The Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF) is currently accepting applications for African films (including the African Diaspora) and films from the Dhow Countries region (South East Asia, the Arabian Peninsula, The Persian Gulf, Iran, Pakistan, India and the Indian Ocean Islands) and from all countries of the world. Films must be have been produced after 2020. East African TV Series in Kiswahili, produced by after 2020, are invited for competition.

Every year, ZIFF screens approximately 70 domestic and foreign productions and hosts a dozen complementary activities such as workshops, masterclasses, debates and roundtables, network events, panoramas and outreach screenings. The festival typically welcomes about hundreds of guests from outside Zanzibar and presents 20 awards selected by juries of industry professionals.

Films reflecting the theme of global cultural interaction, cultural encounters or sociocultural commentary will be given priority. Films must have been completed by between 2020 and no later than February 15, 2022. We will accept submissions of works in progress only after agreement with the ZIFF management. The Submission Deadline is 28 February 2022. The festival reserves the right to invite selected films for screening at ZIFF.

Several awards with prizes in cash and/or services are presented by juries of local and international industry professionals.

• GOLDEN DHOW for Best Film in the Festival (from Dhow Countries)
• SILVER DHOW for Best Documentary
• SILVER DHOW for Best East African Short Film
• SILVER DHOW for The Best Bongo Movie in Competition
• SILVER DHOW for BEST Tv SERIES (Swahili language Series from East Africa)
• SEMBENE TROPHY for the Best Short film by an African Filmmaker (3 Awards)
• BEST AFRICAN SHORT FILM Award (from the European Film Festivals Group)
• BEST SCRIPT AWARD (for the Best Student film in the Students Film Section)
• BEST STUDENT FILM Award (in the Students Film Competition Section)
• THE EMERSON’S ZANZIBAR Award (for the Best Zanzibar film)

• Films entered can be of any theme or genre; fiction, documentary, animation or experimental, and shot in any format.
• Short and Animations (under 30 min)
• Feature-length (over 60 min)
• Documentary (shorts and feature length)
• Tv Series (30min or 45min maximum) (submit 2 consecutive episodes only)
• Student Shorts (Short Films by Film Students)
• Works must have been produced after January 2020.
• Works must be subtitled in English (if the original language is not English).
• Incomplete submissions will not be considered.