Now in its fifteenth year, the festival has grown to become one of the UK’s hottest events on the independent film scene with a glittering awards ceremony at the end of the festival and then an after party to mix with the other film makers.

Distributors, Sales Agents, Press and Film Financiers are all invited to the screenings and we have a high success rate of films securing UK distribution each year.

With a number of awards, including Best Feature, Best Short, Best Cinematography, Best Actress and Best Actor the event supports those involved both in front and behind the camera.

We accept films of all genres, both feature length and short, including music videos and documentaries. We screen films from all around the globe and focus on quality over budget when deciding our Official Selection.

Red carpet, amazing cinema, incredible after party, awards and distribution offers. What are you waiting for? Submit your masterpiece today.

Best Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Student Film
Best Music Video
Best Director
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
The British Lion Award (Best achievement on a low budget)
The Rising Star Award
The Milsome Award for Cinematography
Legend of Cinema Award
Best Screenplay
Best Screenplay Runner Up x 4

British Independent Film Festival

Rules for Participation

1. Dates and Venue

Please refer to the individual film festival dates as dictated on FilmFreeway. The venue for the 2024 British Independent Film Festival is The British Museum, London.

2. Contact Assurance
You are responsible for updating us directly regarding any change to your contact information and ensuring that emails from communications(at) are not blocked by spam filters.

3. Categories
Feature Film

Short Film

Student Film
Music Video

Unproduced Screenplay

*Please note that if we do not receive enough acceptable submissions for each category, we will merge them e.g. Student Film will be merged into the Short Film or Feature Film category*

4. Awards
Best Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Student Film
Best Music Video
Best Director
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
The British Lion Award (Best achievement on a low budget)
The Rising Star Award
The Milsome Award for Cinematography
Legend of Cinema Award
Best Screenplay
Best Screenplay Runner Up x 4

5. Film Competition
Film entries are open for both UK based and international filmmakers. 
Each title must be submitted separately, this includes individual episodes of a TV series. The festival organisers reserve the right to place entries into alternate categories if they feel it is to the benefit of the title. Film entries will be assessed and successful submissions will enter the festival competition i.e. the “Official Selection” and be programmed for screening. If your film is chosen for the Official Selection we reserve the right to screen your film at a date and time of our choosing. Failure to submit a locked screener copy through FilmFreeway days prior to the festival’s Notification Date will rule out eligibility for an award and may lead to the cancellation of your screening even if your film is chosen for the Official Selection.

6. Screenplay Competition
Screenplay entries are open for both UK based and international writers. 

Each title must be submitted separately. Screenplay entries will be assessed and successful submissions will enter the festival competition i.e. the “Official Selection”. Failure to submit a .pdf of the final draft of your script through FilmFreeway days prior to the festival’s Notification Date will rule out eligibility for an award even if your screenplay is chosen for the Official Selection.

7. Subtitles

Any foreign language films must have English subtitles for both the submission screener and exhibition screener. All screenplays must be in English.

8. Completion Date & Premiere Status
Films of any completion date are eligible for submission and we do not require a UK premiere.

9. Formats

We accept films with any aspect ratio. For the film selection process a digital screener must be submitted via FilmFreeway. For our judges' protection, this screener must be hosted with either Vimeo or Youtube. We will not assess films submitted with other private video hosting formats such as Google Drive etc. Successful submissions that are granted a screening MUST submit a Digital Cinema Package (DCP) to be screened at the event.

Screenplays must be submitted as a digital .PDF via FilmFreeway with a title page including the name of the Author and the title of the piece. Contact information may be included on this title page if desired, though these details will not affect the outcome of your submission.

10. Notification of Acceptance or Rejection
Notifications are made on the Notification Date listed on FilmFreeway this date is subject to extenuating circumstances and will be updated on the event listing if necessary.

11. Submission Feedback
Due to the volume of entries received we cannot offer individual feedback on all submissions.

12. Entry Fees
Only completed entries with paid submission fees will be processed and considered for the Official Selection. Entry fees are not refundable. Should the 2022 British Independent Film Festival be canceled or postponed due to a natural disaster, epidemic, or for any other reason beyond our control, submission fees cannot be refunded.

13. Entry Returns

DCPs on hard drives supplied with self-addressed and pre-stamped envelopes will be returned via post. Any DCPs remaining with the Film Festival Guild 6 weeks after the event will be destroyed.

14. Shipping Costs
All shipping and postage costs for all DCPs and additional materials sent to and returned from the British Independent Film Festival must be covered by the submitting party. The festival will not accept cash-on-delivery shipments and will not absorb any fees incurred in British customs. All charges must be prepaid.

15. Selection & Awards

This festival is organised by the Film Festival Guild. The festival Directors reserve the right to invite films for the competition and programme. The screening schedule will be announced after the festival’s Notification Date.

Award winning films from the Official Selection will be chosen by a panel of festival judges. Award winners will be notified within 7 days following the event date.

18. Publicity

We reserve the right to use extracts from submissions in the Official Selection for festival publicity and marketing purposes.

16. Screenings

It is the responsibility of the entrant to ensure that films for screening are deposited with the festival organisers at least 7 days before any scheduled screening. Failure to do so may lead to cancellation of your screening. We do not offer screening fees.

17. COVID-19
Due to the unprecedented and ongoing problems presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, we reserve the right to change the festival to a virtual online festival if it is not possible or unsafe to host the event in a physical venue.


The festival Administrators' decision is final in all the above matters.



By submitting to the British Independent Film Festival I confirm that I have read and accept the terms and regulations of the Film Festival Guild. I will provide the festival with any additional information required pursuant to these rules and regulations. I authorise the Film Festival Guild to exhibit my film, and if selected, I confirm that an exhibition copy will be available in a required format for screening during the 2024 festival. I certify that I hold all necessary rights for the submission of this film/video to the Film Festival Guild and that all rights and clearances have been made. This film is not subject to any litigation nor is threatened by any litigation. I hold the Film Festival Guild harmless from damage to, or loss of any or all materials en route to, from or otherwise at the festival. I assume all legal responsibilities therein. By Agreeing to these terms, I transfer to the Film Festival Guild the right to use excerpts of the submitted film, its stills, and trailers, for the purposes of publicity and marketing of the film at the 2024 festival, and for other non-commercial uses related to the promotion of the 2024 festival. I hereby agree to indemnify the Film Festival Guild, in the event that such rights have not been properly transferred.


General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

By submitting to our festival, we will utilise any personal data that you submit to us as part of the details of your submission to evaluate your submission for the purposes of the festival. We will store your data to contact you about future festivals and events that you may be interested in from either ourselves or third parties.
 We will also use your data as part of our internal surveys to assess the number of submissions for the festival and where submissions came from and from what category.
 You are in control of your data and should you wish to delete your data, you may request for us to do this at any time.
 Asking us to delete your data before the end of the festival will withdraw your submission from the festival and no refunds will be given. To withdraw consent to use your data and delete it from our systems, please email us with your request.

Data Consent

The only way to enter our film festival is by submission. It is not possible to enter the festival without a submission. Therefore by submitting to our festival you are giving us consent to utilise your data. 
It is impossible for our festival to manage your submission and your involvement in our festival without using your data. If you do not consent to this and would like us to delete your data entirely after the festival, please contact us. By making a submission to our festival you are giving your consent for us to use your data in the ways listed in point 15 of our rules and conditions. By making a submission to our festival you are allowing us to use your data and agreeing to abide by our festival rules, terms and conditions. Third Parties that we may share your data with are other film festivals, competitions and/or film festival submission websites.

Freedom Of Information

Under the Freedom of Information Act all client information kept by us is available to claim. This can include personal data, any saved emails, course attendance or mail. A request must be filed by the person in question in an email. This must include the full name and address and any details of what kinds of information would be kept (eg: if there are emails – and to who they would have been addressed) so as to assist full investigation of the claim. We will also charge a £10 administrative fee payable by PayPal. Any further claims will subsequently be charged £10 at every instance. In the cases where data contain private information concerning other clients or staff, such instances exempt from FOI claims, we may refuse to deliver such data alternatively explaining why this would not be available. If you are dissatisfied with our response comments must be sent to:
Information Commissioner, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF

Overall Rating
  • I really enjoyed being a part of this festival. The location was fantastic and all the films were brilliant. It'd be great to have more communication before and after the event, if I were to offer any feedback. But overall - great event, and I'd recommend entering.

    June 2023
  • Teni Ayankoya

    I'm very pleased to win a award in this festival, everything was smooth and organised from the host to the venue! :)

    May 2023
  • Sam Baron

    We loved being part of BIFF 2022 with our short film BIG EARS, which picked up the Best Actor award at the festival, plus nominations for Best Short Film, Best Supporting Actress and Best Supporting Actor. Thanks BIFF for the support!

    June 2022
  • James Langley

    This was our first festival so we might be slightly biased but it was well managed, we felt we were communicated with regularly, with any questions answered speedily. The quality do films at the festival were outstanding and we feel very lucky to have been shown along side some amazing talent. The cost was minimal and we love the fact that the Festival not only champions Indipendant filmmakers but Indipendant cinemas as well, shows they respect their namesake. As for networking, I hope that we keep in touch with everyone we met, at the after-party, people were all exceptionally nice and excited to talk about what they love. And just to confirm the after-party was indeed legendary. Thank-you Jessica for organising such a great event, and Stuart for some great hosting, we will definitely be coming again!

    June 2022
  • Serena Chloe Gardner

    Great communication and good festival :) would recommend

    July 2021