Submission Regulations

Festival - 14.10.2019.

Entry rules and regulations


International Documentary Film Festival BELDOCS aims to offer a quality selection of creative international documentary cinema and various hybrid filmmaking format. Devoted to offering a platform for and actively supporting non-fiction cinema, BELDOCS is a dynamic site for encountering local and international talent and for discovering a unique selection of world, international and European premieres.

The 13th BELDOCS will be held in the month of May, 2020.

Submission to the festival is open to all feature-length creative documentaries completed after 1 January 2018. Preference for the international competition will be given to the documentaries completed after 1 January 2019. Special preference is given to world, international and European premieres. Serbian premiere is the minimum requirement for submission. Documentaries that have already been shown in Serbia are NOT eligible for inclusion, except by special provision of the festival team. Documentaries previously submitted to the festival that were not selected will not be reconsidered for the subsequent year, unless by special provision of the festival team.

Participation in Beldocs 2020 implies acceptance of the rules and regulations by directors, producers, and their representatives.

Competitions and Official Program

International competition
Directors of a feature-length (50 minutes or longer) documentary that is a world, international, European or Serbian premiere at BELDOCS are eligible for the international competition. An international jury will select a grand prix. Special mentions are also given out occasionally.

National competition
Directors of a feature-length (50 minutes or longer) documentary produced by a Serbian minority or majority partner that is an international premiere at BELDOCS are eligible for the national competition. In order to be considered for the National competition ALL films MUST have their first public showing in Serbia at BELDOCS. Films that were shown at other Serbian festivals beforehand will not be considered for this selection. An international jury will select a grand prix. In addition, a special jury award will be presented to exceptional artistic achievements in the field of editing and cinematography.

Official Program
Directors of short-length (up to 30 minutes), medium-length (30-60 minutes) or feature-length documentaries are eligible for official programs: Fireworks, Meteors, Front Page, Profile, Landscape, Intermission, Prime Time and other selections. More details regarding the programs in Official Selections will be published on

Other awards
Additional awards presented at BELDOCS include but are not limited to a FIPRESCI award (an international critics jury) a political engagement award (sponsoring partner to be confirmed), and various technical awards.

Promotional materials
Directors, producers, and distributors are urged to respect the deadline for providing all requested publicity materials for promotion.

Mentioning participation
Directors, producers, and distributors of participating and awarded documentaries in BELDOCS competitions are requested to mention inclusion in the BELDOCS program in future promotional materials. The appropriate logos and laurels will be made available through our press department.

Submission guidelines and materials

Entry form
Documentaries should be submitted through on-line submission platform FilmFreeWay.

Submission deadline
The submission deadline for selection purposes, which means the deadline for the festival office to receive all required submission materials, is 1 February 2020. The festival is not obliged to view entries that are received after this date.

Selected documentaries

Committing to the inclusion in the program
By submitting your film for consideration for BELDOCS 2020, you are agreeing to make the documentary available for potential multiple screenings during the festival, as well as inclusion in the online BELDOCS Market video library available to international film professionals. All submitted films will be considered and may be selected for both the competitive as well as the non-competitive programs. After being extended an official invitation to participate, documentaries cannot be withdrawn after March 15th, 2020. Selected documentaries may not be screened at any other festival or public event taking place in Serbia prior to the official presentation at BELDOCS.

Catalog materials
All contact persons of selected documentaries will receive a request for catalog materials upon confirming participation in the festival.

Required catalog materials
In order to compile the festival catalog for each selected documentary the festival must receive the requested materials: hi-res file, synopsis, director biography, director filmography, full list of crew credits. The requested materials should be sent as soon as possible upon acceptance of the invitation, but in no case later than 1 April 2020. The festival accepts no liability in the event that its publications reproduce inaccuracies in submitted materials.

In principle the festival catalog will include the following credits: original title, international title, country/countries of production, year of production, premiere status, format, length, director, production company, producer, sales company, print source, screenplay, cinematography, editing, production design, sound, music, principal cast.

Catalog writings
Catalog writings are entirely at the discretion of the festival.

Publicity materials
The publicity contacts of the documentaries participating in the festival will receive a request from the press office to send publicity materials. These materials will be used in festival publications and for distribution to the press and festival guests.

After official selection of a documentary the festival is qualified to use excerpts from the work, with a maximum of three minutes, nationally and internationally for promotional purposes. In the event that excerpts are not available, and being understood that under no circumstances the entire work may be lent out, the festival is qualified to copy one or more excerpts from the documentary for promotional use prior to and during the festival only.

For promotion of the entire selection and of each selected documentary the festival website is allowed to use any photo or digital clip (less than three minutes duration).

Beldocs Market Video library
Selected documentaries will be made available during the festival in the video library and for a set amount of time on the festival preview platform. Both are accessible only for the festival organization and registered guests through the festival closed circuit server. By accepting the festival invitation, the rights holders grant permission for their documentary to be included on the preview platform and in the video library, unless otherwise stated. For this purpose, all participants will be requested to make available a digital file of their documentary for encoding purposes.

Press and industry screenings
The festival will organize press and industry screenings for selected documentaries. Rights holders of documentaries included in the video library and press and industry screenings will receive detailed viewing reports and attendant lists afterwards.

General scheduling and the timetabling of both public screenings and press and industry screenings are entirely at the discretion of the festival organization.

Selected documentaries will be screened in their original version. In principle, if not with English dialogue, documentaries must be subtitled in English. If necessary, and only with the prior approval of the festival, a documentary can be subtitled using an electronic subtitling system. In this case it is imperative, before shipping the print, to send the festival the English dialogue list including time codes together with the final version of the documentary on DVD. Any cost incurred for translation, or producing time-coded files or DVDs, must be covered by the rights holders of the documentary.

Film formats and video systems that can be presented during the festival include: 8mm, 16mm, 35mm, DCP, Blu-ray. Presentation of other formats and video systems or delivery through any other type of disk, formatting or licenses requires the prior authorization of the festival. Without this authorization the festival retains the right to exclude a documentary from the program.

Shipping prints and videos of selected documentaries

Shipping instructions
Detailed print/video/DCP shipping information will follow acceptance of the documentary.

Availability of screening copy
Unless authorized by the festival prints/video must be made available for the entire festival period. A DCP can be returned upon request after ingesting and testing. If you send a DCP take into account that the festival needs time for testing and ingesting, and therefore the DCP must be available until 15 April 2020. If an encrypted DCP will be delivered the DKDM time widow should be valid from 15 April 2020 through 1 June 2020. Prints/videos must arrive in Serbia before 15 April 2020.

The sender is requested to inform the festival about the means of dispatch, date of shipment, and the airway bill number. The documentary must be sent prepaid by the sender. No collect shipments will be accepted unless authorized by the festival. The festival will only pay for the return transportation charges, excluding any additional costs for tax and custom clearance in the country of return.

Pro forma
A pro forma invoice must accompany the print/video stating the name of the sender, the title of the documentary, format, length, number of reels (if applicable), and whether it is in color or black and white.

Print return
All prints will be returned within six weeks after the festival. It is the responsibility of each participant to inform the festival in due time about any change in the details of the return address as well as the desired date of arrival at the return address. In case there is no confirmation of the address within two weeks after the festival the screening copy will be returned to the print source of the documentary as listed with the original submission. The festival is not liable for any inconvenience this may cause.

The insurance for copies comes into effect the moment the documentary has arrived at the festival office or has been received by the shipping agent at Belgrade Airport. The insurance remains in effect until the documentary is reshipped. In case of damage to or loss of a print during the festival the festival is only responsible for the costs involved in making a new print or replacing the damaged reel or reels based on the current laboratory rates for ordering a standard print.

Damage claims
Damage to the print must be reported to the festival in writing within a month after return and prior to any following screening. Any claims will be judged by the reported state of the print. The insurance does not cover any damage during normal screening use.

Entry and participation of documentaries implies unconditional acceptance of these regulations as set forth. In unspecified cases the festival management will make a final decision.

Last updated in September 2019


You are using an outdated browser which can not show modern web content.

We suggest you download Chrome or Firefox.