22nd Annual

Vancouver Asian Film Festival

November 01, 2018 to November 04, 2018

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Film Market
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1350 Burrard Street, Suite 367
Vancouver BC V6Z 0C2
Phone: 604 251 6828

OPEN CALL FOR ENTRIES • Select a Category of Entry to continue.

Narrative Feature
All Narrative films accepted, including experimental films.
Narrative Short
All Narrative Short films accepted, including experimental films.
Documentary Feature
All Documentaries accepted.
Documentary Short
All Documentaries accepted.
All Animation films accepted.
Web Short/ Series
All web shorts/series episodes accepted except for commercial videos, advertisements, previously broadcast television, music videos and trailers.


VAFF is dedicated to promoting and celebrating the diversity and depth of Asian culture and identity in film and media, and to help North American Asian actors and filmmakers more authentically and more powerfully define and express themselves on screen.

Through its annual film festival and many other programs and events hosted in Vancouver, VAFF’s mission is to be the “go-to” forum for the public and the film industry to engage in and support the rise of Asian influence in film and media in the world. VAFF envisions a world where North American Asian actors and filmmakers have the resources and opportunities to shape mainstream culture in a powerful and positive way.


VAFF is the longest running pan-Asian diaspora film festival in Canada. It was founded in 1995 and debuted in September 1997. Since then, tens of thousands of film lovers have experienced a diverse selection of Asian North American and international films, in English and in other languages.

VAFF enters its 22nd year of continuous programming in 2018. Each year VAFF attracts close to 4,000 audience members over its four-day festival and year-round events. It also reaches many more through word of mouth, pre-festival events, and traditional and social media throughout the year.

VAFF is a not-for-profit film festival society committed to supporting both emerging talents and established filmmakers, offering programming reflective of the Asian diaspora experience. VAFF offers unique perspectives on storytelling from diverse filmmakers, to diverse audience members, achieving our goal: to celebrate diversity in film.

The festival is entirely organized and produced by a group of dedicated volunteers, and is made possible by generous financial support from corporate sponsors, public funders and private donors.

Being the platform where a number of successful Asian filmmakers first showcased their work, VAFF’s visiting artists have included Justin Lin (Fast & Furious), Quentin Lee (White Frog), Benson Lee (Seoul Searching), Evan Jackson Leong (Linsanity), Jessica Yu (Grey’s Anatomy), Tze Chun (Gotham), and Freida Lee Mock (Return with Honor), as well as Canadian filmmakers Julia Kwan (Everything Will Be), Mina Shum (Meditation Park), Ann Marie Fleming (Window Horses), Ben Lu (Blood and Water), Phil Planta (Beyond Redemption), and Jeff Chiba Stearns (Mixed Match). Attending performers have included Edison Chen (Infernal Affairs), Tzi Ma (Arrival), Anastasia Lin (Miss World Canada 2015), Agam Darshi (Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency), Sarita Choudhury (Hunger Games franchise), and Rizwan Manji (The Dictator).

Available awards include a juried award for Best Canadian Short, presented by the Telefilm Canada; a juried award for Best Canadian Feature, presented by the Directors’ Guild of Canada—British Columbia; audience-voted People’s Choice Awards for best Overall Feature, Overall Short, Overall Performance; and a curated award for Outstanding Contribution: Diversity in Film, to an Asian North American creative industry professional with a significant body of work or advocacy.

Programming includes 10-13 film programs incorporating feature length and short films and videos (dramatic narrative, documentary, animation and web series) featuring an Artist/Concept Spotlight, International Spotlight, International and Canadian Shorts, Q & A sessions, an industry series including panel discussions and networking, and gala events.

All screenings for the VAFF22 four-day festival in November 2018 will take place at the Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinemas, a multiplex theatre within downtown Vancouver's historic Chinatown and Gastown districts.


Kathy Leung (Festival Registrar); Lynne Lee (Festival Director); Robin Chan (Filmmaker Liaison); Vincent Wong (Marketing Director)


- Open Call submissions received after May 31, 2018, will not be considered for the 2018 festival (unless deadline officially extended by VAFF). NO EXCEPTIONS.

Press Kit Materials
- Your submitted press kit should have all files labeled descriptively, and should contain:
o A film synopsis (approximately 100 words) and logline;
o Film stills (photos or hi-resolution electronic images: minimum 1200-1800 pixels @ 300 dpi) for program guide and publicity;
o An above-the-line cast and crew list;
o Director(s) biography (80 words each) and photo(s) (see above for technical specs);
o Press/publicity clippings and list of awards and screenings (Word or PDF)
o Official website URL; social media URLs/handles

Notification of Festival Selections
- You will be notified of festival selections on or around September 15, 2018.
- If selected, a Notice of Acceptance (NOA) including a request for press kit information and festival attendance RSVP will be sent to you.
- The Notice of Acceptance must be completed, signed and returned by the deadline date listed, or your position in the festival may be offered to another film.

Exhibition Screeners: Digital Files
- Send digital file download link to printtraffic@vaff.org

Exhibition Screeners: Hard Copy Shipping Policy and Guidelines
- VAFF pays for outbound OR inbound shipping, not both. VAFF normally receives exhibition prints with shipping prepaid, and pays for outbound shipping back to print source or forwarding festival.
- Ship exhibition prints (Blu-Ray or DCP) to the VAFF Print Traffic address, to arrive no later than October 15, 2018.
- If exhibition prints/files are coming from other festivals, VAFF must receive print traffic contact information of the prior festival two weeks prior to VAFF start date.
- If VAFF is to send the exhibition print/file to another film festival, this outbound address must be given to VAFF one week prior to the start of VAFF or it will be sent back to the print source.

- Please mail or courier your exhibition print/file to:
Print Traffic Coordinator
Vancouver Asian Film Festival
1178 W. Pender Street
Vancouver, BC, V6E 2R9

- The filmmaker is responsible for providing any required paperwork for the shipping of his/her films, particularly those coming from outside of Canada.
- VAFF does not insure the films during the festival or during shipping; this is the filmmaker's responsibility. VAFF takes no responsibility for loss or damage to films in transit.
- Do not send the original, or your only copy, of your film/video.
- If shipping a disc or hard drive/thumb drive, use bubble wrap envelopes or stiff cardboard backing rather than fiber-filled packages or envelopes.
- Please ensure the file/print is playable before sending to VAFF. Please also include any relevant screening notes with your film, if possible.
- Please label your films as: "For cultural and educational purposes only."
- If the film is coming from outside of Canada, please identify on the package that it is a temporary importation and that the films will be returned to the original country.
- If your film is being shipped from outside of Canada and you are declaring the value of your film as above CAD $20, this may delay your film at Canada customs, so please send it two weeks earlier than planned.
- VAFF NORMALLY PAYS FOR ONLY THE RETURN OR OUTBOUND* SHIPPING COSTS OF THE SCREENING FILM/VIDEO. INBOUND SHIPPING CHARGES WILL BE COVERED BY PRINT SOURCE OR OTHER FILM FESTIVALS. *If by special arrangement VAFF pays for inbound shipping, the outbound shipping cost must be covered by the print source or the forwarding contact/festival.
- Always use a tracking number, regardless of whether the film is sent by post office or courier*. *If you are sending by a courier, we recommend using FedEx. Many filmmakers have encountered border delay issues and poor or lack of communication with UPS.
- Any costs incurred by VAFF as a result of the filmmaker not following the provided shipping guidelines may result in charges to the filmmaker to recover these costs.

- Programming/Curation: programming@vaff.org
- Submissions: submissions@vaff.org
- Notice of Acceptance (NOA) and Print Traffic (contact only after August 1, 2018): printtraffic@vaff.org
- Festival Attendance/Liaison (contact only after September 15, 2018): filmmaker@vaff.org


The applicant must hold the necessary rights for the submission and exhibition of this work. The applicant agrees that if his/her title is selected, that any photographs and/or video submitted to VAFF may be used by the festival or a third party authorized by the festival for the purpose promoting the festival (online, in print and media).

OPEN CALL SUBMISSION/ENTRY FEES: VAFF does not waive entry fees for Open Call Submissions.

RENTAL/SCREENING/DISTRIBUTION FEES: As a not-for-profit, VAFF does not normally pay these fees but instead invests resources in providing the best possible showcase for your work, and promoting your work as widely as possible.

ARTIST FEES: In fulfillment of its mandate, VAFF is provided with a small amount of public funding for artist fees to independent Asian Canadian artists only.