top of page
  • dgeneratefilms

Reel Asian Film Festival Call for Submissions



Reel Asian is Canada’s largest and longest-running showcase dedicated to contemporary Asian cinema and media arts from Asia, North America and all over the world. Annually, the festival attracts thousands of attendees to eight exciting days of screenings, industry events and galas.

Applicants whose work has been selected will be notified by mid September. The programming line-up will be officially announced at the festival press launch in mid-October. Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival’s 16th Annual Edition will take place on November 6-11 (Toronto) and November 16-17 (Richmond Hill).


We welcome new film and video submissions by and/or about East/Southeast Asians from around the world, including North America.


We encourage submissions that are independently produced with an East/Southeast Asian/Asian North American in a key creative role. (Reel Asian defines East and Southeast Asia to include the following countries: Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, North Korea, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.)

We welcome films and videos of all genres, including but not limited to: narrative, documentary, short, animation, experimental, etc. Incomplete applications will not be considered.



3) SUPPORT MATERIALS (in addition to printed and signed application form)

A DVD preview copy must be received post-marked by the deadline to be considered for the 2012 festival. Do not send masters or irreplaceable material. Submission DVDs must be playable on standalone DVD players. Please label each item clearly with title, director’s name, running time, year, and contact information. Previews will not be returned. Please help us minimize waste by sending previews in a paper sleeve. Do not send unnecessary printed material.


Send all support material to:

PROGRAMMING Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival 401 Richmond Street West, Suite 309. Toronto, Ontario M5V 3A8 Canada

For international packages: The customs declaration should clearly state the preview video has no commercial value, is for temporary consideration and for cultural use only. Reel Asian will not cover the resulting customs and duties charges, and will refuse the package. Do not send entries in a fibre-filled envelope as viewing equipment can be damaged.


Applicants will not receive a confirmation that their submission was received. Selected applicants will be notified of their acceptance by mid September. The programming line-up with presentation dates and times will be officially announced at the festival press launch in mid-October.


Selected applicants must provide a 35mm print, Digi Beta, or BetacamSP. DVD is not an acceptable exhibition format. Reel Asian is not responsible for transfer cost for the appropriate exhibition format.

The participant agrees to pay print shipping costs to the festival. The festival will pay the return shipping cost (one way). Shipping information (such as where/when the tape/print is coming and going to) must be settled upon confirmation of participation. The exhibition tape/print must arrive at the festival one month prior to the festival.


Reel Asian is committed to paying artist fees to directors in selection and follows standard rates set by the Independent Media Arts Alliance. Artist fees will be paid post-festival.


Q: Do you accept student submissions? A: Yes, we encourage submissions from students and first-time directors. We have programs specifically for youth and students.

Q: Are work-in-progress submissions accepted? A: Ideally submissions are complete, however we will accept works-in-progress for preview (not exhibition) that are nearly complete and will be completed before October 2012. Works-in-progress should be clearly labeled “work-in-progress” and the elements that are incomplete must be specified in the application.

Q: I’m an Asian/Asian North American director, but my film/video has no Asian characters / subjects in it. What are the chances of my film being accepted? A: Yes, Reel Asian would like to see diverse Asian talent on screen. However, Reel Asian will also consider work by Asian directors that does not specifically feature Asian characters/ subjects. Reel Asian also showcases work by non-Asian directors that feature Asian content.

Q: Do you have any premiere status requirements? A: Premiere status is not an absolute requirement; however, premiere status is important to Reel Asian as it increases our ability to promote and publicize the films/videos and festival. Reel Asian prioritizes films and videos that have not had the opportunity to show in Toronto. Reel Asian is the largest festival of its kind in Canada and we encourage directors to premiere in Toronto at our festival.

Q: What if I want to submit more than one title? A: When submitting more than one title, please submit a separate form and fee for each submission.

Q: What if I have trouble with the online application form? A: If you are having trouble submitting your online application, please contact Reel Asian at or (416) 703-9333

Q: What if some of the information submitted is not yet confirmed? A: Please fill out the application form as accurately as possible. If the information submitted (such as premiere status or runtime) changes, notify the artistic director with the details.

Q: Does Reel Asian have awards and what are the categories? A: Yes, Reel Asian has a number of awards. The final details of the 2012 festival awards will be announced with the festival programming; however, 2012 awards categories will be similar to the 2011 award categories. The 2011 awards were:

REEL ASIAN AUDIENCE AWARD. All feature films at the festival are eligible for this prize $2,000 cash prize.

FASKEN MARTINEAU BEST FEATURE FILM OR VIDEO AWARD. All feature works are eligible for this prize $2,000 cash prize.

NATIONAL BANK BEST FIRST FEATURE FILM AWARD. All first feature films are eligible for this prize $500 cash prize.

ANIMASIAN AWARD. All animated films and videos are eligible for this prize $500 cash prize.

MOVIEOLA BEST SHORT FILM OR VIDEO AWARD. All short films and videos are eligible for this prize $500 cash prize Opportunity for broadcast on Movieola.

NFB BEST CANADIAN FILM OR VIDEO AWARD. All Canadian works are eligible for this prize $1,500 cash prize.

WIFT-T AWARD. All films made by female GTA-based artists are eligible for this prize. $1,200 programming pass, one-year membership and mentorship from WIFT-T, $1,000 in equipment rental from Videoscope, and 15% off rentals for one full year.

Q: How do award winners get selected? A: Every year, our programming team assembles a jury that includes notable members of the film community. Previous jurors include: KING-WEI CHU, co-director of Asian and martial arts programming and photographer at the Fantasia Film Festival, MASASHI NIWANO, Festival & Exhibitions Director for the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), and RENATA MOHAMED, Membership and Volunteer Coordinator for the Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto (LIFT).


bottom of page