The 11th Underground Cinema Film Festival is an IFTA(Irish Film & Television Academy) Affiliated International Film Festival located in Dublin in Ireland.

A champion of emerging filmmakers, Underground Cinema has the belief that no matter what the film’s budget or the director’s vision it’s the filmmakers passion that drives a film.

As technology allows greater access to short films as well as filmmaking tools, an increasing number of people are turning to short filmmaking as a form of expression and an opportunity to explore creative freedom. The fact that we received 300 more submissions in this category than last year speaks to that. Within them we saw a wave of truly original and outrageously distinctive films united by their uncompromised spirit. This year we will present a new generation of adventurous independent filmmaking, in which boundaries are explored, pushed and often broken. The creative means employed in these films will take audiences on a wild ride towards the future of cinematic storytelling.

Our festival supported by Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council takes place in the magnificent Royal Marine Hotel, Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin in Ireland from September 4th to the 6th. Over the three days of the festival we will screen over 100 independently produced films from all over the world and we will once again host a number of free filmmakers workshops from industry experts.

We look forward to welcoming everyone to what promises to be our best festival yet.

Dave Byrne
Festival Director

Best Independent Feature Film
Best Independent Short Film
Best Student Short Film
Best International Student Short Film
Best International Short Film
Best Documentary
Best One Minute Short Film

1. The UCFF is open to Republic of Ireland and International filmmakers in the following categories:

Best Independent Feature Film – Feature with a budget less then €200K
Best International Feature Film – Feature film regardless of budget
Best Independent Short Film – Short film under 25 minutes that has not received funding
Best International Short Film – Short film made outside of Ireland under 25 mins that may or may not of had funding
Best Student Film – Short/Feature film completed by full time students in the Republic of Ireland
Best International Student Film – Short/Feature film completed by full time students
Best One Minute Short Film - Your short film has to be under 60 seconds. This category is an international category
Best Documentary - This can either be a short or feature length documentary
Best Animated Short Film - Short animated films under 25 minutes that has not received funding

2. We will accept entries via Vimeo download on the application form below. We will also accept We Transfer or Dropbox files. Please email if you intend to send your files via either of the two options above.

3. All entries must include the following:

A completed entry form
€25 entry fee for feature films
€18 entry fee for short films
€6 entry fee for one minute shorts

Underground Cinema will not consider your film until your submission fee is paid in full

4. Entry fees are non refundable

5. Films which have been broadcast on Television, Cable or have an international theatrical release prior to the UCFF are NOT eligible to enter competitively but may be screened out of competition.

6. For films submitted under the student category, a letter confirming your placement in college/school must be submitted prior to the film festival by email to the following address,
9. Non English language produced films must have English subtitles or be dubbed in English.

10. Winners agree to participate in the publicity for the Festival as well as other promotional events, including the Underground Cinema website.

11. Closing date of for submissions July 26th. Selected film entries will be notified by August 11th. Winners will be announced on the Closing Night of the Festival.

Overall Rating
  • Dean Cooper

    This was the first film and first selection in a festival. I was so pleased to have a film screened, unfortunately I was unable attend. The communication was very good, and I would recommend entering this festival. I am busy making my second documentary and looking forward to submitting it and hopefully attending next time.

    May 2020
  • Emmet Kelly

    Great film festival. Amazing films. Great communication and just a fantastic place to network meet like minded film makers and actors.

    December 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thanks for the kind words Emmet. We look forward to seeing you again at some stage in 2020.

  • Perica Antov

    Although I wasn't there It was a very good Communication.
    And they screened my film.

    Thanks !!!!

    September 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much Perica. Im glad you found that the communication was OK. We look forward to seeing what you have been working on for 2020.

  • Michele Noble

    I could not attend the Festival but their communication was excellent and I was honored my film, Reclamation: The Rise at Standing Rock was in such great company.

    September 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much for the kind words Michele. Your film went down really well. We wish you the very best of luck on your festival journey

  • Nigel Mulligan

    Absolutely loved this festival. Very personal correspondence with organisers. It is hosted in a beautiful part of Dublin.

    September 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thanks for the kind words Nigel. We look forward to seeing you again soon