Raindance Film Festival is the largest independent film festival in the UK, currently rated top 10 international film festival for filmmakers to consider, according to studiobinder. It is based in the heart of London’s buzzing West End film district.
Raindance Film Festival is officially recognised by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences USA, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and the British Independent Film Awards. Winners of Best Animation Short/Best Documentary Short/Short of the Festival) categories will qualify for Oscar®, and selected shorts also for BAFTA considerations.
- World-renowned programme of the best UK and international independent films
- Masterclasses with special guests
- Raindance Industry Forum – talks and panels
- Raindance Immersive strand
- Networking events
- Emerging filmmakers focus
Each year, Raindance attracts dozens of thousands of visitors including hundreds of industry professionals into London. The 31st Raindance will take place in the Autumn 2023.
Amongst others, Raindance has hosted the UK premieres of What's Eating Gilbert Grape, The Blair Witch Project, Dead Man’s Shoes, Memento, Humpday, Love Exposure, Ghost World, Capturing the Friedmans, Down Terrace, I Origins and Old Boy. Our programming receives plaudits from press and public alike. We have a keen interest in work from first time filmmakers, female filmmakers, stories from the LGBTQ+ community, stories on social injustice and environmental issues, horrors and last but not least music documentaries.
Over the years, the festival has hosted such guests and filmmakers as Christopher Nolan, Terry Gilliam, Shane Meadows, Ken Loach, Marky Ramone, Iggy Pop, Anton Corbijn, Quentin Tarantino, Faye Dunaway and Lou Reed. Over the last few years our international Jury has included Sean Bean, Imelda Staunton, Celia Imrie, Martin Freeman, Gareth Edwards, Ewen Bremner, Jason Flemyng, Andrew Scott, Tom Waits, Vicky McClure and Sheridan Smith among top UK industry guest jurors.
Raindance members get a discount on their first submission each year. If you are a member email firstname.lastname@example.org to receive your unique waiver code relevant to the membership you have purchased. Please include your membership number and expiry date. To join Raindance please go to: https://www.raindance.org/membership/
Raindance Jury Awards:
- Best Director
- Best Screenplay
- Best Cinematography
- Best Performance
- Best International Feature
- Best UK Feature
- Best Documentary Feature
- Discovery Award
- Best Short of the Festival
- Best UK Short
- Best Documentary Short
- Best Animation Short
- Best Music Video
Raindance Special Awards:
- Film of the Festival decided by audience
- Spirit of the Festival decided by the founders
Raindance Immersive Awards:
- Best Narrative Experience
- Best Documentary Experience
- Best Immersive Game
- Best Immersive World
- Discovery Award: Best Debut
- Spirit of Raindance: Immersive Experience of the Festival
The 31st Raindance will take place in the autumn of 2023
1. Submission Deadlines
Submissions will be accepted from 4th July 2022.
The early deadline is Monday 10th April 2023.
The regular deadline is Monday 8th May 2022;
The final late deadline is Monday 12th June 2022. Early entry is encouraged but in no way guarantees acceptance.
2. Submission Format
Films must be submitted via online screener ONLY. We do not accept subsequent cuts or more complete versions of submitted films, therefore changing or updating the originally submitted link is not accepted. Only one version of the film will be reviewed by programmers.
3. Submission Eligibility
- All submissions must have been completed after 1 January 2022.
- Raindance requires at least a UK premiere for any feature film.
- There is a London premiere policy for UK films
- There is no premiere policy for short films and music videos.
- Work-in-progress and films with distribution are accepted.
4. Premiere Status
- Feature Films must be at least UK Premieres: they must not have been released in the UK on any format, nor screened publicly online.
If, after you submit, the premiere status of your feature film changes rendering it no longer available for at least UK premiere, please let us know immediately and withdraw your film from submissions.
- There is no premiere policy for short films and music videos, they may have screened at other Festivals and/or online.
- We accept London premiere for UK films
5. Film Classification
All films screened during the Raindance Film Festival receive a blank 18 certificate from the relevant council in London. This means we cannot accept anyone underage during any screening of the Festival. Please take this into account when submitting to Raindance.
6. Submission Fee
All submissions for Raindance are to be paid through FilmFreeway platform. The submission fee is non-refundable.
7. Shipping - for selected films ONLY
If selected your DCP should be sent to:
Raindance Film Festival
10a Craven Street
London WC2N 5PE
If the film is selected for the Festival all shipping and postage costs for DCPs and additional materials sent to and returned from Raindance must be borne by the submitting party. Raindance will not accept Cash On Delivery shipments. Raindance will not absorb any fees incurred in British customs. All charges must be pre-paid.
8. Selection of Films
Submissions are reviewed and selected under the following criteria:
- Quality of narrative and production values.
- Independent nature of the production.
Raindance endeavours to complete all selection procedures by 15 September 2023 and inform all submitting parties, in writing, if their film has been successful or not after that time. Successful submissions will receive a Filmmaker Festival Pack that will include important information on shipping the DCP to the Festival, press and publicity, guest accreditation, contact information and how to make the most of participating in the Festival.
10. Festival Screenings - for selected films ONLY
Selected films MUST provide a Digital Cinema Package (DCP) in order to be screened at the Raindance Film Festival, as well as a backup Blu-ray. The film title MUST be clearly labelled on the DCP and Blu-ray. All foreign language films MUST contain English subtitles files.
Blu-ray will be used as backup only. Please clearly label whether your film is PAL or NTSC. Our facilities do NOT support DVD, tape, 35mm, Super 16mm, 8mm or double-head formats.
A selected DCP must be received at Raindance no later than TWENTY days prior to its scheduled screening date.
Our partner cinema uses pin sharp Sony 4K Digital Cinema projection, making DCP screenings look incredible. Raindance aspires to provide the best quality projection possible but will not be held liable for any failure in the technical quality of the projection, nor will fees be refunded in any such case. Raindance assumes that the submitting party or filmmaker(s) or entrant(s) or print source company has insured for damage and loss of the festival DCP.
11. Scheduling - for selected films ONLY
Screenings are scheduled at the discretion of Raindance. Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule, Raindance reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. Raindance will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a change in scheduling.
No film may be withdrawn from the festival programme after its selection.
12. Promotion - for selected films ONLY
Selected films must acknowledge that Raindance reserves the right to promote the films on Raindance website and social media using both images and video that you provide.
13. Festival Awards
Jury prizes for Feature Films: Best UK Feature, Best International Feature, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Performance, Best Cinematography, Best Documentary and the Discovery Award.
Jury prizes for Short Films: Best Short, Best Documentary Short, Best Animation Short, Best UK Short.
Jury prizes for Music Videos: Best Music Video.
If shortlisted for a Jury prize the online screeners of the film must be made available for the duration of the festival for all the jury members.