We are pleased to announce the 12th edition of the Taiwan International Ethnographic Film Festival (TIEFF), to be held in Taipei from October 5–9, 2023. The biennial festival is the longest running festival of its kind in Asia. Since 2001, by showcasing outstanding documentaries from Taiwan and around the world, TIEFF has introduced the Taiwanese public to a wide variety of anthropological topics as well as the communities with whom anthropologists work. By moving ethnography off of the page and on to the screen, the festival seeks to both attract new audiences to the discipline of anthropology, as well as push the boundaries of what ethnography can do. In addition to the main festival in Taipei, TIEFF also sponsors a touring festival, bringing a portion of the selected films to communities and classrooms across Taiwan.
TIEFF takes a flexible stance regarding what counts as an “ethnographic” film. We present documentary films (and occasionally more experimental genres) that portray communities in a culturally sensitive and historically contextualized way. We showcase films by both “insider” and “outsider” filmmakers, by both established and new directors, by academic anthropologists, professional filmmakers, journalists, educators and artists. We seek films which are made in an ethical manner without sensationalizing their subjects. Films that are the product of long-term close collaboration between filmmaker and subject are especially welcome. TIEFF is especially proud of its commitment to celebrating the uniqueness and vibrancy of Indigenous cultures and has been one of Taiwan’s most important venues for showcasing the work of both local and international Indigenous filmmakers. We strongly encourage filmmakers from Indigenous and other marginalized communities to submit their work to our festival.
All films submitted to the festival must have been completed between January 2021 and January 2023. While we occasionally do accept fiction films, experimental art films, biographies, sports documentaries, and concert films, such films will only be considered if they are accompanied by a convincing statement regarding their suitability for the festival. All festival films go through a highly selective screening process. Films on any topic will be considered, but special consideration will be given to films that match the festival theme (as described below). The festival does not have a competition or offer prizes or awards.
The theme for the 2023 TIEFF is “Media/Memory.” Collective memories -- the stories passed down from one generation to the next within a family, a village, a nation, etc. -- become intimately connected to the media through which they are transmitted. For this year’s festival, we are looking for films that explore such questions as: Why and how are Indigenous and other minority communities losing, reviving, or transforming the traditional media they use to they tell their histories and myths (such as recitation, song, embroidery, and carving)? What happens when traditional stories are told through non-traditional media (such as digital animation)? When traditional media are used to tell new stories? What audiences are gained or lost? Also, photography, the museum, and of course, documentary film, are still often seen as “objective” media that show the reality of their subjects rather than the subjectivity of the photographers, curators or filmmakers. They are also associated with the “capture” and “preservation” of their subjects, fixing them in a particular moment in time, unchanging. How can the associations of these media with objectivity, stasis, and the death or disappearance of the subjects be disrupted?
TIEFF is a non-competitive film festival, thus there are no awards or prizes offered.
1.All films submitted to the festival must have been completed between January 2021 and January 2023. TIEFF is an ethnographic film festival, as such, all films should display an “ethnographic sensibility” (see above).
2.Fiction films, experimental art films, biographies, sports documentaries, and films about musicians must be accompanied by a statement regarding their suitability for the festival.
3.Films on any topic will be considered, but special consideration will be given to films that match the festival theme (as described above).
4.Entries in any language other than either English or Chinese should be subtitled in one of those two languages.
5.The festival is open to films/videos made in all formats.
6.We do not accept open submission of films longer than 120 minutes, but will occasionally make exceptions by special arrangement.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR SUBMITTING FILMS
1.All entries must be submitted via our FilmFreeway account at: https://filmfreeway.com/festival/TIEFF
TIEFF does not require entries fees to submit to the festival.
2.All entrants should complete the FilmFreeway submission form presented during the submission process.
3.All screeners should be submitted online through FilmFreeway. They can either be uploaded directly to your FilmFreeway account or linked to files hosted on Vimeo or YouTube.
4.If the screener is password protected, be sure to provide a password that is valid for at least six months from the date of submission, or until the selection process is completed (whichever comes first). It is your responsibility to notify us if any changes are made.
5.If there is a reason you are unable to submit your film via FilmFreeway which cannot be solved by their technical support, feel free to contact us via email <firstname.lastname@example.org> for further assistance.
RULES AND TERMS
1.TIEFF does not pay screening fees. By submitting your film via FilmFreeway you acknowledge that the festival will not pay to present your work.
2.Once a film is selected, the holder of its copyrights automatically authorizes TIEFF to promote the production on public television and on the internet in short trailers up to 4 minutes in length.
3.If your film is selected, you must provide a press kit, including production stills that the festival can use in its promotional materials, publications and on social media.
4.A copy of all films selected for the festival will be preserved in TIEFF office. (For internal, non-public, academic use only.)
5.All films are required to have English subtitles for non-English dialogue. We ask Chinese speaking directors to provide both Chinese and English subtitles for their films. TIEFF will provide Chinese subtitles for films by non-Chinese speaking directors.
6.In order to produce the subtitled version of the film for screening, we require that we receive high quality tapes (such as BETACAM SP NTSC) or digital masters that we can use to make the subtitled version of the film for screening. As this technology is constantly changing, we will discuss this with directors after their films have been selected.
7.The festival reserves the right to make any necessary changes to these rules and regulations at any time and without notice.