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Awards & Prizes / Rules

Awards & Prizes: 

We award the best independent filmmakers after a comprehensive evaluation process. All Finalist gets LAURELS, with an opportunity to contest at a combination of audience and judges vote for a TROPHY at various categories and a DISTRIBUTION OFFER which is optional to you.


Filmmakers will have access to festival Screenings, Red carpet Interviews, Awards Ceremony and Networking opportunities in Toronto, Canada.


About our Waiver Policy:

Vert Important! IBDFF believe in a fair policy to every filmmaker. We try to keep reasonable fees for all submissions, and we offer regular discounts to students and new filmmakers, however, no waivers at this stage.




  • I/We have read all the International Black & Diversity Film Festival – (IBDFF) rules.

  • I/We understand and have complied with these rules.

  • I/We warrant the submission of my/our original work and there are no disputes regarding the ownership of the submission.

  • I/We also warrant the submitted material does not defame or invade the rights of any person living or dead and I/we fully indemnify the Festival against any claim made for such violations of law.

  • To the best of my/our knowledge, all of the statements herein are true and correct.

  • I/We understand that failure to adhere to the Festival rules will result in disqualification and forfeiture of the entry fee.

  • I/We agree to hold IBDFF harmless from and defend them against all claims, demands, losses, damages, judgments, liabilities, and expenses (including legal fees) arising out of or in connection with any and all claims of third parties, whether or not groundless, based on any film submitted to the Festival. I understand that the festival projection format may change and I will be notified of the required format once my film is accepted.

  • All selected films must be available to screen, we will inform you of the appropriate screening format.

Official (Jury) Prizes:


Black Film Categories:

  • Best Narrative Feature - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best Documentary Feature - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best First Feature Narrative - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best Film – By A Black Female Filmmaker

  • Best Short Narrative - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best Short Documentary - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best Web series - By A Black Filmmaker

  • Best Music Video - By A Black Filmmaker


International Film Categories:

  • Best Narrative Feature - International Film Category

  • Best Documentary Feature - International Film Category

  • Best First Feature Narrative- International Film Category

  • Best Film By A Female Filmmaker - International Film Category

  • Best Short Narrative - International Film Category

  • Best Short Documentary- International Film Category

  • Best Web series - International Film Category

  • Best Music Video - International Film Category


  • Best Kids Movie

  • Best Movie Trailer / Teasers (5minutes Max)

  • Best Movie Posters – Any Category

  • Experimental Movies



  • Audience Favorites

  • Programmers' Awards

  • Festival Director Awards

  • Achievement Awards



Filmmakers will have access to festival Screenings, Red carpet Interviews, Awards Ceremony and Networking opportunities in Toronto, Canada.


Festivals Live Screening & Awards Night

York Cinemas

115 York Blvd, Richmond Hill, ON L4B 3B4

Submission & Evaluation Process:

We create an opportunity for filmmakers to get their films judged and let them compete with other filmmakers. We perform a comprehensive evaluation process and select only high-quality films.

The evaluation process is a three-stage process: 
  • Reviewing for official selection by the jury and selection of Finalist. 

  • Screening for sets of filmmakers and audience to review and vote the best film. 

  • Declaration of Festival Finalist.

  • Finalist gets a screening at the annual event and compete with other films for “Best of the Best Picture”

  • Rules & Regulations:

  • The competition is open to films from Black Filmmakers, or films made by anyone with Black Actors in Key Roles. We also accept all films in the international category, Films made by Canadians.

  • Please check individual categories and submit suitable categories to your project.

  • Feature films are 30 minutes in length or longer. Short films are under 30 minutes in length. All non-English speaking films must be presented in their original version with English subtitles.


  • All Entries with or without distribution deals are welcome.


  • Films previously entered and screened at our festival are eligible for one additional re-entry in subsequent years.


  • Entries must be submitted for pre-screening online. See our submission section If you use a secured link, you are REQUIRED to keep us updated with passwords.


  • Works in progress are accepted. We cannot promise that we will be able to watch re-edited submissions. Please only submit works in progress if submitting close to the final deadline.


  • IBDFF confirms that the festival has the permission to exhibit your film(s) during the festival and /or at any other Festival event. Submission of a work implies that the Festival can employ moving image excerpts and reproduce stills of exhibition promotion. Credit will be given to any filmmaker or screenwriter of such material is used in Festival promotion. The original copyright holder retains all rights to their work.


  • You may submit multiple entries but must pay an entry fee for each.


  • If the movie has nudity or sex. The movie should have a strong storyline; however, we are strictly not accepting any movies about porn, animal cruelty.


  • To submit a Film for Festival consideration, Applicants must complete the registration process and pay the required fee by the deadlines. Submissions must be postmarked or online submitted via our various submission platforms. Submitted DVDs must contain one version only of the Film, in the original language of production, with English subtitles if the original language is not English.

  • DVDs must be labelled in the following manner: Title. Production company name, phone number, and address. Director’s name. Length in minutes and platform tracking number.

  • Where the applicant chooses to forward a DVD instead of an online screener, the Applicant is responsible for ensuring that the submitted DVD screener plays in its entirety on an industry-standard DVD player. If IBDFF is unable to view the DVD, IBDFF is under no obligation, to contact the Applicant in order to obtain a replacement DVD.

  • IBDFF will not review multiple versions of a submitted Film. Only one version of the Film may be submitted. If multiple versions are submitted, IBDFF will view only the version that was received first.

  • Note! DVD screeners will not be returned.

  • All Films must be sent by way of prepaid shipping. IBDFF will not accept cash-on-delivery shipments or be responsible for duties, taxes or customs brokerage. Charges are to be billed to the sender. IBDFF is not responsible for and will not accept shipments incurring expenses for terminal charges, duties, taxes or customs brokerage. Shipping and customs charges are to be billed to the sender. Any shipping charges incurred by IBDFF will be billed back to the Applicant.


Let's Work Together

The International Black & Diversity Film Festival – IBDFF is an independent film festival and part of the Black Actors & Film Guild Canada registered as a Canadian not-for-profit association established to give a platform to Black Actors, Writers, Artists, and Filmmakers while celebrating cultural diversity through inclusion, bringing independent films and filmmakers from around the globe to showcase their work here in Toronto, Canada every year

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