Since its foundation in 1977, the Duisburger Filmwoche has been the place for debates on documentary films, their artistic approach and social environment. Every year in November, outstanding documentary films from Germany, Austria and Switzerland are shown at the filmforum cinema on Dellplatz. A broad quality of cinematic creation in a single programme track without parallel screenings and the reflection of the invited positions in the subsequent film discussions characterise the special format of the film week.

Cinema and discussion hall are the spaces in which the public sphere of the film week unfolds: The silent engagement with the films in the dark becomes an eloquent engagement with the others and their arguments in the light of the podium. Experiencing the relationship between the two places, the "Duisburg topography" (Werner Ružička), is what makes the film week special. It offers space for exchange and understanding: about what the documentary images show and about how they are made. The festival is thus characterised by something that is inherent to documentary film itself: reflective showing and informing, and thus an impulse to think further. The minutes of the film discussions are collected in the festival's own online archive Protokult and thus put past discussions into dialogue with each other and continue a piece of discourse history. As part of Duisburger Schule, the film week's offer for colleges and universities, the festival facilitates an intensive exchange between students and filmmakers.

Films with a length of 65 minutes or more
★ ARTE Documentary Film Award (6,000 euros)
★ 3sat Documentary Film Award (6,000 euros)

Films with a length of up to 65 minutes
★ Prize of the City of Duisburg (5,000 euros)

First or second film by up-and-coming authors
★ ‘Carte Blanche’ Young Talent Award of the State of NRW (5,000 euros)

All films in the programme
★ Audience Award of the Rheinische Post (1,000 euros)



The Duisburger Filmwoche is the festival of documentary film from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. However, you are cordially invited to understand the term documentary quite openly – border crossers of the genre are just as welcome to us as the ‘mixed forms’.

All formats can be submitted. However, we do impose restrictions on the length: Films should be at least 20 minutes long.

Unfortunately, productions that had their premiere or first broadcast before the 1st of September 2023 cannot be considered. Works that were already submitted in the previous year will not be considered for resubmission.

The filmmakers or producers must live in the Federal Republic of Germany, Austria or Switzerland or be nationals of these countries. During the film week, the filmmakers must be present and represent their film in a film discussion in Duisburg. As a rule, the film discussions will be held in German.

The selection of films will be made by a six-member commission consisting of filmmakers, journalists and film scholars together with the curator. The decision on the programme will be made in mid-September. We kindly ask you to include the full contact details of the filmmakers in the application form so that we can contact them as soon as possible after our decision.

Films that comply with these regulations should have arrived for screening by 30 July 2024 at the latest.