Note: Please Read our Covid-19 Message in our rules section, thank you.

The Waterford Film Festival is an independent International Film Festival and was established in 2007.

Several members of our team have a background in short film production and we all have a passion to celebrate short films from around the world,bringing filmmakers together.

It has always been our goal to promote and support established, debut and student filmmakers especially in the field of independent short films with our annual events and competitions.

The Waterford Film Festival also recognises and supports writers. Since 2008 the festival has held an annual screenplay competition. The Waterford Film Festival was the first festival held in Ireland to hold a short script competition.

The festival welcomes all forms of short films and filmmakers from different cultures and backgrounds. The Waterford Film Festival presents a wide range of genres including drama, thrillers, horrors, comedy,sci-fi,experimental, music and documentaries.

Our annual programme also includes films that engage with social, political and cultural issues.

Each year we produce a series of events that are creative, intriguing, fun and entertaining.

The Festival hugely encourages networking. Social meetups and events are held for the audience to meet other filmmakers over the Festival weekend.

Filmmakers from across Ireland, UK, France, Germany, Holland, Spain, Greece and as far as Canada and USA have attended the Festival. We always look forward to meeting and engaging with all filmmakers and our audience.

In 2021 the Festival is expanding our competitions by adding new categories and we are launching a brand new Photography Competition called the Principal Image Photography Competition.

The new competition is for aspiring, amateur and student photographers.

The Waterford Film Festival is the first film festival in Ireland to hold such a competition.

The festival strives to promote talent from all over the world and to bring a wide variety of projects for our audience of cinema lovers to enjoy.

2021 Festival Plans & 2022 New Venue Partnership

The 15th Waterford Film Festival is now open for submissions for films, scripts and for it’s brand new photography competition.

This year's festival is going ahead however Covid-19 is still very much part of our daily lives and it will be highly likely that some form of restrictions will be in place for most of the year.

This year it is difficult for venues to be in a position to run multiple events, back to back and on consecutive days, as a festival structure requires.

For these reasons and for the health and safety of everyone involved, all selected films will be presented on a virtual (password protected/subscriber based only) platform for the 2021 Festival. It is our aim to at least have a physical awards presentation following the festival weekend in The House of Waterford Crystal.

Waterford Film Festival & Odeon Cinemas Waterford

The Waterford Film Festival is delighted to announce our new venue partners ODEON CINEMAS. They will be hosting next year's festival in 2022 in their venue located in Poleberry Waterford. This will be the 1st time the festival will be hosted by a commercial cinema.

Festival Director Stephen Byrne states: ” This is exciting news for the festival and our supporters. By the time this event happens it will be over 2 years since we had physical screenings with a live audience. All of the festival team are looking forward to returning to a theatre setting and for the 1st time in a cinema. I am excited that we will be presenting a wide range of short films from different cultures and backgrounds from around the world to old and new audiences. It will be a brand new experience for all involved. This will be the start of a new chapter for the festival and we are excited and looking forward to working with the Odeon in producing our 2022 programme of events.”

For the 2021 Festival there is a brand new photography competition called Principal Image Photography Competition

One of the prizes include exhibit space provided by Odeon Cinemas and a revamp of our existing film & screenplay competitions.

The festival also plans to host a series of networking events during the festival weekend and if possible an awards presentation in the House of Waterford Crystal.

Filmmakers, writers and photographers can submit their projects on the festival website or at filmfreeway.com
A full list of prizes, rules and how to enter all 3 competition can be found at at www.waterfordfilmfestival.net or www.filmfreeway.com/waterfordfilmfestival

Below is a summary of the new photography competition.

Principal Image Photography Competition

The Principal Image Photography Competition is for aspiring,amateur & student photographers and videographers.

The competition's main goal is to support and encourage new and emerging talent in the areas of photography and art.

The Waterford Film Festival will provide a variety of platforms for photographers to promote their work and have it presented to a new audience.

This is a movie themed competition, using symbolism's in the art of filmmaking to create images that screams CINEMA.

Prizes include exhibit space in the Odeon Cinema Waterford during the 2022 Waterford Film Festival, a portfolio website and the winning image will be used for our 2022 Programme Booklet and Posters.

The Waterford Film Festival will give our finalists and winners visibility on our website and on social media pages.

Other prizes are listed in our awards section.

The competition is open to photographers and artists worldwide.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for images that represent film or filmmaking. This can be images from the following:
A project you are currently working on. ( Film related, a shot from your own film)
A completely once off original concept ( E.G. Create a once off image that could be shot of a film, or a movie poster)
A tribute/ homage/recreation of a well known movie/film production

Each Image entered should have a title and ideally your entry includes a tagline but it's not compulsory.

We are looking for creative, inspired shots that clearly define a moment in cinema.

These images can be set interior or exterior, with or without actors/models/prop/production shots.

The image must be cinematic or symbolic to film and cinema.

The image does not need to include any equipment. For example the image could be an action shot, a dramatic image between characters, a comedic moment or a setting in a cinema itself.

The artist can use programmes such as Illustrator or Photoshop to create their images. We will also consider artistic drawings or paintings as long as they have the ‘look’ of a film image. Images can include a tagline.

The Waterford Film Festival runs 3 annual competitions . They are in film, screenplays and photography.

Below are a list of the awards for each competitions

1.Short Film Competition

Best Short Film Award: Winners prizes include Waterford Crystal designed Award for
Best Short Film, a certificate, winners laurels and a cash prize.

Runner Up Award for Best Short Film: Prize includes Waterford Crystal designed Award, a certificate and runners up laurels.

Best Debut/Student Short Film: A Certificate, Laurels and a cash prize
Several Special Mention Awards will be presented with a certificate and Laurels.

All selected films will receive officially selected Laurels.The Waterford Film Festival aims to have an awards presentation in The House of Waterford Crystal by November 20th, 2021, depending on restrictions. Winners are encouraged to attend but its not compulsory.

Short Screenplay Competition

This competition will now have two rounds.

Round 1: Up to 50 screenplays will be selected as semi finalists and
writers will receive semi-finalist Laurels.

Round 2: A finalist list of up to 20 screenplays will be selected from the
semi-finalist list.

All Finalists will receive Finalist Laurels and Certificates.

The Overall Winner for Best Short Screenplay will be presented with a Waterford Crystal
designed Award, Laurels, a Certificate and a cash prize.

Runner up for Best Short Screenplay will receive a Certificate and Laurels.
Several Special Mention Awards will be presented with a certificate and Laurels

Note 1: Round 1: Semi Finalists will be notified several weeks before the offical notification date.

Note 2: In Round 2: Finalists will be notified on or before October 13th
The Waterford Film Festival aims to have an awards presentation in
The House of Waterford Crystalby November 20th, 2021, depending on restrictions. Winners are encouraged to attend but its not compulsory

OTHER PRIZES

The Waterford Film Festival has teamed up with InkTip.com and they are offering the prizes for our winners. Prizes for winners of the script and film competition from InkTip is a script listing . Winners will be able to promote their scripts and themselves to InkTip's large network of producers and reps.Every InkTip producer has been vetted via resume and references and demonstrated the ability to get movies made. Companies who are InkTip members include: ABC, Anonymous Content, APA, CBS Films, HBO Films, ICM, Paradigm, Paramount Pictures, Hallmark Channel, FX, Universal, WME, Echo Lake, Zero Gravity, Bad Robot, and 20th Century Fox. ​

Photography Competition
PLEASE GO TO THIS LINK TO READ MORE DETAILS ON THIS COMPETITION
https://www.waterfordfilmfestival.net/photography-competition
You can enter here or on our site.

Best Cinematic Image

The winner will have an exhibit of their work displayed in the Odeon Cinema Waterford during the 2022 Festival Weekend.

The winner can have up to six images displayed including the winning photo/image of this competition.

The winning photo/image will be displayed on the front cover of the Festival’s 2022 programme booklet,as well as all posters and promotional material and on our website and various online platforms

The winner will receive a free portfolio website of your work, which will be built on your behalf. This includes one free year of hosting with domain fees. Total value of the website prize €1,000 (not a cash prize)

The winner will receive a free pass to the Opening Night of the Waterford Film Festival 2022 which takes place in the Odeon Cinema, Waterford and they can also to speak at the event if they wish.

The winner will receive an Official ‘Winner’ Digital Certificate and Laurels.

Runner Up: Best Cinematic Image
The runner ups portfolio will be promoted (with up to five images) on our social media channels and website

The image will be used in a section of our printed programme booklet
Cash prize of €50

The runner up will receive a free pass to the Opening Night of the 2022 Waterford Film Festival which takes place in the Odeon Cinema in Waterford.

The runner up will receive an Official ‘Runner Up’ Digital Certificate and Laurels

The festival now runs 3 competitions. Film, Scripts & Photography. Each competition has a different set of rules.

Below our COVID- 19 MESSAGE ARE THE RULES OF ALL 3 COMPETITIONS

The Waterford Film Festival is usually a physical event, held in a venue in Waterford City. This year's Festival will still go ahead. However, since the outbreak of Covid-19, we have had no choice but to present our Festival on an online platform.

It was our hope to return to holding a live event to our much appreciated audience, but unfortunately for 2021 this will not be the case.

Covid-19 is still very much part of our daily lives and it will be highly likely that some form of restrictions will be in place for most of the year.

This year it is also difficult for venues to be in a position to run multiple events, back to back and on consecutive days, as a Festival structure requires.

For these reasons and for the health and safety of everyone involved, all selected films will be presented on a virtual (password protected/subscriber based only) platform for the 2021 Festival.

It is however our aim to at least have a physical awards presentation following the Festival weekend in The House of Waterford Crystal. More details on our 2021 competitions can be found below.

Each Project must be accompanied by an entry form and entry Fee.

Submitter can enter either on the FilmFreeway website or on the Waterford Film Festival website. There is a paypal option to pay the entry fee if submitting on our website.

SHORT FILM COMPETITION RULES

1. For the 2021 Festival, filmmakers must give the Waterford Film Festival permission to present their films on a temporary basis on a password protected /subscriber based video on demand platform for the duration of the Festival if their project is selected.

2.The Waterford Film Festival will accept entries of all film genres less than 20 minutes (Not including closing credits). Filmmakers worldwide can submit their work. Non-English language films must be dubbed in English or have English subtitles.

3. Films produced from January 2019 onward will be considered.

4. We do not web/new media. (For example marketing presentations). Please contact director@waterfordfilmfestival.net if you wish to have a paid video ad screened during the festival.

5. All entries will be viewed by the selection committee. The Festival will make no cuts or changes. Festival selections will be announced on or before 13th of October 2021. All entrants will be notified by email.

6. Selected films will be listed and posted on our website and various platforms. The festival does not pay rental fees for submitted work.

7. Please note that no fee waivers will be given to submitter. The Festival heavily relies on fees which go towards our operational costs.

8. COPYRIGHT: Filmmakers are responsible for securing all copyright clearances and music rights.

9.Due to the amount of entries and time restraints we can not provide feedback.

10. Please make sure to fully fill out your form and include a logline, short story summary and the main credits (Producer, Director, Writer) etc. If your short film is selected we will need this information for the event programmes, website etc.
Once a film is submitted for consideration it cannot be retracted.

11.We would prefer if there were no Geo-blocking restrictions for the selected films but we will try and accommodate, if possible.

12. By entering your film for consideration for the 2021 Waterford Film Festival, you authorize that your work is cleared for Festival exhibition and accept full legal responsibility for the intellectual property therein.

13.Entry into the festival constitutes permission to exhibit your work at the 2021 Waterford Film Festival including the presentation of films on a virtual format/ video on demand platform.

14.The Waterford Film Festival is also hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for exhibition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

15. Even though our online platform will have security, the festival can not 100% guarantee possible illegal downloads and the submitter shall indemnify and hold harmless The Waterford Film Festival and all of our sponsors/associates of such possible actions.

16. The application shall indemnify and hold harmless The Waterford Film Festival, employees and all of our sponsors/associates of said entities from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening and loss of or damage to the screening of films entered.

17. The Waterford Film Festival has the right to amend these rules at any time.

18. By submitting the online form below or on filmfreeway.com you are agreeing to these rules

19. The Waterford Film Festival aims to have an awards presentation in The House of Waterford Crystal by November 20th, 2021. Depending on Restrictions. Winners are encouraged to attend but its not compulsory.

SHORT SCRIPT COMPETITION RULES

1. By submitting the online form on our website or on filmfreeway.com you are agreeing to these rules
2.The Waterford Film Festival Short Screenplay Competition is open to people from any nationality and from any country.

3. Submission fees must be paid. Entries that do not include a fee will not be considered.

4. This competition will have 2 Rounds( please see awards section for info). Up to 50 semi-finalists will be selected and presented with Official Laurels. From these semi-finalists up to 20 finalists will be selected. Please see our awards section for a breakdown of prizes.

The overall winners will be selected from the finalists list and announced on the last day of the festival.
Round 1: Semi Finalists will be notified several weeks before the offical notification date.

In Round 2: Finalists will be notified on or before October 13th

5. Screenplays must be written in English.

6. The screenplay must not be less than three pages and not exceed fifteen pages. The cover is not included All genres will be considered.

7. Screenplays must be submitted on official platforms either on The Waterford Film Festival site or on FilmFreeway. Please do not email in scripts unless requested by a member of our team.

8. If your screenplay is selected to be a semi-finalist or finalists, you give the Festival permission to use your name and image in Festival promotions, press etc.

9. All submissions will be judged by the Waterford Film Festival Committees appointed by the Festival Director. Their reports and decisions are final and confidential.

10. Writers can submit as many screenplays as they wish but they must fill in a separate entry form and pay separate fees for each screenplay.

11. The Waterford Film Festival reserves the right to amend these rules at any time.

12. All entrants will be notified of the status of their submissions by email.

13. Writers retain all rights to their screenplay.

14. A production company can submit a script but must have the writer's approval. Writers can email their approval to the festival director at waterfordfilmfestival@gmail.com

15. The Waterford Film Festival will only consider un-produced scripts but the work can have a development deal/option in place.However scripts must not be in production at the time of entry or completed until post festival weekend.

16. The application shall indemnify and hold harmless. The Waterford Film Festival and employees of said entities against any and all claims which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark etc.

17. The Waterford Film Festival aims to have an awards presentation in The House of Waterford Crystal by November 20th, 2021. Depending on Restrictions.

18. Finalists and Winners are encouraged to attend but its not compulsory

Photography Competition Rules

1. Each image entry must be accompanied by an entry form and the entry fee. You can submit on www.filmfreeway.com/waterfordfilmfestival or at www.waterfordfilmfestival.net. Submission will not be considered without a fee and the completed form.

2.Applicants can submit two images per submission if they wish. However, if applicants want to submit more than two images they must fill out a separate form and pay a separate fee.

3. Your image entry must represent film or film making as outlined in our ‘about’ section above.

4. All submissions will be judged by Waterford Film Festival Committees appointed by the Festival Director. Their reports and decisions are final and confidential.

5. COPYRIGHT: Photographers/Videographers are responsible for securing all copyright clearances that may be associated with their image/photo that includes but not limited to: actors/models releases, locations/permissions etc. The Festival or our Venue Partners, Odeon Cinemas is not responsible for any copyright claim on images.

6. Due to time restraint we can not provide feedback.
7. Once an image(s) is submitted for consideration it cannot be retracted.
8.The application shall indemnify (compensate for harm/loss) and hold The Waterford Film Festival and the Odeon Cinema and employees of said entities from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity and loss of or damage to the images entered (this includes images used for exhibit purposes).

9. Artists retain all rights to their photos/images but for awarded pictures (including finalists) copyright holders grant the Waterford Film Festival unlimited non-exclusive use of high-resolution pictures for activities in all media. This includes social media, online and print in relation to the contest, festival and the exhibition without any remuneration being due.

10. All artists will be notified by November 1st if they have been selected as a finalist and are free to announce this as they so please.

11. The photographer(s) must be the author(s) of the pictures submitted in his/her/their name.

12. We will use winning images, plus four other images for the exhibition. Pictures must meet the following specifications:
1 Upload images with the original pixel size (unless cropped).
2. Pictures must be uploaded in JPEG format with high quality compression.
3. Pictures with captions/taglines must be written in English.

13. Entries must be submitted via www.waterfordfilmfestival.net or www.filmfreeway.com/waterfordfilmfestival. Entries sent in other ways will not be accepted.

14. The overall winners will need to provide frames for all of their photos/images for the exhibit. i.e framed and ready to be displayed. A member of the Festival team will be in touch with the winner to arrange transport/delivery of these materials.

15. Image selections will be announced on or before the 1st November 2021. All entrants will be notified by email.

16. The Waterford Film Festival reserves the right to amend these rules at any time.

17. Pictures taken at restricted events (that is, events where only photographers commissioned by those organising the event - for example governments, political parties or corporations have access) are not accepted.

18. Adjustments of colour or conversion to grayscale are permitted.

19. The copyright holders represent and warrant that submission of the pictures does not breach any law and further that no third party can hold any claims or any objections regarding the rights granted to the Waterford Film Festival and Odeon Cinemas specified.

20 The entry rules and any dispute, proceedings or claim of whatever nature arising out of or in any way relating to the entry rules (including any non-contractual disputes or claims) shall be governed by Irish law.

21. By entering your image(s) for consideration for the Principle Image Photography Competition, you authorize that your work is cleared for Festival exhibition at The Waterford Film Festival/Odeon Cinema Waterford and accept full legal responsibility for the intellectual property therein.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Stefan Georgiou

    A really wonderful festival run by passionate cinephiles who select a strong breadth of current cinema. Was a joy to be part of it, albeit virtually..

    January 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you Stefan again for sending us your project and for your kind words. Best of luck for the future!

  • Sidhe Company

    Thrilled to be selected for Waterford Film Festival in 2020. A really fantastic film festival with a real connection to the industry and film makers. The festival was virtual because of the pandemic and we took part in networking sessions online. Great communication from the festival and would highly recommend. They have a well respected script competition as well. Put this festival on your watch list.

    January 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you for sending us your project and for your lovely review. We are delighted to hear you enjoyed it. Best of luck with your projects for the future!

  • connor brennan

    Great fedtival! Realy glad I could be a part of it!

    December 2020
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    Response from festival:

    Hi Connor, Thank you for your review and for sending us your project. Best of luck for the future!

  • Máire Dee

    AMAZING FILM FESTIVAL! Even in a global crisis we managed to have a great time and fell a part of something. Thank you

    December 2020
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    Response from festival:

    Hi Maire Dee, thank you for your lovely comments and for sending us your project. Delighted to hear you enjoyed it and best of luck for the future.

  • Top festival, delighted to be a part of it!

    December 2020
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you guys and for sending us your project. Best of luck for the future.