Regulations Film Submission
for the 39th DOK.fest München (1–20 May 2024)
Thank you very much for your interest in submitting your film to the 39th DOK.fest München (1–12 May 2024 @cinemas, 6–20 May @home)!
DOK.fest München is the festival for internationally artistically outstanding and socially relevant documentary films. As the largest festival of its kind in Germany, it has become one of the most relevant platforms for documentary film in Europe in recent years.
The 39th DOK.fest München will also combine the best of both worlds into a dual festival experience: From May 1 to 12, the selected documentary films will be presented in Munich cinemas and exclusive special venues, and from May 6 to 20, they will be shown on our digital screen throughout Germany.
1. General conditions of participation
Every documentary film submitted for the 39th DOK.fest München (except for submissions for DOK.education) must meet the following requirements:
- Your film must have been completed after 1 January 2023.
- We accept films with a duration of at least 52 minutes.
- Until the screening at the festival, the submitted film must not have had a regular theatrical release in Germany, nor have been broadcast by ARD (incl. third channels), arte, 3sat or ZDF. Furthermore, films that are available on internet platforms are excluded from the festival. In individual cases, the decision on admission is the responsibility of the festival management.
- The film must be submitted by 18 December 2023 via the online form.
- After a brief review of your submission, you will receive a request for payment, which must also be paid by 18 December 2023.
2. Language versions
English or German subtitles are required for the viewing process. An exception exists for submissions in German, English, French and Spanish. Please write a short comment that you will deliver the subtitles at a later stage. If your film is invited to the festival, German or English subtitles are mandatory. If your film is selected for one of the competitions, English subtitles are required for jury viewing.
3. Programming / Selection
All programming decisions are made by our selection committee. Submissions for specific series are not possible. The head of programme takes ultimate responsibility for the film’s selection and the allocation of the different sections. World premieres are preferred for the competition sections. German premiere status is obligatory for this. Premieres will also be preferred outside the competition sections.
4. Granting of rights, legal guarantees and exemptions
By submitting the film, you guarantee to be the sole owner of all rights to the work. This includes the rights to the image of the persons appearing in the film, the copyrights and ancillary copyrights of all parties involved in the production of the film, and the personal or other rights of third parties. The screening rights of the film and the trailer, the right to distribute the press material are to be temporarily granted to DOK.fest München in case your film is selected. The same applies to the transfer of rights for the presentation of the film on the digital screen.
If your film is selected for the festival, you grant DOK.fest München these rights without the need for any further declaration. You shall exempt DOK.fest München from any claims by third parties in connection with the rights referred to in Item 4 Paragraph 1, including the reasonable costs of the necessary legal defense such as, in particular, attorney's fees and court costs.
5. Publicity / Promotion
If your film is selected we require press and photo material to be provided promptly. By accepting the regulations, you assure that you will make the material (online download link, photos, texts, trailers) available to the festival for press relations and promotional purposes in our print materials, on our website as well as on our social media channels in the context of DOK.fest München. Likewise, you agree that DOK.fest München may use film clips of up to three minutes as part of the festival coverage on the website. With your consent, you also grant DOK.fest München the right to pass on photos as well as trailers to selected partners for promotional purposes.
For the presentation of our respective festival edition on the website, you agree to the retention period of the photo material in our archive.
6. Screening format
The following exhibition formats are required:
- DCI compliant Digital Cinema Package DCP
- ProRes File 4.2.2 HQ (sound format 5.1) or a H.264 file
7. Submission fee
Due to the high processing costs and the large number of projects submitted, we see ourselves compelled to charge a processing fee of 40.00 euros per submission. Films from emerging countries are exceptions. For the exemption of the submission fee, the country of production is decisive, not the filming location! A list of countries exempt from the fee can be found in our online form and here. Submissions for DOK.education are exempt from paying the submission fee.
8. Steps to film submission
Film submissions are made via our website.
- If you are submitting a film for the first time and do not yet have a user account with us, please register here by creating an account.
- If you already have an account, you can log in at our website at any time and submit a new film. In case you have forgotten your password, you can request a new one via our system.
- To submit via the online form, select the module "Your films" under "Your account" after logging in. You can then use the button "Submit a film" (top right) to start your submission.
Please fill in the online form completely (including online screening link – a rough cut is sufficient). Please enter correct and, if possible, complete information about the submitted film, as we will work with the information you enter when selecting the film for our programme. The information you provide will be included in our (online) programme booklet.
- For the free submission for DOK.education, please select the section "DOK.education school programme" under "Registration for".
- For the free submission for the Student Award, please select the section "Student Award" under "Registration for".
- If you would like to submit your film additionally for the German Documentary Film Music Award and/or the VFF Documentary Film Production Award, you must submit it separately for the respective programme section. Please select "German Documentary Film Music Award" / "VFF Documentary Film Production Award" under "Registration for".
Payment of the submission fee can be made directly in your user account. You will receive a payment request by e-mail after your submission has been checked. The terms and conditions of the respective payment service provider apply.
Upon receipt of your film submission as well as the submission fee, you will receive a confirmation email to the email address you provided during online registration. Submissions that are incomplete or do not meet the above criteria will be considered rejected and will not be screened.
For the time being, please do not send us any digital photos, trailers or transcripts. If your film is selected, we will request this material from you. We ask for your understanding that print material sent in unfortunately cannot be returned.
9. Submission for DOK.education
For our section DOK.education we accept submissions for the workshops of the school programme. These have to fulfill the following requirements:
- Content must focus on life worlds and/or perspectives of children and youth or young adults.
- Artistically narrated documentary films up to 30 minutes in length will be considered.
More information about DOK.education can be found here.
Deadline for submissions to DOK.education also is 18 December 2023.
10. Screening fee
DOK.fest München pays screening fees, both for the presentation in the cinemas and additionally on the digital screen. The screening fee is agreed with the rights holders – taking into account the best possible presentation of the festival films, we focus on invitations to the filmmakers and the corresponding (proportional) reimbursement of travel and hotel costs.
In addition, all films in the competition sections and, beyond that, all festival films have the opportunity to win a prize in various cross-sectional competitions (DOK.fest Award of SOS Kinderdörfer weltweit, German Documentary Film Music Award, VFF Documentary Film Production Award and FFF Documentary Talent Award). There are no claims to the assumption of costs or to any other form of remuneration.
11. Validity of the entry conditions
By completing the registration using the online form, you accept the validity of the conditions of participation. These entry conditions apply to all current film submissions, even if they have not been expressly agreed upon again. DOK.fest München does not recognize deviating terms and conditions even if they are known, unless DOK.fest München has expressly agreed to their validity in writing.
12. Place of jurisdiction and the application of German law
Munich is understood as the place of jurisdiction as far as it is permissible. The law of the Federal Republic of Germany applies to the exclusion of conflicting laws.
If you have any questions about the regulations and the submission, please contact: