Rules & regulations submissions

Read the rules and regulations for film submissions for the Movies that Matter Festival 2025 below.

General programme information
The Movies that Matter Festival 2025 will take place from 21 29 March 2025, in The Hague, The Netherlands and several satellite cities. 

The festival will feature the following competitions: 

  • Grand Jury Documentary: 8 documentaries about social issues 
  • Grand Jury Fiction: 8 fiction films about social issues 
  • Activist competition: 8 documentaries about Human Rights defenders. 
  • Camera Justitia competition: 8 documentaries and fiction films about (inter)national justice and the rule of law.  
  • Dutch Movies Matter competition: 8 documentaries and fiction films about Human Rights made by Dutch filmmakers. 
  • Shorts competition: all selected shorts will compete for the Shorts Award (exceptions possible). 
  • Students’ Choice Award in cooperation with the University Leiden. 
  • Panorama section, non-competitive. Films in this section will also take part in the Audience Award. 

The non-competitive section includes Take on Future, Take on Power, Take on Love, Festival Favourites, and a theme(s) that changes every year. For more info about competitions and themes, please check here.

If your film is selected for the festival, you hereby agree to the rules & regulations below. 

1. Eligble for submission
  • The fee for submission is:

    Early Bird  3 June – 31 July 2024 € 20,- 
    Normal Fee  1 August30 September 2024 € 25,- 
    Late Fee 1 October – 1 November 2024 € 35,- 
  • Only documentaries and fiction films finalised or with a world premiere in 2024/2025 are eligible to submit.  
  • Movies that Matter does not require a premiere status but does take it into account with the final decision-making regarding the film selection. 
  • All lengths are accepted.  
  • Films already released in Dutch cinemas, broadcasted on Dutch television, or available online for free are not eligible for submission. Films available on paid online platforms are eligible to submit. 
  • Films must be submitted with English commentary and/or English dialogue or in the original version with English subtitles. 
  • Film submission is possible until 1 November 2024. 
  • If a submitted film does not match the requirements stated above, a refund of the submission fee is not guaranteed. 
2. Selection of the film and usage of the publicity materials
  • The final selection will be announced at the end of February. You will be informed about the outcome via email. Because of the enormous amount of submitted films, we are unfortunately not always able to inform you about the exact reasons for our decision. 
  • Selected films can only be shown at the festival if they have English commentary and/or English dialogue, or if they are in the original version with English subtitles. 
  • Films should be submitted as DCP for screening at the festival. 
  • Selection decisions made by the festival management are final. 
  • If a film is selected, the festival organisation must receive publicity material (pressbooks, posters, stills, clips, trailers, etc.) by February 10, 2025. 
  • Movies that Matter is allowed to use publicity materials for all marketing purposes before, during, and after the festival. This includes using stills, trailers, and clips for promotion of the festival and the organisation of Movies that Matter in general. Parts of some of the trailers will be used in the festival trailer, and the Activist promotional videos. 
  • After the official selection of a documentary or fiction film in any Movies that Matter programme, the festival has the right to use three minutes of a documentary or film for broadcasting purposes on national or international television and online. 
  • If a film is selected, Movies that Matter can use your photos later for publicity purposes for other publications of Movies that Matter. 
3. Shipping expenses and insurance if film is selected
  • Movies that Matter will provide the service to upload the film (DCP and MP4) through a service called FilmFetch. 
  • DCPs and MP4 files of the film must be received no later than 2 weeks before the start of the festival.  
  • The film’s digital file will be removed from the festival servers within 4 months after the festival. 
4. Awards
  • Grand Jury Documentary Award €5.000 
  • Grand Jury Fiction Award €5.000 
  • Activist Documentary Award €5.000 
  • Camera Justitia Award 5.000 
  • Dutch Movies Matter Award 5.000 
  • Audience Award 5.000 
  • Shorts Award €1.500 
  • Students’ Choice Award €1.500 

Submit your film