Entry rules and regulations



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


The 10th BELDOCS will be held from 8-15 May 2017.


Submission to the festival is open to feature-length creative documentaries completed after 1 January 2016. The festival gives priority to international and European premieres. Documentaries that have already been shown in Serbia are not eligible. Student works are excluded from submission to the festival. Documentaries previously submitted to the festival that were not selected will not be reconsidered for the subsequent year.

Entry fee

There is no entry fee for submitting documentaries.


Participation in Beldocs 2017 implies acceptance of the rules and regulations by directors, producers, and their representatives.


International competition

Directors of a feature-length (60 minutes or longer) documentary that is an international or European premiere at BELDOCS are eligible for the international competition. An international jury will select a grand prix.

National competition

Directors of a medium-length (50-60 minutes) or feature-length documentary produced by a Serbian minority or majority partner that is an international premiere at BELDOCS are eligible for the national competition. An international jury will select a grand prix. In addition, a special jury award will be presented to an exceptional artistic achievement in the national competition.

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.

Committing to the competitions

Documentaries cannot be withdrawn after accepting an invitation to participate. After acceptance documentaries may not be screened at any other festival or public event prior to the official presentation at BELDOCS.

Promotional materials

Directors, producers, and distributors are urged to make available in a timely manner all requested publicity materials for promotion.

Mentioning participation

Directors, producers, and distributors of participating and awarded documentaries in BELDOCS competitions are requested to mention this activity in future promotional materials. The appropriate logos will be made available through our press department.

Submission guidelines and materials

Entry form

Documentaries should be submitted online through

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 2017. The festival is not obliged to view entries that are received after this date.

Preview copy

All submissions require English language subtitles, with the exception of documentaries that have no spoken dialogue. To complete your submission the festival requires a preview copy. Please upload your preview copy to Vimeo and submit the link. The Vimeo link should be downloadable and the password should be valid until June 2017. Please confirm that the link and password match. If you cannot provide a Vimeo link please upload your file through the BELDOCS uploader. This link will be made available upon request. Only online digital previews will be accepted. No hardware of any kind should be sent to the festival office for preview purposes.

Additional materials

Requested materials include press notes and publicity materials such as (all in English): documentary synopsis, director statement, director biography, director filmography, full cast and credits list. If an item is not available at the time of submission it will be requested immediately upon selection.


All documentaries presented at the festival are invited by the festival selectors. Please note that due to the volume of submissions it is not possible for the festival team to maintain contact with all those who submit work, nor is it possible to offer feedback. A direct request by the selectors to preview work does not guarantee an invitation to the festival.


The full screening schedule will be announced in April 2017 on the BELDOCS website.  Announcements of selected documentaries as well as special programs are at the discretion of the festival.

Selected documentaries

Participant obligation

Participation in the festival requires the unconditional adherence to its regulations as set forth here.

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 2017. 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).

Video library / preview platform

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 or on DVD. 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 either a DVD or 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 2017. If an encrypted DCP will be delivered the DKDM time widow should be valid from 15 April 2017 through 1 June 2017. Prints/videos must arrive in Serbia before 15 April 2017.


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 October 2016