Founded in 2001, the Nickel Independent Film Festival is a celebration of local and international independent film. Our annual festival happens in June in St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada, and other workshops, screenings and film challenges take place throughout the year and across the province.

We work to celebrate and inspire independent film in Newfoundland & Labrador.

Along with a week of screenings, the Nickel provides industry related workshops aimed at the professional development of local and visiting filmmakers. It offers a variety of sessions that appeal to emerging filmmakers, the general public, including information sessions, panels, introductory workshops, as well as workshops. Reasonable workshop fees ensure that they are accessible to those that want to participate. There are festival galas and mixers that allow filmmakers to network with industry peers.

This year we will only be accepting submissions of 30 minutes or less via FilmFreeway. If you have a suitable film greater than 30 minutes please email us at



(1) The following terms and conditions (the “Terms”) govern the submission of a film (the “Film”) to The Nickel Independent Film Festival (NIFF), through (FilmFreeway) for consideration for the Nickel Independent Film Festival (the “Festival”). To the extent that this document is inconsistent with any other document prepared by NIFF or anyone else, this document will take precedence. Any questions about these Terms should be directed to the Festival Director via email at


(1) By submitting a Film to NIFF for Festival consideration, the submitter (the “Applicant”) represents that he or she has obtained consent from any and all owners, creators, writers, producers and/or other authorized representatives of the Film whose consent is required to submit the Film to NIFF (the “Film Owners”), and has read, understood and agreed to the Terms.

(2) NIFF may disqualify or reject, but is not required to do so, any submission that it determines in its sole discretion, is not in compliance, in whole or in part, with these Terms, and may do so without refunding any or all submission fees paid by the Applicant or returning the Applicant’s thumb-drive, should they choose not to submit online, through FilmFreeway.


(1) Films submitted to for Festival consideration under these Terms must be submitted in one of the categories provided in FilmFreeway.

(2) Films that do not meet the eligibility requirements for any of the provided categories should not be submitted and will not be considered by NIFF.

(3) For the purpose of the below categories, “Canadian” films are Films that were directed by a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and at least one of the countries of production is Canada. All other films are considered “International” films.

(4) Submitted films must have a completion date on or after January 1, 2019.

(5) The Festival is organized into a series of programmes, subject to change from year to year, but may include, for example: Horror Screenings, Gala Presentations, etc. NIFF may slot selected films into programmes at its discretion.

(7) A film will not be eligible for consideration and should not be submitted if the Film was previously submitted to NIFF for Festival consideration.

(8) All Films must be submitted online as a high-resolution .MOV or other digital form screener (as described below), by the final submissions deadline.

(9) Films submitted to Nickel Independent Film Festival must not be made available for free or paid streaming online until after the festival date (June 13 - 19, 2022). Exceptions to this rule will be considered at the programming committee's discretion.


(1) All Films submitted under these Terms must be submitted in accordance with the procedure outlined herein. NIFF may disqualify or reject any Film that is not submitted in this way.

(2) To submit a film for Festival consideration, an Applicant must: (a) complete the registration process at Festival Freeway and pay the required fee as outlined in article V.2 below and (b) provide to NIFF a digital screener for review by NIFF programming staff. NIFF DOES NOT ACCEPT submissions in any other manner or format (ie. content burned to Read/Write (RW) discs, blu-ray discs or trailers.)

(3) Submitted films must:

a. Contain one version only of the Film, in the original language of production, with English subtitles if the original language is not English;

b. Be in .MOV format or as a data thumb-drive containing Quicktime or other similar file formats);

c. Label the submissions with the following: (i) title, (ii) production company name, phone number and address, (iii) director’s name, (iv) length in minutes, and (v) FilmFreeway tracking number; (vi) email address of the main representative for the film.

d. Ship in accordance with the shipping instructions set out below in sections 8 through 12.

(4) Applicants should test their screeners thoroughly before submitting them. It is the Applicant’s sole responsibility to ensure that the submitted screener plays in its entirety on an industry-standard player. If NIFF is unable to view the digital file, NIFF will attempt, but is under no obligation, to contact the Applicant in order to obtain a replacement copy.

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

(6) If the film being sent is not a final cut of the film, please be advised that the NIFF programming staff will view based on what they have seen. If you do not have your final cut completed before the final submission date, the film will automatically be removed from consideration.

(7) Submitted thumb-drives will not be returned.

Shipping Instructions for file thumb-drive screeners:

(8) All Films must be sent by way of prepaid shipping. NIFF will not accept collect shipments.

(9) The Festival is not responsible for and will not accept shipments incurring expenses for terminal charges, duties, taxes or customs brokerage. Applicants should clearly indicate on all waybills that transportation and customs charges are to be billed to the sender. Any shipping charges incurred by NIFF will be billed back to the Applicant.

(10) Films should not be shipped in excessive packaging or with any materials other than those requested by NIFF. There is no programming value for any submissions arriving in unusual or unorthodox containers.

(11) NIFF is not responsible and bears no liability with respect to clearance of shipments through Canadian customs. However, NIFF recommends that Applicants sending submissions from outside of Canada take the following steps to increase the chance of successful review by Canadian customs:

a. Include three copies of a commercial invoice (declaration of contents) containing the following:

i. Sender’s name, address and telephone number

ii. Recipient’s address

iii. Title of film and format

iv. Length of film

v. Fair market value (standard is CAD $20)

vi. Country of manufacture

vii. Declaration “Goods on loan for Festival purposes only. No commercial value. Non-pornographic”

viii. Sender’s signature

b. The commercial invoice should be included with the courier waybill. Applicants shipping via international post should affix a customs declaration label to the outside of the package.

(12) NIFF does not confirm receipt of shipment, and is not responsible for lost or misdirected packages. It is the Applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the submission procedure is complete, and that the screener has been received by NIFF.


(1) NIFF will consider for inclusion in the Festival all eligible films that have been submitted by the above deadline and in accordance with these Terms. NIFF reserves the right to consider for inclusion in the Festival, and include in the Festival, films received at any time and through any means, channel or process, including means, channels or processes other than those outlined in these Terms. Nothing in these Terms or otherwise requires NIFF to select for Festival inclusion any of the Films submitted through the process outlined in these Terms.

(2) All selection decisions are at the sole and absolute discretion of NIFF, and are final and not reviewable. NIFF is not required to provide any feedback, comments or reasons, or any other information, regarding the selection or non-selection of any submitted Film or the process by which Films are or have been selected. NIFF is not responsible or liable for its selection decisions; for the contents of any internal comments or feedback regarding the Film that are or may be obtained from the Applicant or anyone else; for any communications by any representative of NIFF relating to the Film or the Festival selection process; for the manner in which the Film shall be, is or was considered and reviewed; or for any failure on the part of the Festival to provide the Applicant or anyone else with information concerning NIFF’s consideration and/or review of the Film.

(3) NIFF will notify by May 11th, 2020 all Applicants who have been selected to participate in the Festival. All Applicants who are not selected to participate in the Festival will be contacted by email on or around May 11th, 2020. NIFF will contact Applicants using the contact information provided in the Festival Freeway registration form. Applicants are responsible to provide correct and functional contact information. NIFF is not responsible for any failed attempts to contact Applicants using the contact information provided.


(1) By submitting the film to NIFF, the Applicant and Film Owners (the “Submitting Parties”) hereby warrant and represent that: (i) the film is wholly original and is not copied from and does not include any other work that is the subject of copyright or other protection, unless such work is in the public domain or the Submitting Parties have obtained any and all consents, releases, licenses, and other authorizations or waivers of any kind necessary for the inclusion or reproduction of any person, character, location, thing, trade-mark, sound recording, musical composition or other work in the film; (ii) the film does not defame any person or violate the common law or statutory rights, including, without limitation, the rights of privacy and publicity or any other right of any person; (iii) the film is not the subject of litigation; (iv) there are no agreements, nor will there be any agreements made subsequent to the date of this Film submission that would or could have the effect of impairing the Submitting Parties’ ability to provide the film as contemplated herein, or otherwise conflict with any provision of these Terms; and (iv) the Submitting Parties have the full right, power and authority to submit the film to NIFF for Festival consideration, and to grant all of the rights granted hereunder and in the Festival Freeway registration form, and there is no obligation or disability which would in any way impair, restrict or impede the Submitting Parties from fully performing all obligations pursuant to the submission and these Terms.

(2) The Submitting Parties agree to indemnify and hold harmless NIFF, its licensees, successors and assigns, and its and their members, officers, directors, employees, agents, representatives, associates and affiliates (each, a “Releasee”), from any claim, suit, action or other proceeding brought against a Releasee and from any losses, costs, or damages, including the Releasee’s full legal costs, which it may have suffered or incurred or may suffer or incur, directly or indirectly based on, in connection with, or arising from the use and exhibition of the Film submitted by the Applicant or the breach or alleged breach of any representation, warranty or other agreement made by the Applicant in these Terms, or in the Applicant’s FilmFreeway registration form.

(3) NIFF takes all reasonable anti-piracy precautions. While in NIFF’s possession, all Films are securely stored and regularly inventoried. Access to Films is limited to NIFF staff requiring access in order to screen and consider submissions. Duplication and loaning of Films is not permitted. By submitting a Film to NIFF, the Submitting Parties hereby release NIFF from any and all liability in the event of theft, unauthorized access or copying, or any breach of copyright of the submitted Film while it is in NIFF’s possession.

VIII. Other

(1) NIFF reserves the right to rule, in its sole discretion, on cases and situations not foreseen by these Terms.


The Nickel Independent Film Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional and screening 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 Nickel Independent Film Festival 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.

By submitting to the festival, the undersigned agrees to accept a screening fee in $CAD as determined by and equivalent to the 2020 CARFAC schedule. The Nickel agrees to pay a screening fee to each selected film that is submitted via the regular submission process (but not films admitted via full fee waivers) according to the CARFAC schedule for film festivals.

Following best practices in presenting standards for artists, we:
- Invite filmmakers to introduce their films and offer Q&A's
- Encourage attendance by offering full passes to filmmakers, assist with accommodations, etc, where possible
- Ensure high quality screenings by hiring an experienced reel editor and technical director
- Own/rent the best digital HD equipment available and present screenings in a professional theatre
- Conduct pre-screenings each day.

Overall Rating
  • Angel Panag

    Excellent festival based in Newfoundland. You can tell it is done with the love of film in mind. Strongly urge creatives to submit to this festival. If selected, they compensate well for your work.

    August 2021

    it was a great honor to play "Nuovo Cinema Para-Virus" at this year's amazing festival! thank you so much!

    August 2021
  • Tathagata Ghosh

    Terrific festival which is meant for filmmakers. The passion they have for cinema is so inspiring and it was a great honor to play "The Scapegoat" at this year's festival. Can't wait to be back again.

    August 2021
  • Jake Delaney

    Communication was great. The organizer, Devin, kept in touch and made sure to get all the detail needed to be able to showcase our films. The pre-screening interviews gave a great opportunity to hear from some of the filmmakers. Looking forward to getting back to a live screening format, though.

    August 2021
  • Joe Chang

    Great festival that gives opportunity for film makers to be acknowledged! Thank you so much for selecting my film.

    August 2021