Welcome to the 10th Underground Cinema Film Festival

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 August 30th to September 1st. 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 info@ucff.ie 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
$20 entry fee for short films

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, info@ucff.ie
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 28thth. Selected film entries will be notified by August 11th. Winners will be announced on the Closing Night of the Festival.

Overall Rating
  • Dublin Filmmakers

    Thoroughly enjoyed the three days of this festival, which is a true supporter of independent cinema.

    September 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much guys. We're glad you enjoyed the festival

  • Micheal Fitzgerald

    The best and most accessible platform for new film makers in Ireland

    September 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you very much Micheál. We were delighted to screen your work at the festival this year and we’re looking forward to seeing what you have up your sleeve for 2019

  • Paireac Keane

    Unfortunately couldn't make this year's festival but we heard great things about it. Communication was good; the festival seemed well organised, and the organisers seem very passionate about independent filmmaking. Will definitely be submitting future film projects to the festival.

    September 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Paireac. Your film A Timely Gift went down really well at the festival. Beautifully shot, wonderfully written and directed with fabulous performances from all your cast. Ticked all the boxes for us. Well done

  • Conor Healy

    Really nice festival run by really nice and passionate people. Had a great time there and can't wait to go again.

    September 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thanks for the kind words Conor. I’m glad your enjoyed the festival. We look forward to seeing more work from you in the coming year

  • Axel Steinmüller

    The communication with the organizers was a bit odd. After we have been informed, that our film was selected (yeah!!!) , we happily wrote an email to them, asking what they need etc. The mail never got answered! After more than a week later we tried it again also asking if they prefer an upload of high rez or if we should send DCP and blue ray. This time, they came back to us, but kind of short-spoken, telling us, that they will use the online-screener...no other additional information.
    We wrote them again, and again never got an answer. After that, we felt a bit irritated since we are not used to such communication. So, before spending money for airfares from Munich to Dublin (kind of expensive in that period), we decided not to go....
    Therefor we cannot say anything about the festival itself....

    October 2017