from the selection procedure. All eligible entries may not be withdrawn from the Competition or the screenings at will.
5) All those who complete the Competition submission are considered to acknowledge and accept the festival rules and regulations. The festival reserves the ultimate right to interpret all terms and any matter not covered herein.

V. Shortlisted Films
1. Awards and Opportunities
1) Shortlisted films will have the opportunity to compete for the five major awards: Best Feature, Best Short Film, Jury Prize (Feature), Jury Prize (Short Film), and Audiences’ Choice Award.
2) The festival will provide shortlisted works and directors with diverse screening and networking opportunities, including but not limited to standard theatrical screenings in the UK, international promotion and marketing, thought exchange with other filmmakers, thematic forums, and a series of derivative interactive activities.
* Winners of the Competition have the chance to receive cash prizes, festival laurel in recognition, membership of Keswick Alhambra Cinema, exclusive in-depth interviews, and global touring exhibition opportunities. Works which are not shortlisted may also be selected for international screenings outside the festival.

2. Screening Copy
Screening copies should be DCP or MP4 files with a resolution of 1920×1080p in H. 264.

3. Publicity Materials
After a film is shortlisted, its entry information provided on FilmFreeway and promotional materials submitted will be used on the festival official website, on the official website of the festival’s partner cinema, and in online and offline media promotion. The festival is entitled to edit and publicly use film introduction information presented through festival official channels. In case of missing and incorrect information or materials during the submission stage, they should be submitted or corrected after the films are shortlisted.

4. Filmmaker Participation
After a film is shortlisted, the festival will contact corresponding Competition participants to discuss their participation in the screenings, post-screening discussions, and other arranged events during the festival.

5. Premiere Status
Once a film is shortlisted, public screenings which will affect the film's premiere status at the festival are not allowed.

6. Screening Schedule
All shortlisted films will have at least one public screening during the festival. Screening time, dates, and venues are entirely at the discretion of the festival. The final schedule is subject to festival official announcements via email or other social media.

7. Festival Laurel
After a film is shortlisted and/or awarded, the festival will provide corresponding laurel. The film must incorporate the laurel in all formal copies and subsequent promotional materials. Modifying the laurel is strictly prohibited.

Overall Rating
  • Thank you for including us in your wonderful festival, we were happy to be a part of the 2nd edition of MINT! Although we did not attend in-person we felt the benefits of participating gave our film a great amount of exposure to connecting with audiences in the UK even through the internet. The critics program is a great and unique opportunity offered by the festival for the selected films to forge intimate connections to the UK audience.

    February 2024