Screenings are segmented into three distinct areas: New Direction, Applause and Country Focus:

  • New Direction: films from emerging directors, from all over the world (in competition); many which have achieved critical acclaim.
  • Applause: out of competition, pay homage to the legacy of cinema by screening the early films of celebrated directors: from Mike Leigh, Sir Ridley Scott, Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood and more. We are currently out to several directors.
  • Country Focus: every year, CIFF will nominate a different “Country Focus” - to showcase emerging directors from one country. Poland is our “Country Focus” in 2019; Polish directors under consideration have achieved global recognition for their work.


During the six days and nights of the Festival, the organisers have planned a series of events to attract industry professionals and students off film, enthusiasts, members of the public and the media.  The events will be conducted and attended by industry professionals, celebrated persons and more. The programme will be announced once we open up ticket sales, nearer to the time of the launch of the Festival.

Events include Master Classes on Make Up, Special Effects, Acting, Casting, Cinematography and Film Production.  The events are designed to be attractive to those who wish to learn and those who wish to understand ie the public.

Other events include Q&A with directors, panel discussions on topical subjects of interest to a wide public but film related, as well as talks and lectures from celebrated personalities about their personal experience in writing, directing and financing their films.

The Cheltenham International Film Festival

Competition Jury

The organisers are currently in discussion with other high profile industry personalities to join the jury.


A programme for emerging/young filmmakers
The future of the film industry depends on filmmakers who are coming into the industry now and/or who have started to make their impression with film shorts and early day feature films.
Genesis is a section of the film festival aimed at filmmakers looking to share their experience with other filmmakers and to listen to the knowledge and experience of established industry professionals by way of Master Classes, panel discussions, Q&A and talks/lectures.  
Among the subjects discussed are: accessing funds from the BFI, structuring a film budget, accessing finance for your film, sales & distribution of your film, independent film production - what you need to know.  And, how to make the most of film festivals.  
Well-established film industry professionals will participate in these sessions, including  BFI executives, Phil Hunt MD of leading film company, Bankside Films, and other notable names will be announced shortly.
We shall also host sessions on the technical crafts of film making including the leading cinematographer Piotr Sobocinski Jr, from Poland, which has produced so many internationally-recognised and award winning Directors of Photography.