The Windsor International Film Festival (hereafter WIFF) has been named the largest volunteer-run film festival in Canada by TIFF Film Circuit partners, selling over 45,000 tickets in 2022. The upcoming festival is scheduled for 11 days (October 26–November 5, 2023), intends to present more than 300 screenings, and will offer audiences 4 screening venues throughout downtown Windsor.
- WIFF is proud to partner with HotDocs to showcase some of the best documentaries during the festival with the HotDocs Showcase.
- WIFF has the largest slate of Francophone Films screened out of any other film festival in all of Canada, including Quebec.
- WIFF is proud to highlight important films by and about women with their Women of WIFF dedicated programming.
- WIFF highlights an impressive roster of LGBTQ2+ films from a wide range of titles that span the world.
- WIFF dedicates other highlighted programming slates to the Celebration of Music, Spotlight on Architecture, WIFF Local, Midnight Madness, and Special Anniversary Screenings.
To kick-off the festival, WIFF is planning a 4-day (October 26-29, 2023) grand opening weekend comprising an extensive film schedule, a special opening night film, a spectacular opening night reception, celebrity guest appearances, national and international media coverage, and the impressive WIFF Prize in Canadian Film.
WIFF is proud to ensure our selected films/distributors receive an agreed-upon, industry-standard, percentage stake of their box office sales.
WIFF PRIZE IN CANADIAN FILM - $25,000 CAD
Is a juried competition that aims to celebrate and support Canadian filmmakers and films and the winner of the competition will receive $25,000 CAD and a custom Canadian-inspired trophy. WIFF will launch the competition in the Summer of 2023. WIFF Programming committee will meet to select up to 10 nominated feature films and filmmakers this coming fall. Finalists will be announced on September 14, 2023, during WIFF’s official film festival media announcement in Toronto. During the Toronto International Film Festival (hereafter TIFF), WIFF Executive Director & Chief Programmer, Vincent Georgie and members of WIFF’s Board of Directors will host a black-tie, star-studded, and catered gala atop the TIFF Bell Lightbox building in downtown Toronto to officially kick off WIFF 2023 and the Canadian Film Prize.
All 10 nominated films will be screened during WIFF’s 4-day opening weekend alongside the festival’s regular film schedule. At least 1 on-screen and 1 off-screen talent from the nominated films are expected to be in attendance. They will participate in Q&As, media interviews, and social events throughout the weekend. A jury of industry professional and experts will judge the 10 nominated films and select a winner of the Prize in Canadian Film. The winner of the Canadian Film Prize will be announced on Sunday, October 29, 2023.
LiUNA! PEOPLE'S CHOICE AWARD
All films screened during the festival dates are entered to win the festival's most coveted prize, the Liuna! People's Choice Award. This award is chosen by the audiences through a rank and vote system to determine the most loved film at the festival by all audiences.
The winning film will be screened in a free community screening during the 2023 festival, date and time to be determined.
ELIGIBILITY CANADIAN FILM FEATURES: All submitted Canadian feature-length films will be considered for regular festival programming. Only 10 of these films will be nominated for consideration in the WIFF Prize in Canadian Film Award. Submissions may be fiction, documentary, animation, or experimental of 70 minutes or more. Only films completed no more than 18 months prior to WIFF 2023 will be considered for admission. Films must be original works and must not have been previously submitted to WIFF. The film must not have had a theatrical release, aired on television, or been available on a public streaming platform in North America. The production must qualify as Canadian (defined as any production which would qualify as a certified production under current regulations applied by CRTC. International co-productions are eligible only if the director is Canadian). The entrant warrants that all necessary rights and clearances to the material contained in their production have been secured. All applicable licenses and waivers of copyrights, moral rights, trademarks, and other such intellectual property rights have been secured by the filmmaker(s).
ELIGIBILITY NON-CANADIAN FILM FEATURES: All submitted feature-length films will be considered for regular festival programming. Submissions may be fiction, documentary, animation, or experimental of 70 minutes or more. Only films completed no more than 18 months prior to WIFF 2023 will be considered for admission. Films must be original works and must not have been previously submitted to WIFF. The film must not have had a theatrical release, aired on television, or been available on a public streaming platform in North America. The entrant warrants that all necessary rights and clearances to the material contained in their production have been secured. All applicable licenses and waivers of copyrights, moral rights, trademarks, and other such intellectual property rights have been secured by the filmmaker(s).
ENTRY FORMAT: Films with commentary or dialogue in languages other than English must be subtitled in English for consideration. Preview copies of entries must be submitted on filmfreeway.com with a password protected/or private Vimeo or YouTube link that is available until the notification date of September 15.
PRESENTATION FORMAT: If selected for official programming.
- While not yet mandatory, the inclusion of Closed Captioning is preferred and will become mandatory in future years.
- Digital submission via Dropbox, WeTransfer, Google Drive, Cinesend, etc.
- No physical media will be accepted.
- Professionally authored DCPs are accepted, but digital file submission is preferred
- Resolutions Accepted: 1920x1080; 1998x1080; 2048x858
- Formats Accepted: ProRes; .mov; High-quality H.264 MP4;
- 50 minimum bitrate, 2 Pass if possible
- Stereo audio is perfectly acceptable
- 5.1 splits preferred if available
- 5.1 Audio layout:
- 1 - Left (Front)
- 2 - Right (Front)
- 3 - Centre (Front)
- 4 - LFE
- 5 - Left Surround (Rear)
- 6 - Right Surround (Rear)
PROGRAM SELECTION: All entries are viewed and chosen by a Selection Committee appointed by the Chief Programmer. Final selections are at the sole discretion of an external jury panel consisting of industry professionals and experts.
NOTIFICATION: Nominees for the Prize in Canadian Film will be notified of the decisions of the Selection Committee by September 15, 2023. All other Canadian feature-film and non-Canadian feature film applicants that are selected for regular festival programming will have a notification date of October 5, 2023. Applicants will be notified via email to the FilmFreeway contact. Due to time constraints, the Selection Committee will not be able to respond individually to filmmakers if your film is not accepted. WIFF's Programming Committee and Selection Committees review all film submissions. Decisions made by WIFF are final. The date(s), time(s) and location(s) of exhibitions of the films shall be at the discretion of the Festival. No film, once programmed, can be withdrawn. Each official selection will be required to provide a press kit and materials upon acceptance.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS: Upon selection, the entrant grants WIFF the right to utilize publicity materials related to the production (i.e. press kits, posters, stills, preview tapes, etc.) for promotional purposes in all mediums, including broadcast, print and internet. All publicity materials for invited films (press kits, stills, posters, video clips) must arrive at the Festival at the sender's expense. 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 WIFF 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) that 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 film has been submitted for consideration with the knowledge and consent of the Producer(s) and/or rights holders listed in this form. If selected as a nominee for the Canadian Film Prize, there is an understanding of an expectation that the selected film sends delegates (one off-screen and one on-screen) to accompany the nominated film during the Opening Weekend (October 26 - October 29; lodging and per diem honorarium incl.). Participation in WIFF implies an understanding and acceptance of these regulations. The Festival reserves the right to rule on cases not foreseen by these regulations.