A feature length (over 50 minutes) cinematic experience with a majority production credit in the Baltic sea region (Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Sweden). That’s it. No more restrictions. Other than that you may be making a documentary, fiction, animation or anything in between and beyond.

RIGA IFF looks for innovative cinematic language within the confounds of the region, a strong sense of individuality, yet the festival also praises the team effort behind film-making. Thus the RIGA IFF Award is an 8-piece sculpture that is presented to the director who in turn is able to literally share it amongst the team. The award designed in collaboration with the artist Ervins Broks is annually produced in bronze.

The awards are presented at the Closing Event which takes place on the second Saturday of the festival.

The submissions to the competition are evaluated to select around 8-9 titles by the festival’s team of curators. The programme is then being presented during the festival to an international jury of experts, theoreticians, film-makers and members of the festival circle.

It is required for the submitted film to have been completed after August 1, 2016 and to not have been premiered in Latvia until the festival (with the exception of Latvian films – for these a national premiere in the festival is welcomed, but not mandatory).

Submissions are now closed the results will be announced on our website in July, 2017.
Next open call – March, 2018.


Animation, fiction, documentary or an experiment – SHORT RIGA searches for the auteur and for individuality in short format cinema. Only around 20 most interesting submissions from around the world are selected for the competition by the festival’s curators and programmed into comprehensive sections. At the end of the festival international jury of experts present various awards to the works that spark most conversation and excitement about the very fabric of cinema.

International premieres are not mandatory but are certainly welcome. Latvian premieres – definitely!

Submissions are now closed the results will be announced on our website in July, 2017.
Next open call – March, 2018.


The #BMV strives to show that the music video is a powerful short format all on its own, that it too can be a piece of art in addition or even independently from serving as a “TV commercial” for the music. The curators look for videos that challenge the audience and push the borders of the format, content and art direction.

The curated programme is being screened during a screening on the last Friday of the RIGA IFF that is designed as a meeting platform of the video-makers, music-makers, curators, the international jury of the competition as well as the audience.

The submitted video must be produced within the Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia or Lithuania), and by the end of the open call deadline has to be not older than a year. The festival welcomes premiering of a music video within the competition.


The competition is set to search for fresh and daring short films, whilst scouting for young talent that are eager to learn, practice, get inspired and expand their creative horizons.

Each year 8-10 young film-makers – students and recent graduates from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – are invited to the festival to present their short films to a panel of international experts that provide an in-depth analysis of their work, thus the competition take-away is valuable feedback from both industry professionals and peers. The festival also features an intensive programme of talent development seminars, meetings with members of the European film industry, group discussions and panel talks as well as numerous networking events.

Submissions are now closed the results will be announced on our website in July, 2017.
Next open call – March, 2018.