About us

The Bruges International Film Festival showcases innovative independent cinema by emerging artists from around the world. The festival provides a platform for films with a unique voice and message, regardless of how low the budget might be. Aiming to inspire, motivate and award new talent.

Focusing on the art of filmmaking rather than on the box office, the festival aims to introduce quality, non-mainstream films from global filmmakers as well as local talent. By recognizing the important role independent films have in the history of filmmaking, storytelling, and culture, the Bruges International Film Festival wants to help empower the next generation of artists.

Bruges International Film Festival takes pride in its astute selection process. It is known for discovering hidden gems that later go on to successfully thrive at A-list festivals, with some films even catching the eye of the Academy Awards. For its inaugural edition in 2021 for example, the festival selected and awarded 'Ala Kachuu – Take and Run', directed by Maria Brendle, which was nominated in 2022 for an Oscar in the Best Live Action Short Film category.

The second edition will take place in October 2022 at Kinepolis Brugge. We are pleased to announce that none other than Flemish stand-up comedian, actor and writer Piet De Praitere will introduce the screenings as the festival's host. Piet De Praitere found fame with his characters 'Etienne met het open verhemelte' and 'Dikke Gilbert de la Tourette'. He has worked alongside Kamagurka, Freddy De Vadder and Gunter Lamoot, and has appeared on Studio Brussel, Radio 1, Canvas, VT4, 2BE and VPRO. Just recently, a book with his best one-liners of the last 20 years was published, and De Praitere's first dvd 'Gekapt' hit the stores. The public has also gotten to know him from his roles in top Flemish tv series such as 'Bevergem', 'De Dag' and 'De Twaalf', and from his own programme 'Lookalikes' alongside Dries Heyneman. Piet hosted the first edition of the festival in his own special way, check out the video.

Bruges International Film Festival - Brugge Film Festival
Proud partner of The Bigger Screen

Bruges International Film Festival is a proud partner of The Bigger Screen, an organization that aims to make film as an art form more accessible and more inclusive. We support their different programs on both sides of the screen: behind the screen, encouraging and supporting filmmakers in their quest to spread their work through grants and opportunity, as well as in front of the screen, by welcoming audiences to enjoy this art form, no matter what their social or financial status is. A short overview:

 

Connecting Cultures Program: Each year, The Bigger Screen selects ten countries and grants filmmakers from those areas the ability to submit their work free of charge to partner festivals all over the world. This opens the door of film exposure to those who may not otherwise be able to enter. As we support inclusivity and shareable films, this program exemplifies our mission. 

Local Filmmakers Program: We understand that the cost of making a film can be taxing, so to encourage rising talent, we waive the festival submission fee to local talent. With numerous worldwide locations for festivals, this provides great opportunity for filmmakers around the world to enter the international film scene. This opportunity opens the world of film. Think global, act local, right?

Inclusive Audience Program: Our screenings are always low or even free of charge to provide opportunity for interested film goers to view up and coming, challenging, and inspiring pieces of art, encouraging students, seniors, and those in underprivileged environments to share the experience of film and cinema. We welcome film goers, regardless of income and financial status.

The Tarkovski Grant: All selected filmmakers will receive The Tarkovski Grant, a film festival submission fee waiver package with an average value of about $250. This not only saves you a lot of money, but it also recognizes your work as something to watch for during the selection procedure, making a selection with another partner film festival more likely - but of course, never guaranteed. The Tarkovski Grant supports hundreds of filmmakers each year in their challenging journeys as independent filmmakers, by promoting existing films, no matter the genre, style or length.

Previous editions

Find out all about the previous editions of the Bruges International Film Festival: