The Weengushk International Film Festival (WIFF) is an Indigenous-run independent film festival on Manitoulin Island in Northern Ontario. The core philosophy of the festival is to present the highest quality films that emphasize Indigenous voices, human rights, social issues, and the environment, contributing to the development of narrative sovereignty by Indigenous peoples.

In 2023, we will be producing an in-person (following COVID-19 safety guidelines if applicable) experience.

WIFF’s aim is to screen films and provide support to the local filmmakers on Manitoulin Island, which the local community would not normally have access to. The festival showcases unique and important work by young and emerging as well as established award-winning Indigenous and diverse filmmakers from across Canada, around the world and from around the corner -- including profiling films by Weengushk Film Institute (WFI) graduates. The film festival engages the local community through multidisciplinary activities such as film screenings, keynote speakers, presentations, musical performances, The Language and Industry workshops.

The combination of high quality films screened in an intimate festival allows WIFF to support and build community, and connect filmmakers, creating an invaluable network for the creation and dissemination of film. With the intent of sharing each other's culture, and language, WIFF provides a safe and Indigenous-centered gathering place for student learners and experienced filmmakers to share their experiences, skills, craft and exchange and celebrate their stories.

The Artistic Director is Dr. Shirley Cheechoo C.M., an accomplished and awarding winning artist, actor and filmmaker. She was awarded the Order of Canada in 2018.

- Any film that was created by or focuses on Indigenous people;
- Any film that highlights Indigenous stories or issues (Canadian or International);
- Films may be Short Films, Feature Films, or Documentaries;
- All films must have been completed within the last (3) three years; and
- Filmmakers may submit more than one film.
Note: There will be a Non-Indigenous Showcase at the Weengushk International Film Festival which will contain films with non-Indigenous content.

Our vision is to bring communities together, to not only highlight excellence and opportunity for the filmmakers but to engage non-Indigenous communities through Indigenous storytelling with the film industry in a region that needs this bridge. It is a festival that celebrates our own narratives

DATES: The 5th edition of Weengushk International Film Festival will be held July 14th – 16th 2023
• The Early Bird Submissions Deadline is November 4th, 2022 - entry fee is $20.00. Shorts under 50 minutes, $25.00 - features
• The Official Submissions Deadline is November 25th, 2022- entry fee is $25.00 for Shorts and $30.00 for features.
• The Late Deadline is December 30th, 2022 – entry fee $35.00 for shorts and $40.00 for features.

Each film submission will be pre-screened by Weengushk International Film Festival’s screening committee to determine which films will be screened during the Festival. Not all submissions will be programmed. The Festival presentation format is Blue Ray and digital upload pro-res HQ or better only. DCP will not be accepted.

Private video links. Submission material will be returned only if the sender includes a self-addressed stamped envelope. All submissions must have the title, running time and format.

• Films must have been completed in 2020, 2021 and 2022.
• Works that have been previously submitted, but not programmed, are permitted to re-submit.
• Submissions that have been made available widely to the public over the; Internet (YouTube, iTunes, Vimeo, etc..), or television, or that have screened publicly within a 200 kilometre radius of Manitoulin Island are not eligible. Filmmakers are encouraged to contact the Festival if they are unsure if this eligibility rule applies to them. Films may be works-in-progress.
• All films must be made available to screen by June 15th, 2023
• Films must be in English or in the original language with English subtitles.
• Available press materials must be shipped to Weengushk Film Institute upon notification of selection.
• Upon selection, the entrant grants permission for the use of all publicity materials (including preview BluRays and digital clips) to be used for promotional purposes, unless otherwise noted.

Upon acceptance into the Festival, the scheduling of screening dates, times and locations is at the sole discretion of Weengushk International Film Festival.

In the instance of a lost or damaged screener, Weengushk International Film Festival will compensate only for the cost of creating a new copy. Weengushk International Film Festival assumes responsibility for the copy from the time of delivery to the time at which a print is rendered to a shipping agent.

Weengushk International Film Festival
5494 HWY 540 PO Box 357
M’Chigeeng, Ontario, Canada P0P 1G0

Overall Rating
  • Great Canadian Native film fest!

    December 2022
  • Sebastian J. Lowe

    Thank you for including us in your festival! Wished we could have been there 😊. Best wishes!

    July 2022
  • Angel Panag

    Excellent festival. This festival, it's organizers and Dr. Cheechoo are certainly pillars in the Manitoulin arts and film community. They do it for the love of film, and certainly want to create an impact through the films they screen.

    August 2021
  • An incredible festival to have our film screen at. Thank you to all the organizers who worked hard to make it a reality - we were honoured to be a part of the Q&A, and to see our film shared with everyone!

    July 2021
  • Krista Davis

    There have been a few festivals that have really stood out, especially over a year after participating in virtual events. Weengushk was definitely one of them. Hats off to the organizing team - they were super on-it and engaging. And as much as it's maybe possible, I felt like I was “at” the festival.

    The programming was interesting and the Q+As thoughtful. …I left the Q+A thankful for the conversations my films were able to engage with within the framework of this festival. It was refreshing and generative and gave me new things to think about. I was truly honored to be a part of this festival.

    July 2021