Documentaries Without Borders International Film Festival is not in any way affiliated with Doctors Without Borders.
Doctors Without Borders is a registered trademark of Bureau International De Médecins Sans Frontiéres. 

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Stand UP, Speak OUT - Reproductive Rights: Know Your Rights
Director Elisabeth Harris
in Documentary
United States

Summer 2023

"Freedom on Fire"
Ukraine's fight for Freedom"
Evgeny Afineevsky: Director


"Climate Emergency: Feedback Loops"
Science Category"

Directed by Susan Gray


As a dedicated Documentary filmmaker, you have an important message:  Deliver it to the people that matter!   Other fests claim to “invite” distributors to a venue: We Deliver Them To You Directly, Guaranteed.

DWBIFF is a festival dedicated to DOCUMENTARIES and DOCU-DRAMAS ONLY (we are one of the few festivals with a separate category for Docu-dramas).

-Guaranteed distributor review by World Wide Motion Pictures Corporation (WWMPC.COM) for features, and Adler & Associates for shorts and features, Cardinal XD and CCS Releasing,  AT NO EXTRA COST TO YOU, for our select few "Best Of Festival"  winners in the 19 Major categories, based on sufficient qualified entries.  For this FREE service, DWBIFF requires NO CONTRACTS to be signed.
We don't have any control or influence over Polaris Pictures or any of our associate distributors deciding to offer you a production deal or even answering your email. We merely open the door for the top winners.

-No need to "hope" that a distributor will see your film at a festival venue: We guarantee top winners will be reviewed by our distribution associates.

- VIDEO PLAY OPTION:  DWBFF, in conjunction with WRPN.TV Entertainment Network, may also offer a unique opportunity to show your film to a world-wide community of video fans from dozens of countries that filmmakers would not normally have access.

-FREE Earlybird entry of any rejected film, into DWBIFF’s next competition, upon completion of the suggested corrections outlined in your rejection letter.

-Reduced rates for ALL STUDENT FILM ENTRIES IN THE 19 MAJOR CATEGORIES regardless of deadline status (proof required of student status at time of filming: no refunds if your ID is not legitimate).

-Reduced rates for sub-category submissions (cinematography, editing, original score, research, etc.). Winning an award in a subcategory does NOT qualify for screening and sending to our distributors.

-Unique Documentary Category distinctions:  Environmental, Human Spirit, Social Issues, Wildlife, Docu-drama shorts, and Docu-drama features, and many others.

-Rejected films also have the opportunity for Feedback: The one element most festivals ignore.       
Instead of paying submission fees and getting nothing in return, EVERYONE who submits to DWBIFF will receive one of two benefits: Either 1): your film is already competition calibre, and gets accepted as an Official Selection, OR 2): you’ll receive a letter outlining exactly what is keeping it from being accepted.  If you can make corrections, you resubmit for FREE.
While most festivals never give any explanation at all for a rejection, we strive to help filmmakers improve their festival acceptance rates and therefore, their marketability.

DWBIFF is run as a web-based competition, instead of a traditional film festival: 100% of our effort and investment goes into finding a market for you, not into renting theatres unless it is dictated by the distributors to further test the market.  New distribution company connections are actively petitioned.

       Finally, you can rest assured that our (DWBIFF's) founders are  registered Committee Members for the Universal Film & Festival Organization (UFFO.ORG).  The UFFO is a non-profit operating out of the U.K., which exists for "Promoting best business practices for film festivals.”  This guarantees that your film will benefit from a fair and thorough judging process.

DWBIFF, in cooperation with our distribution colleagues, is proud to offer guaranteed distributor review to the top winners in the 19 major categories at the Best of Festival award level*:
We don't have any control or influence over Polaris Pictures or any of our associate distributors deciding to offer you a production deal or even answering your email. We merely open the door for the top winners.

*(Please note: If there is insufficient competition within any particular category, DOFIFF reserves the right to withdraw a "Best Of" presentation in that particular category.)

Other award levels include:
"Best of Show"
"Award Of Outstanding Excellence"
"Award Of Excellence"
"Award Of Exceptional Merit"
"Award Of Merit"
"Kudos Endeavor Award"

Sub-category awards are available for cinematography, research, original concept, editing, viewer impact, and many others.  

DWBIFF is hereby granted the right to utilize an excerpt from any film submitted and accepted for competition at the Festival for promotional purposes.

Only films submitted into one of the 19 Major categories are eligible for distributor review (films submitted for judging in reduced-rate, production value sub-categories only, will not be eligible).

In order to ensure that each film is studied and rated on an individual basis, DWBIFF has instituted a system to ensure that entries do not compete against each other, but instead are recognized for their own individual merits. For all intents and purposes, they compete against themselves: each entry is judged on individual merits and scored on an inherent value system. We want to ensure that the judges’ focus is on you when it is your turn to be evaluated, not on all the other films that are in cue: this ensures that they will not have comparisons going on in their minds when they should be focusing entirely on YOU.

On-Demand video play on WRPN.TV is completely OPTIONAL.

Submitting your film to DWBIFF automatically puts you on our mailing list, to receive emails from DWBIFF and WRPN.TV, so that you will be informed of developments regarding the status of your film. This mailing list is private and will not be shared with any third parties. You may unsubscribe at any time at the risk of missing pertinent information regarding your film.

The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations.

The Competition reserves the right to refuse entries, and there are no waivers.

DVD's will not be returned.

Submissions in other than English must be subtitled, dubbed or include an English transcript.

If there is insufficient competition within any particular category, DWBIFF reserves the right to withdraw a "Best Of" presentation in that particular category.

Filmmakers who enter only discounted sub-categories, but no major categories, are not eligible for "Best Of Show" or "Best of festival" award level.

Judges score entries on a performance scale and winning entries are recognized and awarded not only for Best of festival but also Best Of Show,  two Awards of Excellence levels, two Awards of Merit levels, a Kudos Endeavor Award, or no award.
Best of Festival honors are granted to the top scoring entry/entries for each season; Awards of Best of Show and Excellence are granted to entries with truly exceptional artistic and technical achievements; and notable achievements are recognized at the Award of Merit and 'Kudos' award levels.

The number of awards granted at any given level will fluctuate based on the total number of entries received for each competition deadline.  Just as entering major categories does not insure selection or award, entering sub-categories also does not insure selection or award; Filmmakers who enter sub-categories only (without entering a major category) may be rejected if the judges do not feel the submitted sub-category is of merit, even if the film itself is of merit and could have been award-worthy.  Conversely, films may also receive awards for sub-categories written in by the judges even if the filmmaker did not submit for them.

The submitter shall indemnify and hold harmless DOCS WITHOUT BORDERS FILM FESTIVAL, WRPN.TV, and ROMAN PICTURES from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.

Dates & Deadlines

September 15, 2023
Opening Date
September 30, 2023
Earlybird Deadline
October 31, 2023
Regular Deadline
November 30, 2023
Late Deadline
December 31, 2023
Extended Deadline
March 31, 2024
Last Chance
April 14, 2024
Notification Date