1. The aim of the Festival dei Popoli – International Documentary Film Festival – is to promote and help circulate creative documentary and cutting-edge films, to foster discussion between various branches of learning, and to provide a space for the cinematic arts and other disciplines to engage with each other and grow.

2. The festival is organized by the Festival dei Popoli – Italian Institute for Social Documentary Film ONLUS - with the contribution of Creative Europe MEDIA Programme, the Italian Ministry of Culture, Tuscany Region, City of Florence. Additional contributions are made by other institutions and private sponsors.

3. The 64rd edition of the Festival dei Popoli – International Documentary Film Festival – will take place in Florence from November the 4th to the 12nd, 2023. The Festival programme includes: International Competition, Italian Competition, tributes and retrospectives, parallel sections, workshops, debates, special events. The decisions of the Directors and the Selection Committee are based on the artistic and narrative values of the films, on the originality and relevance of the topics, paying attention to gender representation in the overall composition of the programme.


Documentaries from all countries will be considered only if completed after November 1st, 2022 (or premiered after that date). In exceptional cases, and only at the discretion of the Festival Director, exemptions on the date may be made for films not yet publicly screened outside their country of origin. Films must be eligible as Italian premieres: films publicly disseminated via Internet and those already screened, in any place and context, in Italy will be excluded. World, International and European premieres will be preferred.
In case of selection, the expected screening format is DCP. Other formats must be approved by the Programming Office of the Festival.
No rental fees will be paid for the films included in the competitive sections.


a) Official Palmarès An International Jury composed of leading figures in documentary cinema will bestow the following Awards:
- Best Short Documentary (maximum length: 30 minutes): € 2,500.00 (divided equally between the director and the production).
- Best Mid-Length Documentary (length: between 31 and 60 minutes): € 4,000.00 (divided equally between the director and the production).
- Best Feature-Length Documentary (length: more than 60 minutes): € 8,000.00 (divided equally between the director and the production).
- Best Anthropological Film: “Gian Paolo Paoli” Award.

Special Mentions may also be granted.
The awards will be paid within 12 months from the Award Ceremony.

b) Audience Award: the festival audience will express their preferences by voting the films presented in the International Competition and in the Italian Competition.


Italian documentaries (minimum length: 50 minutes) will be considered only if completed after November 1st, 2022 (or premiered after that date). Films publicly disseminated on the Internet and those already screened, in any place and context, in Italy will be excluded. World premiere will be preferred.
In case of selection, the expected screening format is DCP. Other formats must be approved by the Programming Office of the Festival.
No rental fees will be paid for the films included in the competitive section.


a) Best Italian Documentary Award: € 3.000,00 equally divided between director and production.

b) CG ENTERTAINMENT "POPOLI doc" distribution award: The distribution company CG Entertainment ( offers the winning Italian film the opportunity to be published on-demand on and on the main platforms.

c) Audience Award: the festival audience will express their preferences by voting the films presented in the International Competition and in the Italian Competition. 

d) Theatrical distribution Award: "IMPERDIBILI" La Compagnia is a project promoted by the Tuscan Region: a theater in the center of Florence conceived and managed by FST - Fondazione Sistema Toscana for all those who cultivate the passion for documentary films, experimentation, and audiovisual culture in all its forms. The prize will be awarded by the Head of programming of the Cinema La Compagnia in conjunction with her team. The winner will be screened at the Cinema La Compagnia during a period of time to be agreed with the production/distribution. 

e) Theatrical distribution Award: “IL CINEMINO” Il Cinemino is a cultural project born in Milan in 2018. A welcoming and technologically avant-garde cineclub, an exchange and meeting point for all those who love the seventh art with a particular attention to social documentaries, courageous productions and first works. The "Il Cinemino" prize will be awarded by the team composed of the founding members of the Cinemino to the work that best embodies the "Cinemino" spirit: commitment, social value and formal innovation. The winning film will be programmed during a dedicated evening and held in the following days (with modalities to be agreed with the production/distribution).

f) Premio AMC Miglior Montaggio: AMC – Italian association of cinematographic and tv editing, will bestow the Best Editing Award to one documentary of the National Competition.


Documentary films of any length and nationality with particular attention to the themes of contemporary living in relation to the ecosystem, technological evolution and the transformations taking place in the geo-political field are eligible for selection. Priority will be given to Italian premieres.
In case of selection, the preferred screening format is DCP. Other formats must be agreed with the Festival Programming Office. 


a)  CG ENTERTAINMENT distribution award for Best Film:
The distribution company CG Entertainment ( offers the winning film the opportunity to be distributed on demand on the platform.


In regard to the other parallel sections (Out of Competition, Retrospectives and Tributes, Thematic Sections, Special Events), the Festival Management will invite films they deem appropriate for the Festival programme. 


“Diritti Umani” Award - Amnesty International Italia “Diritti Umani” prize is awarded by Amnesty International Italia to one of the films selected in the official selection of Festival dei Popoli.


a) Film submissions for the pre-selection involves the payment of a fee of 15.00 for each film, as reimbursement for secretarial expenses. Films will be considered for the pre-selection only if their payment is confirmed.

b) Every film must be submitted through the online registration procedure on the festival official website At the end of the registration process you will be asked to pay the registration fee via PayPal or via bank transfer. In case, any inquiry should be sent to: The registration and viewing link will be verified by the Programming Office. After the verification a confirmation email will be sent.

We remind you that: If a film is not selected the submission fee cannot be refunded. If a film submission is retracted, the submission fee cannot be refunded. If an entry fee is paid twice or more, the additional payments cannot be refunded. The title of the film must be indicated in the bank transfer. If not, the payment can not be correctly assigned to the film and the fee will not be refunded.

c) Deadlines for online registration are based on the film production date: 

  • April 21st, 2023 for every film produced before March 2023;
  • June 16th, 2023 for every film produced before May 2023
  • July 21st 2023, for every film produced after June the 1st  2023 (included) or still in progress (in this case we must receive a rough copy of the work in progress).
  • Late submissions: Late film submission can be accepted (limited to the days between July 22nd to 31st 2023) but involves the payment of a fee of 25.00.

d) Preview copy of the film should be sent as an online LINK with password protected access (downloadable Vimeo link is preferred). Please specify the url and the password in the entry form.


Expiration date of the link/password must be later than November, 2023.
Films submitted for pre-selection must have Italian or English subtitles.
Additional material will be required only in case of selection. 

f) Filmmakers and/or producers are solely responsible for the contents of their film and must declare, upon registration in the festival, to have fully complied with copyright laws.

g) Media Library Submission grants the possibility to include the selected films in the festival Media Library. This service has the sole purpose of promoting the film to professionals and festival guests (film producers, distributors, other festivals, press). Access to the Media Library is restricted to professionals only. 

h) Registration is subordinate to acceptance that all the materials received shall remain in the Festival Archives and that permission is granted to the Festival to use them for educational, research or promotional ends, including places and contexts other than the Festival, excluding commercial use. Finally, the Festival will act as a mediator between filmmakers/producers and distributors.


The selection of films, the general program and the calendar of screenings are the exclusive responsibility of the Festival Management. If a film is considered of interest by the Selection Committee, the production or the filmmaker will receive a pre-selection notification. 

In case of Selection, the Official Invitation - with indication to the section concerned - will be sent by email to the director or to the production of the film by the end of September 2023. The Official Selection will be announced at the press conference, which will take place in October 2023.
It is forbidden to communicate the selection of the film to third parties before the press conference, unless specifically indicated by e-mail from the Festival dei Popoli Press Office.

Candidates will be informed of the results of the selection starting from September the 25th, 2023.


In case of selection, materials must be sent as following: 

  • 1 file with the final editing of the film for the festival Media Library (the Programming Office of the Festival will provide the technical specifications for the file);
  • 1 trailer of the film, for promotional purposes (mov. or mp4);
  • film credits (indicate at least: premiere reserved for the festival, country and year of production, format and duration, language);  
  • film synopsis in Italian and/or English;
  • director’s statement concerning his/her intentions in shooting the film;
  • director’s biography in Italian and/or English (min 200 to max 400 characters, spaces included);
  • director’s filmography (full list of films and production dates); 
  • 1 photo of the filmmaker (1280x960 or 1024x768 pixels, proportion 4:3, format PNG o PG);
  • photographic documentation for the film with authorisation for publication and promotional dissemination (further specifications will be communicated by the Programming Office); 
  • complete and definitive list of dialogues and list of subtitles (if any) in one of the following languages: Italian, English, French, along with the timecode of the definitive screening copy (preferably in .srt format);
  • a downloadable screener corresponding to the final version of the DCP (low resolution SD, max size 1 GB) to be used as a reference in order to proceed with the translation and synchronization of the subtitles. Online screeners are also accepted, provided they are perfectly identical to the final DCP;
  • poster, press-book and postcards and any other useful material for promotional purposes (also in jpg and png format).


The selected films are screened in the original version with both English and Italian subtitles. The copy of the film with printed English subtitles must be provided by the production and the shipment will be at its charge. If available, Italian subtitles should also be made available to the Festival. If they have not yet been produced, the Festival takes charge of their production and, in this case, they remain the property of the company making them.


The producers and distributors of all the selected films commit to add the Festival dei Popoli logo on the final DCP copy (as well as on the final online viewing version) and to mention in their advertising material (poster, press kit, trailer, website, etc.) the selection of the film at the Festival dei Popoli, using the official logo that will be provided by the Festival. Under no circumstances may the official logo be modified without the Festival's authorization. 


a) The DCP screening copy of the film, along with a safety copy, must reach the festival office no later than October 20th, 2023 according to the instructions provided by the Festival Programming Office. 

b) Shipments made from non-European countries must include a customs invoice, a list of items, travel documents (indicating the number of reels, length of film in meters, titles and quantity of video supports for each film). At the same time, the sender must notify the Festival Office of the shipping by sending an email with the following information: title of the film, date and references of the shipment (AWB number). 

c) Shipping expenses and customs clearance for screening copies of the selected films must be covered by the sender. Shipping expenses and customs clearance for the return of the items will be covered by the Festival. Should a copy of the film be requested for another festival after the screening of the film or anytime during the Festival dei Popoli, shipping expenses and customs clearance must be covered by the interested party. In any case, the Festival dei Popoli will cover the costs of one shipment only. 

d) Should a filmmaker or producer decide to cancel his/her film from the Festival after the acceptance of the Official Invitation letter, he/she must pay a compensation fee of 3,000.00. 


The donation of a copy of the film to the Festival dei Popoli Archives is appreciated. The donated copy will be used for the purposes of study, conservation and dissemination of knowledge of documentary cinema, to the exclusion of all commercial uses.


The request to participate in the selection process implies acceptance of these Rules and Regulations, which are also available in English. In the event of problems of interpretation, only the Rules and Regulations in Italian shall be considered valid for all purposes. The Court of Florence shall have jurisdiction in any dispute.

17. COVID – 19

The Festival dei Popoli is closely monitoring the situation in regards to the coronavirus emergency (Covid-19). If any changes regarding the 63rd edition of Festival dei Popoli should occur according to government regulations, these will be communicated to participants in advance.

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