Berlinale: How to Berlinale

How to Berlinale
A short guide to film submission

Sections and Programmes

The international Competition features around 25 films in the Official Programme (in and out of competition). The Awards are decided upon by an International Jury. Contact:

The Berlinale Special and Berlinale Special Gala are programmes curated by the Festival Director that present both extraordinary new productions (feature films and documentaries) as well as films by or about outstanding personalities of film whom the festival is especially attached to. Contact: . Berlinale Special Series is part of the Berlinale Special programme presenting selected international drama series. Contact: . The Berlinale Special programmes are upon invitation only and do not receive submissions.

The Panorama within the Official Programme presents new works by well-known directors, as it showcases debut films and exciting new discoveries. The selection of films gives an overview of trends in art-house world cinema. Contact:

New trends in world cinema, fresh narrative forms and new voices receive special attention in the Forum. Narrative features that go beyond the mainstream are presented alongside of documentary and hybrid forms. The Forum highlights directorial debuts and innovative works by younger filmmakers. Forum Expanded is dedicated to the boundaries between cinema and visual arts. It is a programme curated by the Forum upon invitation only and does not receive submissions.

Generation opens up the Berlinale to children and young people. The Kplus and 14plus competitions not only present outstanding productions made specifically for children and youth but also films which appeal to young people of various ages, on account of their form and content. The marketing potential of such films is thereby greatly enhanced. Contact:

The Berlinale Shorts features short films by film makers and artists, that are innovative both in their aesthetic form and in their content. The Awards are decided upon by an International Jury.

The Perspektive Deutsches Kino is dedicated to young and upcoming German filmmakers.

The Culinary Cinema presents a selection of films from all categories on culinary and ecological topics. It is a special programme upon invitation only. Contact:

NATIVe – A Journey into Indigenous Cinema presents a limited selection of Indigenous films from all categories. It is a special programme upon invitation only. Contact:

Requirements valid for all submissions

  • Submission:
    available from early September only via
  • Deadline for submission:
    October 31, 2016, for feature-length films / November 15, 2016 for short films
  • Entry fee:
    € 150 feature-length films / € 60 short films
  • Date of completion:
    within the 12 months prior to festival
  • Premiere Status:
    World or International premieres are given priority, however, the sections have different requirements. German films need to be world premieres, except those submitted to Perspektive Deutsches Kino.
  • Accepted formats for selection:
    Blu-ray / DVD (region free / all regions), DCP, file upload via
  • Documentation for submission:
    Duly completed entry form, full contact details of production companies, synopsis, director’s filmo- / biography, cast and crew list

Please check our General Guidelines for Submission and Participation as well as specific terms and conditions for each section..
The festival does not present industry films or commercials.
Film submission for the European Film Market at

„How to Berlinale"-Download

The "How to Berlinale" short guide including a table of the submission requirements for each section can be downloaded here:

How to Berlinale, PDF  (44 KB)


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Programme Organisation
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