Ottawa International Animation Festival 2017

Publish Date: Mar 31, 2017

Deadline: May 26, 2017


From September 20-24, 2017 downtown Ottawa will once again be the stage where you can enjoy the world's most cutting-edge, thoughtful, funny and provocative animation films while mingling with many of animation's most celebrated stars, studios and characters.

Whether you love classic cartoons, mind-bending experiments, fantastic digital creations, dazzling effects, technical fireworks, thought provoking observations, or pure gut-busting fun, there is something for everyone and anyone at the Ottawa International Animation Festival (OlAF).

For 41 years, the OlAF has attracted film and animation buffs, art lovers and filmmakers from around the globe. You won't want to miss this year's exciting line-up of screenings, workshops, panels and parties taking place at the ByTowne Cinema, National Gallery of Canada, Arts Court, Saint Brigid's Centre for the Arts, and the Chateau Laurier. 


To submit your film, just log in on the left and select "Entry Form" from the User Menu on the official website. 

QUALIFICATION FOR ENTRIES: Only works completed after May 27, 2016 will be accepted.

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS: Works submitted for selection can be presented as a URL link to a streaming video source. No downloads. The link must be available until the end of July. DVDs are no longer accepted.  

OFFICIAL LANGUAGES: The official languages of the Festival are English and French. The Festival requires all submissions to include English subtitles where applicable.

REGISTRATION AND DATES: No registration fee is required. The entry form and final preview URL must be submitted online by 11:59 PM (Eastern Standard Time) on May 26, 2017. The entrant must include the director's biography, director’s photo (300 dpi) a minimum of 3 stills (300 dpi) and a trailer from the film where applicable. These files can be uploaded online, submitted on disc or emailed:

DEADLINE FOR RECEIPT OF FILMS FOR SELECTION: Copies of works submitted for selection must reach the festival office on or before May 26, 2017. Works arriving after this date will not be accepted. Blank entries or incomplete URL links will not be considered.


Suite 120, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa, Ontario  K1N 6E2  Canada

NOTE: We cannot accept customs fees. Do not list a value higher than $10.00 CDN on your entry package.

SELECTION: Each entry is considered for the Official Competition and the out-of-competition Panorama screenings. The Festival Selection team will choose the films to be screened in competition and panorama. Works will be judged within their category for conceptual, technical and aesthetic innovation and excellence.

NOTE: The OIAF Festival Selection team reserves the right to switch a film's category if they feel the film is more suited for another category.


REQUIREMENTS: Directors or Producers must provide high-definition digital video files (H264 or ProRes .mov files only) without leaders. Directors or Producers of films selected for Official Competition have the option of sending a DCP copy as long as an .mov file is also provided.

The Festival also requires a Director bio, photo (300 dpi), three (3) CMYK 300 dpi film stills, and a link to the film trailer where applicable.NOTE: The Festival does not accept 35mm, BetacamSP or any other tape format as a screening copy. If the Festival Office does not receive the required film or video screening copy in the proper format on or before August 4, 2017, the selected work will be withdrawn from the competition or panorama program.


NOTE: The screening copy must have either an English dialogue track or have English subtitles. The entrant or producer must also provide an adequate supply of stills and documents to allow the festival to promote the film properly. 

FEATURE FILMS: By submitting your film to the selection process you agree to accepting screening fees no greater than those outlined in the IMAA Fee Schedule ($253 CAD for the first screening and $126 CAD per screening thereafter). If selected for competition the Festival cannot pay fees higher than the above amounts.

TRANSPORTATION AND INSURANCE: The Primary Contact is responsible for the transport costs, insurance charges and customs fees incurred when shipping material to the Festival. The Festival is responsible for the costs incurred with the return of material to the Primary Contact. However, due to budgetary limitations, the material will be shipped via SURFACE MAIL. Filmmakers requesting the return of materials via courier must incur the cost themselves.

No entered material can be returned or loaned during the festival. Any filmmaker requiring his or her work for private use during the festival is asked to bring a separate copy. The Festival will be responsible for storage and insurance costs of the prints only between the time prints are taken into care and the time they are handed to the carrier. In case of loss or damage to a print, the obligation of the festival is limited to the replacement value.

COMPOSITION OF PROGRAMMES FOR OFFICIAL COMPETITION: The OIAF Festival Selection team will define the order and composition of the programs presented in the Official Competition and the overall program schedule. Short programs submitted on digital formats will be duplicated onto Competition-specific compilations for screening purposes only, and will not be made available beyond such purposes. 

INVITATIONS: Invitations are given to filmmakers with films in competition. The invitation, intended solely for the use of the film's director, includes accommodation for the span of the event. If a film is made by several directors, only one of the directors will be entitled to complimentary accommodations. The invitation is not transferable under any circumstances.

ARTIST RENUMERATION: Screening fees for non-commissioned, independent works shown in Competition or Panorama are paid in Canadian dollars according to length as follows: 0-5 mins receive $68; 5-15 mins receive $100; 15-30 mins receive $135; 30-60 mins receive $168; 60+ mins receive $202. Unfortunately, commissioned works do not qualify for artist fee payments. We reserve the right to screen films in Competition and Panorama three times (one Gala, two repeats) during the Festival, with a possible fourth screening if the film is selected as an award winner or Jury Prize. We cannot pay additional fees to distributors. Films in the Commissioned category do not receive a screening fee. One director from each film in Competition will receive complimentary accommodations for their own use for the span of the Festival. All directors in Competition and Panorama will receive a complimentary pass for their own use.

COMPETITION JURIES: The Festival will have three juries: one international jury for the feature; one for school, independent, student and commissioned competitions; and one Children’s Jury comprised of 6-13 year olds to judge the Kid’s Competition finalists. All members of the international juries will be closely connected with the art of animation. The jury members will elect a president at their first meeting. Productions produced or directed by members of the juries are not eligible for entry in the categories of the Official Competition. The decisions of the juries are final.

FESTIVAL PRIZES: The juries will present the following awards:

Grand Prizes

  • GRAND PRIZE for Best Animated Feature
  • GRAND PRIZE for Best Short Animation 

Category Prizes

  • PRIZE for Best Narrative Short Animation
  • PRIZE for Best Non-Narrative Animation
  • PRIZE for Best Student Animation
  • PRIZE for Best Canadian Student Animation
  • PRIZE for Best Commissioned Animation
  • PRIZE for Best Preschool Short Animation Made for Children
  • PRIZE for Best Short Animation Made for Children 6-12
  • PRIZE for Best Preschool Animation Series Made for Children
  • PRIZE for Best Animation Series Made for Children 6-12

Craft Prizes

  • PRIZE for Best Script
  • PRIZE for Best Animation Technique
  • PRIZE for Best Use of Sound
  • PRIZE for Best Design

Other Prizes

  • Canadian Film Institute (CFI) Award for Best Canadian Animation
  • Film Critic's Prize

A prize will be awarded to the best entry in each of the Competition Categories. The juries, at their discretion, may also award additional special prizes. 

NOTE: The juries have the right to withhold an award in any category where no entries, in the Jury’s view, meet its standards for recognition.

MENTIONS: The producers and directors of award-winning films at OIAF should mention the prize obtained, the year and the name of OIAF in the credits of their film and on all related documentation.

PROMOTIONAL USE OF WORKS: By accepting these terms the entrant grants the Festival the right to show, for publicity purposes only, up to 10% of the running time of the production to a maximum of three minutes free of charge and for a period of one year from the entry date. Any other proposed use outside of the Festival will be referred by the Festival to the Primary Contact for direct negotiation..

ACCEPTANCE OF REGULATIONS: By agreeing to and submitting the entry form for the Ottawa 2017 International Animation Festival, the participant accepts, without reservation, the terms of the present regulations as stated in this document.

Submission: When deciding how to submit your film, choose the category that best describes your film's production environment, distribution method and/or purpose:

A - Feature Film
Animated Feature: Animated film over 45 minutes in length.

B - Independent Short Films Competition
Short-format, non-commissioned animated films or videos. Suggested maximum length of 30 minutes.

Narrative Short: Structured with some sort of narrative or story. (ie. "something happens")

Non-Narrative: Structured without a clear narrative or cause-effect plotline.
*Note: 'Non-narrative' does not mean 'dialogue-free'. Dialogue, i.e. narration, is fine.
C - Student Animation Competition
Films made by students who are either currently enrolled in a high school, post-secondary or graduate diploma or degree or were so enrolled during the films’ production. 

D- Commissioned Films Competition
Works that are funded and produced for specific commercial or promotional purposes.
Commissioned Animation: Includes but not limited to commercials, title sequences, station/program identification spots, music videos, and animation series made for adults. Please note only one episode per series is eligible and is limited to 22 minutes and under.
E - Films/Videos Made for Children
Works that are produced and distributed specifically for children and youth demographics.
Short Preschool Animation Made for Children: Any non-feature animated film (under 30 minutes) that is aimed specifically at young audiences aged 0-5.
Short Animation Made for Children 6-12: Any non-feature animated film (under 30 minutes) that is aimed specifically at young audiences aged 6-12.
Preschool Animation Series Made for Children: Any special or series (22 minutes and under) created specifically for a young audience aged 0-5. Only one episode per series is eligible.
Animation Series Made for Children 6-12: Any special or series (22 minutes and under) created specifically for a young audience aged 6-12. Only one episode per series is eligible.
For more information please click "Further Official Information" below.

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