The Norwich Film Festival is a BAFTA Qualifying Short Film Festival (Section B)* as well as a BIFA (British Independent Film Awards) Qualifying Short Film Festival* and was chosen by The Metro as one of "the top UK film festivals you need to know about".

All submissions must be 25 minutes or less (including titles/credits) to be in consideration.

We have been running since 2009 and have screened over 1000 films to the public.

The festival has an amazing array of celebrity patrons including Stephen Fry, Tim McInnerny, Olivia Colman, Julian Jarrold, Brian Cox & John Collee.

We also work hard to recruit industry judges for our Grand Jury who are all eager to watch our nominated films.

Previous final-round industry judges have included Stephen Fry, Neve Campbell, Alfred Molina, Michael Sheen, Emma Freud, Bernard Hill, Alistair Petrie, Edith Bowman, and Roger Michell. The full list of NFF2024 judges will be updated on our website and social media platforms throughout the year.

As well as screening selected films to the public, winning films will also receive a trophy, a certificate, a cash prize, and a selection of other industry related prizes. Furthermore, we will help to promote your film to a global audience.

*Only British short films and animations will be eligible for BAFTA/BIFA status as per their guidelines. See the BAFTA and BIFA websites for further details.

We are pleased to be able to offer £6000 worth of cash prizes to our selected winning filmmakers. This will consist of:

Best British Short Film - £1000
Best International Short Film - £1000
Best Animated Film - £1000
Best Student Film - £1000
Best Documentary Film - £1000
Best East Anglian Film - £1000

Each category winner will also receive a trophy and a certificate.

Any additional prizes will be updated throughout the year on our website and social media platforms.



Festival Dates:

11th – 24th November - please note that exact dates may be subject to change. The festival will be in-person, with any online aspects to be confirmed in due course.

Submission Deadlines:

Submissions will be accepted from 15th Jan 2024. Best prices will be offered to those submitting before our Earlybird submission deadline of 25th Feb 2024. The very latest we will accept submissions is 23:59 on 30th June 2024 - this does come with a higher submission fee.

• Earlybird (15 Jan – 25 Feb)
• Regular (26 Feb – 26 May)
• Late (27 May – 23 June)
• Extended (24 June – 30 June)

For the avoidance of doubt, films submitted during later deadlines are given the same consideration as films submitted during earlier deadlines. A film submitted at the start of the submission period has the same chance of being selected as a film submitted on the final day.


Awards will be given to the best film in each of these categories:
• British Film
• International Film
• Animated Film
• Student Film
• Documentary Film
• East Anglian Film

To be eligible for the Best East Anglian Film Award, the film must have been made predominantly in the region, or by filmmakers either living or studying in the area at the time of production. The region is defined as Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, and Essex.

Submission format:

• Films will only be accepted via our online portal at This is our only method of submission.
• No postal submissions will be accepted.
• Your film must be watchable in full via a browser at the time your submission is received. We recommend using FilmFreeway’s direct upload feature, Vimeo or YouTube. Submissions not containing a watchable film will not be considered.
• If your film is not in the English language, subtitles must be burned-in or able to be turned on via the player.
• Refunds will not be offered if you fail to adhere to these rules.

What to include in your submission:

At the time of your submission, we require the below to be included and available via your FilmFreeway submission.

• Your full film (watchable within a browser)
• A 100 word synopsis of your film
• Key credits (director, producer, writer, key cast)
• A brief director biography
• At least 5 high stills from the film (not BTS stills)

If there is anything you’d specifically like to tell us about your submission, you may also add a brief cover letter and/or director statement.

For convenience in the event that your film is selected, you may also wish to add the below, but these are not essential at the time of the submission. We recommend you include at least the following:

• A trailer
• A poster (portrait, 300dpi)
• A press kit
• Behind the scenes images

Should your film be accepted we will require digital images and other press/publicity materials to help us promote your film and the festival at large. Please do not, however, send hard copies as we will be unable to store them at the Festival office due to the high volume of submissions we receive. Any hard copies sent prior to acceptance will be recycled.
FilmFreeway allows digital press packs to be uploaded with submission, and we strongly recommend you do this to avoid missing out later.

The more (digital) information you include with your submission, the more we can promote your film once accepted into the festival. Of course, if non-essential assets are not ready at the time of submission, you may provide these at a later date.

Submission Eligibility:

• Films preferably would not have been released in the UK in any large-scale public format or shown on UK television prior to the Festival dates. This does not include other festival screenings or small-scale in-person & online screenings.
• Films completed after January 2022 are eligible for submission.
• Your film must be no more than exactly 25 minutes in duration, including any credits.
• At this time, we do not accept music videos as submissions.
• The film must be your own work – all credits must be accurate. If you are submitting on behalf of somebody else, this must be clearly stated on your submission.
• All rights, permissions and clearances must be obtained prior to submission and applicants must ensure that they have the right to submit the work with regard to third parties connected to the production of the film in question. By entering your work, you agree to this and the responsibilities involved. The Norwich Film Festival assumes no responsibility for violation of copyright law.

Whilst we can accept work-in-progress films, we generally advise against this unless your film is picture-locked and only has relatively minor changes remaining, such as credits, colour grade and sound mixing. The version of the film we receive is the version we will base our decision upon, so we advise not submitting an incomplete version of the film unless you are comfortable with your film being considered in its current state.

Please note that submission fees will not be refunded if your film does not meet these conditions.

Submission Fees:

The Norwich Film Festival runs on an extremely limited budget. We regret that, owing to the large number of submissions we receive, we must charge a small fee to cover our administrative costs, as well as the costs of running the festival each year. These fees are in pounds sterling (foreign currency conversion is handled by FilmFreeway at the time of transaction).

• Earlybird
For films received as per the dates above, the entry fee for early bird submissions is £25.00. Student entries will be charged at £20.00 (proof required).
• Regular
For films received as per the dates above, the entry fee for regular submissions is £35.00. Student entries will be charged at £30.00 (proof required).
• Late
For films received as per the dates above, the entry fee for late submissions is £45.00. student entries will be charged at £35.00 (proof required).
• Extended Deadline
For films received as per the dates above, the entry fee is £60.00. Student entries will be charged at £35.00 (proof required).

There is a discount for those films that are eligible for the Best East Anglian Film (those films made in Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, or Essex). These films will cost only £20.00 during the Early-bird deadline, and £25.00 for the remainder of the submissions window.

Valid proof of status will be required for student submissions and East Anglian submissions in order to be moved from pending to in consideration.

We are a GOLD FESTIVAL on FilmFreeway, which allows for certain members to obtain further discounts. Please see for more information. We offer a 15% discount on submission fees for Gold Members.

We are unable to waive fees under any circumstances so please do not contact us to request that we make an exception, as we won’t be able to help you.

Methods of Payment:

All entries must be made through FilmFreeway, which accepts online payment. If, for some reason, you are unable to pay through this website, we will accept Paypal payments, made to

Please note, if you intend to pay online, Paypal charges 3.4% per transaction, so please add a £1.50 transaction fee to any submissions sent via this method.

Submissions will not be accepted until payment is received in full.


If requested, any publicity materials should be sent to:
NFF Submissions Team
c/o Larking Gowen
Prospect House
Rouen Road

The entrant must pay all shipping and postage costs incurred in submitting work to us. The Festival will not accept Cash on Delivery shipments and will not absorb any fees incurred in customs. Submission packages from outside the UK must be labelled 'No commercial value - for cultural purposes only' on any customs label and for customs purposes must be given a value of no more than US$10, £10 Sterling or 10 euro.

Please remember to put the FilmFreeway submission number on the envelope (ie: 24NFF0001)

Receipt of Submission:

Once you have submitted your film online, please check your account to find out if the Festival has received your submission.


Selection will be carried out by the Norwich Film Festival team. No correspondence will be entered into regarding the selection process and the decision of the Festival Executive Committee are final. We aim to inform successful applicants by the end of August at the latest. Unfortunately, due to the volume of entries and time constraints, we will be unable to offer individual feedback or enter into any discussion about your work.

Successful submissions will be listed on our website ( and social media outlets, and successful applicants will be notified by email or over the phone. Please therefore make sure that we can reach you in the months of August and September so that we can confirm your film's inclusion in the Festival programme.

Please note that only successful applicants will be notified personally. If we are unable to contact you during this period your film may be removed from the Festival line up.

Festival Screenings and Scheduling:

All screenings during the Festival period will take place at the discretion of the Festival. We reserve the right to make changes to the advertised schedule at any time for any reason and will not accept liability for any costs incurred as a result of such changes.

No film may be withdrawn from the Norwich Film Festival programme by its submitter after its selection / participation has been confirmed.

The Festival is not able to cover the costs of any format transfers or subtitling. Digital screening copies of selected titles (if requested) must be received by the Festival by 15 September 2024. Please use the following format only:
• H264, 1920 x 1080, 48 kHz 24-bit audio, .mov wrapper.
• Export using square pixels.
• Files should not exceed 10GB.
• Dropbox is our preferred delivery method as it minimises failed downloads. Please send to
• You may also send files via WeTransfer, to the above email address.
• FilmFreeway allows films to be uploaded to the submission platform, and we highly recommend this as a back up.

Copyrights and clearances:

All entries must be the original work of the entrant and must not infringe upon the copyrights, trademarks, rights of privacy, publicity or other intellectual property or other rights of any person or entity. If the film contains any material or elements that are not owned by the entrant and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, the entrant is responsible for obtaining, prior to the submission of the film, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit use and exploitation of the film by Norwich Film Festival in the manner set forth in the official rules without additional compensation, including, without limitation, location releases for footage shot at any location; name, voice and likeness releases for any person whose name, voice and/or likeness appears in the film (other than entrant); releases for the use of any props, set dressings and other materials used in the film; releases from any individuals participating in the production of the film and releases for any other audio and/or audio-visual materials not wholly owned by entrant, which, in each case, are used in the film (collectively the “Clearances”). If any person(s) appearing in any film is (are) under the age of majority in their place of residence, the signature of a parent of legal guardian is required with each release. All signatures must be original.

Our rights:

Norwich Film Festival reserves the right, at any point during the competition, in its sole and unfettered discretion, to disqualify and remove any film that potentially or actually infringes any third party’s copyright(s).
At any time during the Competition, Norwich Film Festival reserves the right, in its sole and unfettered discretion, to disqualify and remove any film that it believes does not fall within the entry requirements in these official rules.
Norwich Film Festival reserves the right, in its sole and unfettered discretion, to verify at anytime during the Competition that all necessary Clearances relating to any film have been obtained. If we believe, in our sole and unfettered discretion, that an entrant has failed to obtain any of the necessary Clearances relating to the entrant’s film, the entrant’s film will be disqualified and removed.

By participating in this Competition, entrants agree that during the Competition Period, Norwich Film Festival and its sponsors and partners are authorized to display the films on the Norwich Film Festival website and on any and all other media in connection with the Competition. By participating in the Competition, entrants grant permission to Norwich Film Festival to use their names, likenesses, photographs, voices, sounds and/or biographical information and films in connection with the Competition and for any and all advertising, publicity and promotional purposes relating to the Competition without additional compensation, unless prohibited bylaw. This will extend to cover the period used to promote the next festival as well.

As a condition of entering the Festival, each entrant grants Norwich Film Festival: i) the right to display their film, in whole or in part, on the Norwich Film Festival website and/or on any websites owned or operated by or on behalf of Norwich Film Festival or any of its related or affiliated companies, and on any website owned or operated by or on behalf of Norwich Film Festival; ii) the right to use their film to create trailers, either for individual films or as a collection of films; and/or (iii) the right, if his/her film is selected, to display the film on any website owned or operated by or on behalf of Norwich Film Festival following completion of the Competition Period. Entrants will be fully credited where possible, and retain sole ownership of their work

Limitation of Liability:

By entering into this Contest, entrants hereby release and discharge Norwich Film Festival and its respective affiliates, subsidiaries, assigns, agents, representatives, independent contractors, officers, employees and directors from and against any and all claims, liabilities, costs, damages and expenses of any kind arising out of or relating to their participation in this Contest, their use or acceptance of any prize, the use by Norwich Film Festival of any films submitted by entrants and/or any actions or decisions of Norwich Film Festival in connection with the conduct and administration of this Contest. Entrants hereby waive any right to seek injunctive or other equitable relief in connection with any claim against Norwich Film Festival, any of the Co-Sponsors, or any of their respective affiliates, subsidiaries, assigns, agents, representatives, independent contractors, officers, employees and directors.

Cancellation Process:

Should the festival organisers decide to cancel the festival without reason prior to the Official Selection, every effort will be made to reimburse those who have paid to submit their film.

Should the festival get cancelled without reason after the announcement of the Official Selection, priority reimbursement will be given to those filmmakers who have been selected to be a part of the festival. Those filmmakers who were not due to be a part of the festival because their film was not selected will not be reimbursed.

In the event of circumstances being beyond the control of the festival organisers (such as natural disaster, viral/bacterial pandemic, etc) then every effort will be made to pause, postpone, or amend the festival so that it still goes ahead in some form. We will never look to cancel the festival if we can look to rearrange. In such circumstances, no refunds will be issued as submission fees will be used to continue the planning of the festival at a different place or time.

Thank you for your interest in submitting to the Norwich Film Festival.

We look forward to receiving your film!

Overall Rating
  • This year we have presented our short film EL FUNERAL at NFF and it has been an incredible experience of receptiveness, organisation and seriousness on the part of the festival. An endearing event, they love cinema and take great care of it!

    December 2023
  • Julien Allen

    Excellent festival and great communication from the team.

    December 2023
  • Zoe Hunter Gordon

    I had the most amazing time at Norwich with my film BETTER. Ewan and the team were really welcoming, the curation of the films is stellar and the audiences are really engaged and interested in cinema. I loved the other filmmakers in our lineup, and found the chilled networking events really lovely. Thanks Norwich!

    November 2023
  • Sunita Soliar & Statten Roeg

    We were sad to only be able to make it up to Norwich for one day, due to illness, and just catch our block. The events that the festival put on looked great and we were sad not to be able to see more films and meet more filmmakers. But the team were extremely helpful all the way through the process and very responsive and kind. The screening was well attended, which was exciting, and it all went smoothly. Norwich is a great festival and we are very proud and grateful that Spoor was a part of it!!

    November 2023
  • Neeraj Bhattacharjee

    I'm really grateful that I could be a part of this amazing festival with my short film. Great communication from the team throughout, they were really helpful and quick to respond anytime I had any queries.

    November 2023