IOM Launches Call for Submissions to 2018 Global Migration Film Festival

27 April 2018

IOM, the UN Migration Agency, started casting a wide net  to bring forth the talent behind one of the migration world’s enduring art forms: motion pictures. It’s all part of the UN Together campaign to promote diversity worldwide.

To select a compelling roster of films to be screened at IOM’s December 2018 Global Migration Film Festival (GMFF), the Geneva-based body is calling for submissions of Full-Length Feature and Short Films, in all genres: fiction, documentary, animation, etc.

Submissions will be accepted through 21 June. To merit consideration each submission must address the challenges and promises of migration as well as the many and unique contributions migrants make to their new communities. Both established and emerging filmmakers are invited to participate.

Before submitting, we encourage filmmakers to post a short video or pitch to the brand new TOGETHER app which you can find in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Using the app, you can communicate with other filmmakers and collaborate on projects around the world.

A committee of international professionals will determine the Official Selection across two categories as follows:

  • Full-length features: filmmakers working in all genres are invited to submit films that address festival themes, with a total running time exceeding 41 minutes.
  • Short Films: filmmakers working in all genres are invited to submit films that address festival themes, with a total running time of up to 40 minutes. 

Only films submitted through the festival’s designated platform, FilmFreeway, will be considered. 

Over the years, films have informed, entertained, educated and provoked debate. It is in this spirit that IOM launched The Global Migration Film Festival in 2016. Last year the Festival was present in 100 countries; an Official Selection of 39 films led to 345 screenings in 100 countries around the world, drawing a global audience of over 27,000 people.

“The journeys migrants take, sometimes full of peril, often full of hope, have been the subject of films throughout the history of cinema,” said IOM Director General William Lacy Swing. “We hope the films at our next festival will instill understanding, empathy with characters, awe at their journeys and admiration for those who welcome their new neighbors.” 

All selected films are also eligible to win awards, including the Innovation Award for films made solely with mobile phones.

Amina Rwimo, a refugee filmmaker living at Kakuma Refugee Camp, won an Emerging Filmmakers award in 2017.  "This award will be a stepping stone towards many more opportunities," she said.

Post-screening debates and panels are encouraged, and GMFF organizers in each participating country may organize their own side events, prize giveaways and more. Click here to access to the official Global Migration Film Festival (GMFF) portal.

For more information, please contact Amanda Nero at IOM HQ at Tel: +41 227 179 482, Email: