Open City Documentary Festival


Years running: 12 (since 2011)

Open City Documentary Festival

International Documentary Film Festival.


Celebrating the art of non-fiction, Open City Documentary Festival creates an open space in London to nurture and champion the art of creative documentary and non-fiction filmmakers. We aim to challenge and expand the idea of documentary in all its forms. We provide a platform for emerging talent as well as established masters working within the documentary form.

The festival takes place over seven days in venues across Central London, and consists of international contemporary and retrospective non-fiction film, audio and cross media, as well as filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, workshops, networking and parties.

The ninth edition of the festival will take place between 4th – 10th September 2019. Submissions for the 2019 festival are now open.


  • Documentary film (short, mid or feature length)
  • Short audio documentary
  • cross-platform project (VR/AR+)


  • Prizes are awarded in three categories:

    Open City Award 
    Best Emerging International Filmmaker Award 
    Best UK Short Award

  • Winners of the feature prizes are awarded a £750 cash prize,


1. Open City Documentary Festival (OCDF) screening programmes are curated and all submissions will be fully considered by the Programming Team.
2. OCDF accepts documentary films of all lengths and subject matter, originating from anywhere in the world. OCDF accepts audio documentaries up to 10 minutes in length. 
3. OCDF only accepts submission of documentary films, cross-platform projects and audio works completed after 1 January 2021. 
4. All entries must be in English or contain English subtitles. Non-English entries submitted without subtitles, or supplementary printed translations, will be automatically disqualified.
5. Only completed entries (Entry Form, Preview Screener, Payment) will be processed and considered for screening. 

6. Each submission must be accompanied by the appropriate Entry Fee. Entry Fees are not refundable. Projects submitted with the incorrect entry fee will not be considered for selection. 
7. OCDF accepts FilmFreeway and Vimeo Secure Online Screeners for preview purposes. Whilst we can also accept DVDs, this must be additional to an online screener. For audio documentaries, please include an online link. For cross-platform projects, please include an online screener if possible or a downloadable project file if possible. . 

Premiere Requirements

No premiere requirement



United Kingdom

Official Website



Open City Docs Room 313 Student Central
2 Malet Place
London WC1E 7HY
United Kingdom


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Dates & Deadlines
  • Opening Date
    September 27, 2021
  • Earlybird Deadline
    January 14, 2022
  • Regular Deadline
    April 22, 2022
  • Late Deadline
    May 13, 2022
  • Notifications
    August 01, 2022
  • Event Dates
    7 — 13 September 2022
Categories & Fees

Discounts for students.

  • Earlybird Deadline — $16
  • Regular Deadline — $23
  • Late Deadline — $27

Discounts for students.

  • Earlybird Deadline — $27
  • Regular Deadline — $34
  • Late Deadline — $47
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