Festival Rules and Regulations

1. The first Rhodopе International Documentary Film Fest will be held from 16th to 20th of September 2021 in Smolyan.

2. The program of the first Rhodopе International Film Fest includes the following sections:

– International Documentary Competition

– International Short Documentary Competition

– Special Events: lectures, workshops

3. Film Submissions are accepted for the following sections:

– International Documentary International Competition

– Short and Medium Documentary International Competition

4. Eligibility criteria and duration of films 

– Only films completed between 1 January 2019 and 30 January 2021 are eligible for participation in /at the festival.

– All films must be «Final Cut».

– A submission can be in any language; if it is not in Bulgarian, English subtitles must be included.

5. Films duration per category 

Eligibility criteria for the Short and Medium film International Competition: 60 minutes or under.

Eligibility criteria for the Documentary Feature Films:  minimum 65 Minutes

6. Submission

Deadline for submissions

Deadline for submissions: 31th of July 2021

The festival director will choose a selection committee.

The Selection committee of three members will choose full-length films for the International Documentary Competition and shorts and medium films for the Short and Medium Documentary Competition.

7. Online submission form is available on the festival’s  home page: www.rife.bg

You can download a submissions form directly HERE.
Complete this and send it to submissions@rife.bg.

8. Submission fee: RIFE’s first edition is tax-free for film submissions. 

9. Submission procedure

> Read and accept the rules.

> Complete the submission form.

> Submit the form electronically.

10. Film Formats

– For selection purposes: secured online screener/valid at least three months after the submission deadline/.

– Accepted screening formats for the selected films: DCP; Blu-ray and other digital formats.

– Screeners of the selected films for translation in Bulgarian should be sent to the festival before august 1st 2021 together with a text file with the English subtitles. The screening formats should reach the Festival before September 1st  2021.

11. RIFE will cover all costs related to the return of the copies of the films selected for the competition sections in Smolyan to the address  given by the producer in case the film does not have another destination. RIFE will cover all the expenses connected with the storage and insurance of the films during the Festival.

As far as loss or damage is concerned during that period of time, the festival’s liability only covers the replacement value of the copy of the film.

12. RIFE invites representative of the films in the International Documentary Competition and Short (and Medium) Documentary Competition within two days in Smolyan. All conditions for the festival guests are included in their personal invitations.  

> It is desirable that each competing film be represented by its maker or by a representative of the film during the event.

> Our guest services team will get in touch with each selected filmmaker to provide all the necessary information concerning transportation, accommodation and festival accreditation.

13. Festival Juries and Awards

An international jury of three members will determine the award-winning films in each category.


Grand Prix Award for Best Film in the International Competition (goes to the director and producer of the film);

Short Film Award for Best Short Film Competition (goes to the director and producer of the film);

Audience Award – The Audience will vote for its preferable Competition (goes to the director and producer of the film).

The juries’ decisions are final and cannot be appealed.

The festival reserves the right to present a selection of films on its online platform after the end of the festival in Bulgaria between the 20th and the 30th of September.

The festival reserves the right to present a selection of award-winning films after the festival in neighboring Greece (max. two screenings) and Turkey (max. two screenings) until October 30, 2021  

14. Accreditation requests will be open from August 10th 2021 until September 1st, 2021.

15. Participation in the RIFE shall presume observation of all articles of the present Regulations.

The festival director has the right to settle all cases and issues not covered by these Regulations.

16. For additional information please check the festival website www.rife.bg or contact us at info@rife.bg


Submission to RIFE constitutes agreement to all rules, regulations and conditions contained in this document and your consent that your film be considered for any awards that may be given at the Festival. Submission also certifies that all film and music rights and clearances have been obtained (in accordance with UK copyright laws). By submitting, you agree not to withdraw your film from RIFE after it has been accepted by the selection board.