The mission of the North Dakota Human Rights Film and Arts Festival (NDHRFF) is to educate, engage, and facilitate discussion around local and world-wide human rights topics through the work of filmmakers and artist. 2018 is the second year for both the film and art festivals.

The film festival encourages filmmakers from around the world who have produced documentary, narrative or experimental films that engage human rights related topics or themes to submit their work to the festival. While the festival rules out films that contain unacceptable inaccuracies of fact, films are not barred on the basis of a particular point of view. Films from both new and established filmmakers will be presented. International filmmakers are welcome to submit their work. Films for the festival will be selected via Jury, with equal concentration on human rights content and artistic merit.

In 2018, selected films and filmmakers will have the opportunity to have their films screened in three cities: In Grand Forks, North Dakota on Thursday, November 8 at the Empire Arts Center; in Bismarck, North Dakota on Tuesday, November 13 at the North Dakota Heritage Center; and in Fargo, North Dakota on Thursday, November 15 and Friday, November 16 at the Fargo Theatre in Fargo, North Dakota.

If you have any questions about the festival or work submission, please email inquiry@human-family.org

Each category within the festival will host a juried competition for "Best of...". Additionally, an executive committee will award a "Best of Show" award annually to recognize a work with high artistic and informational value. Additional awards may be given within each category at the judgment of the jury (i.e. best cinematographer, editing, sound, etc.).

Award winning filmmakers will receive a physical award and small stipend to help with travel to the festival.

Filmmakers who have their films selected for the festival will receive an admissions package to the festival.

NDHRFF Rules:

Rules and Guidelines

- Filmmakers and artist must be authorized to submit their films to the NDHRFF, and have appropriate permissions and clearances for their films or art pieces.

- Filmmakers should include in their synopsis a short statement regarding how human rights are relevant to their works (250 word limit).

- Films in language other than English must include English subtitles.

- Multiple entries are allowed from filmmakers and artist, and each entry may be entered in multiple categories. A separate application form should be used for each film, and the form must be completely filled in. Submission fees apply to each individual entry and category.

- Only online screeners will be accepted. If your country does not have access to FilmFreeway, please contact the festival for a potential waiver to this policy.

- All films submitted under a “Student Fee” category will be listed as a “Student” on all materials including social media and press releases.

- The selection committees’, jury’s and festival director’s decisions are final.

- For filmmakers, theatrical screeners will not be returned. Do not provide the NDHRFF with masters. If you require a screener to be returned or forwarded, contact the festival prior to submission.

- Priority selection may be given to those films or pieces of art that address the annual theme or topic chosen for the festival.

- Entry fees are non-refundable.

- Once selected as a part of the official festival, a film may not pull out of the festival or withdraw its submission.

Rights & Clearances

By submitting your work to the NDHRFF, you grant the NDHRFF permission and rights to utilize an excerpt from any film or artwork submitted and accepted for exhibition for promotional purposes for this and future festivals.The NDHRFF may use images, sounds and excerpts from the films for promotional purposes in all media including the NDHRFF website and may present accepted films in their entirety at the 2017 North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival.

Terms and conditions

The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to submit the film for consideration, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations, and is responsible for the accuracy of all information provided on the application form(s).

Filmmakers of accepted films are responsible for creating theatrical screening prints. Filmmakers and other artist assume all costs of supplying prints and artwork, including postage or delivery fees.

The undersigned shall indemnify and hold harmless the North Dakota Human Rights Film & Arts 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.

The North Dakota Human Rights Film & Arts Festival is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film or artwork submitted and accepted for exhibition for promotional purposes for this and future festivals.The NDHRFF may use images, sounds and excerpts from the films for promotional purposes in all media including the NDHRFF website and may present accepted films in their entirety at the 2017 North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival.

By submitting work to the festival, the filmmaker or artist indicates that you have read and understand the NDHRFF entry guidelines and rules and regulations and that you agree to the NDHRFF Terms and Conditions. Furthermore, you indicate that you shall indemnify and hold harmless the NDHRFF 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 films entered. The undersigned is also responsible for providing the NDHRFF with all up-to-date mailing, email, and phone contact information for results correspondence and results letters as requested.

Overall Rating
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  • Great festival for a first time run regarding Human Rights. Bravo!

    February 2018
  • javad daraei

    I am very happy and welcome every year to participate in your festival and thank you for this fine festival.

    November 2017
  • Tyler Knutt

    An extremely important and well-managed festival. We had a great experience.

    November 2017