The FERRARA FILM FESTIVAL is one of the fastest growing film festival in the World and the fastest growing in Italy, hosted in the northern Italian City of Ferrara, a UNESCO World Heritage site that serves as an incredible backdrop for this high profile cinematic event. The Ferrara Film Festival is an "IMDB Qualifier Festival".

The Ferrara Film Festival, in just 6 editions, had big movie premieres in its competition with some of the major Italian and international movie stars. It's a global film competition that sees at least 10.000 people attending each edition, culminating with the Golden Dragon Awards Ceremony. The event includes movie themed collateral events, entertainment shows and partnerships with many world class Institutions.

At the Ferrara Film Festival all the selected films will be divided in specific categories by our Organization. Our categories reflects the Global nature and relevance of our festival. WHAT DOES IT MEAN? When you submit your film, all you have to do is to choose between “Feature Film”, “Short Film” and “Documentary” then, IF YOUR FILM IS SELECTED, we'll independently put your it in the more specific category.

Here below the detailed categories of FERRARA FILM FESTIVAL:

"Premiere Event"
"Premiere Autore"
"Premiere Docu"
"Premiere Unicef"
"Premiere Emilia-Romagna"

"Short Event"
"Short Autore"

The FERRARA FILM FESTIVAL is founded by producer, director and international show-business entrepreneur Maximilian Law, spearheading a team of about 100 people.

Explore our festival on

The awards of the Ferrara Film Festival are called GOLDEN DRAGONS, which recall the legend and mythological figure of the Dragon killed by St. George (the Patron Saint of Ferrara).

For each edition of the Ferrara Film Festival 7 judges will be assigned to choose the award winners in all categories.

NOTE: Special Career Achievement Awards will be dedicated and given to prestigious personalities in the Film Industry.

The “Golden Dragon” awards will be assigned in the following categories:

• Best Premiere Event
• Best Premiere Autore
• Best Premiere Docu
• Best Premiere Unicef
• Best Premiere Emilia-Romagna
• Best Director in a Feature Film
• Best Lead Actor in a Feature Film
• Best Lead Actress in a Feature Film

• Best Short Film Event
• Best Short Film Autore
• Best Director in a Short Film
• Best Lead Actor in a Short Film
• Best Lead Actress in a Short Film

Further info on

Feature Films (minimum runtime 60 minutes)
Short Films (maximum runtime 30 minutes)
• The Ferrara Film Festival does NOT pay any fees to screen any movies in our program. If you submit your film to us, you agree to this term.
• Films can premiere in some major film festival prior to Ferrara Film Festival (see exceptions below), but must not have a public distribution (theatrical, streaming, online) prior to the current edition.
• Movies must have the exclusivity in Emilia-Romagna. Meaning they cannot premiere in any other film festival in the Emilia-Romagna region. ​
• Each film can be any genre and from anywhere in the World.
• Films are accepted if they are completed not earlier than the year before the current edition. For example, in the 2022 edition, movies must be produced in 2021.

Overall Rating
  • Shawn Harris

    Ferrara Film Festival excels in every way possible. A professionally run and friendly festival, takes place in a beautiful Italian town with helpful people and wonderful food. We had the time of our life attending this gem!

    June 2021
  • Fantastic festival! A truly incredible experience from start to finish, honored and grateful to receive the Golden Dragon award for Best Director in a Short Film 2021 (‘7PM’). The city of Ferrara is stunning, we’ve met incredibly talented filmmakers and forged new and special friendships. The festival staff are truly passionate about cinema and supportive towards independent filmmakers. A truly memorable experience and we would like to thank the great staff of Ferrara Film Festival and congratulate them for being the first film festival in Italy to return to a live theatrical experience following the challenging year and the global pandemic. Grazie Ferrara!
    L’amore vince, sempre!

    June 2021
  • Irwin Suba

    Honored to win the Golden Dragon at The Ferrara Film festival, the festival was incredibly organized, the town is beautiful, great communication and it was an overall great experience with this festival.

    October 2020
  • Stefano Petroni

    The festival was very well organized. The screening room was an actual cinema. I came from far and it was absolutely worth it to attend.

    October 2020
  • Danny Fisher

    Terrific festival! Very much appreciated the continual communication. “Inside the Rain” won Best Actor for writer-director-actor Aaron Fisher and we are most grateful.

    October 2020