10th Annual

Byron Bay International Film Festival

June 24, 2016 to July 10, 2016

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PO Box 194

Byron Bay NSW 2481
Phone: 61266871797

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Dramatic Short Films
Great dramatic shorts are the backbone of our festival. We accept short films up to 30 minutes in length and we like variety. If you're not sure whether your short film might fit our festival take a look at the shorts we screened in our 2015 programme.
Dramatic Feature Films
We're looking for narrative films of all genres which are over 30 minutes. Films entered into this category which are over 70 minutes may also be eligible for nomination for our Best Dramatic Feature Award as well as with all films any other suitable awards such as Best Cinematography.
Documentary Short Films
We love a good doco and we've got very eclectic tastes. This category is for documentaries 30 minutes or under.
Documentary Feature Films
If your documentary has a longer story to tell with a running length over 30 minutes this is the category to enter.
There's nothing that can't be expressed through the medium of animation. We're enthusiastic about all forms of animation - 2D, 3D, Flash, Stop motion, Claymation, Traditional, Machinima and the rest.
Experimental Films
Artistic, surreal, invoking, abstract, poetic or just plain strange BBFF loves experimental films because they take the audience to places they never dreamed imaginable. It seems our audiences can't get enough either.
Surf Films
Surfing is a huge part of Byron's cultural identity and our surf film sessions are a highlight if the festival. We've screened surf films from 3 to 90 minutes and although we love great waves ideally we want longer surf films to have an added element to them - some kind of personal or cultural story that takes the films to another level.

In 2013 the surf film Otelo Burning not only won our Best Surf Film Award but also took home the festival's Best Dramatic Feature and Best Film Awards.
Environmental Films
It's very topical to think green but Byron's being putting green values first for the past 30 years. Byron Bay is the first and only area in Australia to have elected a Green Mayor, for years the town has kept out major franchises like MacDonalds and high rise buildings. Ironically this town which was built from whaling and logging has become a champion of marine conservation, protecting forests and threatened species.

Environmental films submitted can be any length and any genre, we want to hear what you have to say and we'll put your film in front of a passionate audience who'll care.
Music Videos
For decades Byron Bay has been home to some of Australia's hottest Music Festivals and musicians. Music, of every kind, plays an important and integral part of our local culture and so we created our Best Music Video Category in recognition of this.
Out of Competition - under 30 minutes
If your short film of any genre seems perfect for our festival but was screened before January 2013 this is the category to use. We screen an extremely limited amount of films out of competition and only those films which will have a strong appeal to our local audience. We recommend to avoid disappointment that filmmakers thinking of entering this 'out of competition' category read through our mission statement.
Young Australian Filmmaker
This category is where Australian Directors under the age of 25 should enter their films. The films entered in this category will automatically be considered for nomination for any other awards which the film might be suitable (ie: surf, music video or environmental).

While Australian Directors aged under 25 can enter their film into this category to receive discounted entry fees for the purpose of programming our 'Young Australian Filmmaker Nominees' Session only SHORT films under 20 minutes length will be considered for nomination for our Young Australian Filmmaker Award.
Byron Bay Filmmaker - Northern NSW Residents only
This category is open ONLY to filmmakers who LIVE in the Northern Rivers or the Tweed region of NSW Australia.
Out of Competition - over 30 minutes
If your film of any genre seems perfect for our festival but was screened before January 2013 this is the category to use. We screen an extremely limited amount of films out of competition and only those films which will have a strong appeal to our local audience. We recommend to avoid disappointment that filmmakers thinking of entering out of competition read through our mission statement.


An alternative lifestyle mecca, surfers' utopia, filmmakers' hub and millionaires' playground. Byron Bay's vibrant, artistic, freethinking community is a melting pot like no other.

The Byron Bay International Film Festival is an Australian Film Festival that screens a diverse programme of films, of ALL LENGTHS and ALL GENRES, many of which reflect the interests and values of our unique local community - maintaining a strong emphasis on social and environmental issues, human rights, diversity and multiculturalism, creativity, indigenous culture, spirit, healing, connecting to nature, conscious thinking and positive living, music of every variety, colourful characters, humour and, of course being Byron Bay, surfing.

BBFF is a platform for the world’s outstanding film talent, showcasing a uniquely rich and diverse program of entertaining, inspiring and
thought provoking films. It’s a festival that fuses artistry, education and innovation, enhancing our world-view and collective social dialogue through the power and storytelling of film.

BBFF provides a platform for independent filmmakers in all stages of their careers.

We believe in creating opportunities wherever possible and we aim to profile selected filmmakers and promote their films both before and after our festival. We bring the work of talented creatives to an appreciative and intelligent audience and our festival is supported by some of the heavyweights of the Australian Film Industry.

We encourage attending filmmakers to participate in Q &A's, Discussion Panels, Workshops and Networking Events.


BBFF2016 will be our 10th festival and will be our largest yet.

Byron Bay is said to have the highest concentration of filmmakers in Australia outside of a metropolitan area. The inaugural Byron Bay Film Festival was held in February 2006 and focused solely on Australian films and the back catalogue of our local filmmakers. Byron Bay is a magnet for people from all around the globe both passing through or making Byron their home and so it seemed fitting that BBFF should metamorphosis into an International Film Festival.

A highlight of the festival is our annual Full Moon Beachside Screening, not always held within the festival dates, which attracts 2000+ attendees and some very special guests.

With the community and media squarely behind us BBFF continues to grow each year. The festival now screens 200 films over ten days across 6 venues. BBFF is supported by many Australian distribution companies, TV buyers and film industry organizations that provide judges for us creating further opportunities for participating filmmakers. Filmmakers are shown hospitality at our Filmmakers Bar and a number of invitation only events. Overseas filmmakers attending BBFF2015 were treated to surfing lessons and a session on the flying trapeze.

BBFF’s success arises from its down-to-earth, relaxed, warm and inclusive vibe that allows a range of industry attendees at all stages of their careers to come along and just be themselves; mingle, spark ideas and collaborate. The festival champions new technology and provides an exceptional and growing industry program of workshops, and networking events with leading Australian and international
speakers and delegates.

Our selection panel has extremely diverse tastes, as does our local audience. Life in Byron Bay is about as ideal as it gets and so as well as bringing our audience films which resonate with their lives and interests we like to transport our audience away from their sub-tropical paradise and let them experience stories, people and places worlds away.

Although the bulk of our programming is aimed towards an adult audience we run family-friendly screenings as well as screenings for local schools and so we are always on the lookout for great family/children-friendly films to add to our Schools Sessions selection.

We have a number of awards to give away in numerous categories including but not limited to Best Film, Short Film, Drama, Documentary, Cinematography, Music Video, Experimental, Animation, Environmental & Surf Film. Prizes are available for some award winners as sponsors come on board.

No matter which category you enter through here at Withoutabox if your film is eligible for multiple awards we will automatically consider it for nomination for those when viewing your screeners.

BBFF is an AACTA accredited festival - creating opportunities for Australian Filmmakers to receive greater recognition through this important Australian event.

In Australia, and increasing world-wide, Byron Bay is renowned for our quality of life - a small yet cosmopolitan town with miles of white sandy beaches, clear blue sea and some of the best surf breaks in Australia, surrounded by lush sub-tropical rainforests and picturesque rolling countryside.

Originally a whaling town Byron Bay was first invaded by surfers and then soon after hippies who lingered on after the Aquarius Festival which was Australia's Woodstock. In the 80's some of the biggest names of Australian film bought property in and around the bay and A-list celebrities continue to buy property and holiday here. Byron is home to some of the biggest festivals in Australia including the East Coast Blues and Roots Festival, Splendour in the Grass and The Byron Bay Writer's Festival.


Osvaldo Alfaro (Technology Director); jaimee sv


Except for those films entered out of competition all films must not have screened before January 2013. Films previously submitted to BBFF are not eligible for re-submission.

Entries must be postmarked by the entry dates specified. A separate submission, disks and entry fee is required for each individual film's submission.

Please ensure you have filled out all sections of the entry form. If your film is selected. The synopsis you provide will be used in our promotional material.

Accepted filmmakers using WAB's Secure On-line Screener system must send in their films in the appropriate exhibition format without delay.

Providing us with a high resolution screener copy is preferable, if you are sending us some kind of physical screener (DVD, Bluray, USB key etc) we ask for 2 error-free Discs or Drives for viewing by the selection committee. Disc's when received will be quickly captured and quality checked. Due to the volume of submissions if both discs are found to be faulty the film submission will automatically be rejected with no refunds.

Unless accompanied by an Exhibition Format version of the film (such as a High Definition Blu-Ray copy, USB Thumb Drive, DVD ROM Disc with HD Media File or HDV Tape), any film provided on DVD Video disc will themselves be considered the Exhibition Format to be screened at the Film Festival. For this reason Screener Films should NOT have burnt-in time-code or watermark titles (excluding subtitles).

We love Vimeo, hopefully you do too - if you opt to send us a link to your film on vimeo (or elsewhere on the internet) please make sure you put that link in the withoutabox cover letter.

Out of fairness to other filmmakers BBFF only accepts films which are works in progress during our late & WAB Extended deadlines and do so only with prior permission from BBFF. We require that what is presented is a final edit with only colour grading, the credits or a final sound mix left undone as film duration is a major deciding factor. Again we stress that all filmmakers considering submitting a rough cut contact the festival directly first for prior approval.

The filmmaker is responsible for any transfers necessary to ensure their film is in one of the preferred formats.

Our method of screening is from a hard-drive based system capable of all resolutions up to 1080p High Definition and E-Cinema formats. Blu-Ray discs are by far the most preferred compatible medium we accept. Films on Portable Hard Drives, USB Drives, Media Files on DVD ROM's and DVD Video are also accepted. HD versions of your film on Vimeo are also acceptable.

As stated previously filmmakers are welcome to provide their film in an Exhibition Format either instead of, or along with, the 2 Screener DVD's.

DO NOT place colour bars, ID slates or long periods of black at the head (or tail) of films.

DO NOT place colour bars, ID slates or long periods of black at the head (or tail) of films. Yes we meant to put that in twice - it's very important that filmmakers understand that by including them you are creating a lot of extra work for our technical team.

Feature length films and Australian Premieres may be accepted for late submission after entries have closed subject to the number of entries already received and BBFF's programming needs.

For further queries regarding screener and/or exhibition formats email: formats@bbff.com.au

All efforts will be made to notify filmmakers by email of entry status by April 20th 2016.

While all entries are handled with care, BBFF is not responsible for any loss or damage.

Selected Filmmakers will receive 4 tickets for their films screening if their film is part of a mixed session. Further tickets for filmmakers whose films are screening singularly or with one other film or are premieres will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis.

All films, except those out of competition, selected for BBFF are in the running to be selected as nominees for awards in their appropriate categories as well as others such as Best Film, Cinematography etc.

BBFF does not pay the filmmakers. Our resources are invested in creating and promoting the optimum platform for your work.

Nominations will be announced before the festival.

More information is available at www.bbff.com.au or if you have any specific queries about entry or terms and conditions please email us at info@bbff.com.au.


By your signature below you represent and warrant that you have read, understood and agreed to be bound by the regulations of the festival as described below and in the BBFF Festival Rules, Regulations and Entry guidelines, and that to the best of your knowledge all statements in this document are true.

You understand that submission of your work authorizes BBFF to use the work for exhibition, education and/or publicity/promotional purposes related to the festival; this may include using short excerpts in our promotional trailer or if nominated for an award inclusion in a promotional DVD sent to potential sponsors.

In addition to screenings during the festival accepted filmmakers grant the Byron Bay International Film Festival the rights to exhibit the film in any subsequent tour, schools or 'Best of BBFF' highlights screenings.

When the time comes that you are ready to post your film online you will be willing to explore the possibility of including your work on any BBFF 'channels' which may be set up. Unless your film is already freely available on youtube the festival will never post your full work up online without your permission.

You understand that the Festival will handle the prints and tapes with a maximum of care but cannot be held liable for any damage or loss during shipping, preview, or screening. You understand that once accepted you cannot withdraw your film from screening and there is no screening fee paid to filmmakers.

By submitting your work to BBFF you attest that you have the authority to do so. You agree to hold BBFF harmless and without any liability for the statements you have made. You also assert that there are no assigned rights, agreements, distribution agreements, production deals or any arrangements whatsoever attached to this work that would in any way interfere with the showing or screening of this film to the public within the terms of the Byron Bay Film Festival and that the Festival is also not responsible for any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, or royalty infringement related to the work.

You agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless the Byron Bay International Film Festival, its board, judges, sponsors and partners, individually and collectively, from all claims and demands, losses, damages, costs and liabilities relating to any films submitted to this festival.