Our Mission

We acclaim emerging directors, screenwriters and filmmakers from all over the world and amplify their work by bringing together a diverse audience to experience and reflect on it, and engage in further dialogue.

Our community exists at the intersection of a broader, more inclusive, cinematic gaze and the emergence of truly exceptional cinema.

If films are the content, Alfama is the form that sets the tone for the experiences we create. An architectural somatisation of intimacy, this is the scene in which we invite your films to make their appearance.

Our Story
in 2009 as an informal project to showcase independent cinema in the recondite alleys of Alfama, projected against its iconic stone walls.

​In the following years, Cinalfama matured and became a competitive event of an international character, as well as a cultural reference in Lisbon.

The nature of the events has changed over the years, but the atmosphere, films and venues remain as intimate as they have always been.

Our Home
Founded in 1914, Grupo Sportivo Adicense is one of the oldest and most authentic remaining symbols of Alfama’s true soul.

World famous fado singers started their careers waiting tables at this historical institution – one that still stands in the face of constant change and mischaracterisation of the neighbourhood’s urban landscape.

Competition & Awards
Up-and-coming directors, screenwriters and filmmakers from all over the world submit their work ahead of each of our seasonal screening and awards editions, at which we present our jury’s final selection.

Best Medium or Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Debut Film
Best Director
Best Actor/ Actress
Best Screenplay

We invite the winning directors, screenwriters and music supervisors or composers to present their work in the heart of Lisbon's old town, Alfama.

The selected, nominated and awarded films promotional material is shared on our website and on our social media platforms.

All winners will receive a laurel and a certificate.

Winning films will be promoted at our partner festivals.

Access to ECU Paris International Festival. Winners will have a privileged selection viewing at ÉCU. Several Cinalfama awarded films were selected and awarded at ÉCU as well.

The winners will have the opportunity to have a one to one mentor session with members of our renowned jury, Leonor Teles and Pedro Cabeleira.

The submitter hereby certifies that he possesses the right(s) and all of the proper clearances to submit the film, including, but not limited to image rights, talent releases, soundtrack and/or source music releases; and assumes all responsibility for their material. Cinalfama Lisbon Screening and Awards accepts no responsibility, financial or otherwise, for any film submitted to the festival.

Every entry/submission will be judged based on its directing, acting, technical, and artistic merits, as related to the submission. All decisions made by the judge(s) are considered final and incontestable.

We reserve the right not to give all of the possible awards if we don’t receive enough entries in a particular category or if none of the submissions meet our high judging standards.

There can be, if the jury by its own quality so decides, two winners ex aequo in any of the categories.

The official selection is composed of 5 nominees, 1 winning film per category, as well as honourable mention recipients.

The Cinalfama Awards only accept online screeners. Please submit your film via FilmFreeway. We do not accept discs or any downloadable files. ​

​Entry fees are nonrefundable.

Multiple entries are allowed. You can submit more than one film to the same category.

Any entry will be considered eligible in the next edition only if the film was not awarded in previous editions.

Submissions in languages other than English must be subtitled in English. English subtitles must be embedded in the film. No additional srt files will be accepted.

Only films released after 2015 are accepted.

Short films are considered to be up to 30 minutes and medium or feature films to be 30 minutes or more.

Cinalfama reserves the right to disqualify any film whose submitter might be in any way linked to illicit or criminal acts, proven or otherwise.

Selected, nominated and awarded films’ promotional material will be announced and viewable on our website (http://www.cinalfama.com) and on our social media pages.

The awarded films rightful owners of the rights, in each category of every edition, hereby authorise the film’s live screening at Cinalfama events, and use of relevant content on our social media platforms. This authorisation is an indispensable condition for the inclusion in the festival’s official selection.

Critical Feedback Report + Mentoring Session
Request a critical report and book a one to one mentoring video session with a member of Cinalfama’s jury of experienced and award-winning film professionals, for an in-depth analysis and creative review of your film. Our team will get back to you within 5 days after your submission to schedule the session.

Critical Feedback Report
You can also choose to receive full private written critical feedback on your work - just submit in the “Critical Feedback Report” Category.

Overall Rating
  • Ishmael Annobil

    I love this festival for the intelligence and personal touch. It is very career affirming to have been recognised by this beautiful platform. Memorable.

    August 2021
  • Davide Marino

    Lovely selection, amazing quality and outstanding communication. I am sure this festival will become one of the best in Portugal and surely a reference in Lisbon. Thanks so much for appreciating my film and being so kind with me.

    February 2021
    Response from festival:

    Thank you! Great work Davide. We are very proud to have your film selected. Looking forward to the next one. See you soon!

  • Nico Weber

    It was a very nice experience and a very nice contact. Our film INSIDE PRORA was nominated in the category best long documentary. Unfortunately we did not win. The flood of films that hit the festival in Corona times increased the pressure of competition even more. All the nicer that we also received an explanation from João about the circumstances and such nice encouragement and praise from the festival team. Thank you. That is motivating.

    February 2021
    Response from festival:

    Inside Prora is excellent Nico and it is highly regarded at Cinalfama. We surely want to follow your career. Thank you!

  • Maxime Demartin

    It was a blast to learn that our film "Fight Lie a Girl" was nominated for best Debut Film. Looking forward to further editions that will hopefully happen IRL.

    February 2021
    Response from festival:

    It's a super encouraging first film. An excellent rock to build on. Bravo! Good luck and see you soon!

  • Filippo Giani

    Smooth communication, honoured to have been selected for this.
    Big thanks to João, will be looking forward to submitting again.

    February 2021
    Response from festival:

    We will be waiting for your next work Filippo! Thank you very much.