Edmonton’s iconic International Festival of Winter Cinema returns to celebrate local and international winter, mountain, and polar cinema on our giant snow screen!
With a focus on films featuring Indigenous perspectives, winter life, snow, and our changing climate, we are the world’s only free outdoor winter film festival that pays industry-standard screening fees.
Our SIXTH season will showcase short and feature films in conjunction with our programming partner, Silver Skate, Edmonton’s festival for winter sports, arts and culture, and recreation for the whole family.
After a day at Silver Skate, join us, heated by blankets, hot chocolate, coffee, and a blazing fire, to watch the best in new and classic local, Canadian, and international winter shorts and feature films.
We will continue to offer preferential programming of local films, including those that don’t necessarily include winter themes.
The IFWC is supported by the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Cultural Human Resources Council, Edmonton Arts Council, Edmonton Screen Industries Office, Town Square Brewing, Silver Skate, Winter City Edmonton, YEGFilm, and many others.
IFWC awards three prizes for the best in winter and local cinema!
All winners are provided with a cool certificate and laurel.
Some years have included cash prizes.
The Golden Snowflake
Best Winter Film
The Crimson Snowflake
Best Canadian Film
The Sapphire Snowflake
Best Edmonton Film
Terms for Submissions
1. Except for Edmonton-made films, all films must be relevant to at least one of the theme(s) of the festival in order to be considered as a possible candidate. The theme(s) of the festival are Winter, climate change, alpine, polar, and Indigenous perspectives.
2. All participants understand that their selected work may be shown at least once during the International Festival of Winter Cinema and any other related event.
3. The IFWC welcomes all entries, but specifically encourages films made by Edmonton, low income, LGBTQ2S+, BIPOC or differently abled filmmakers.
4. All non-English films with dialogue must have English subtitles.
5. All artist fees will be paid by PayPal or Interac e-transfer to the submitter within 90 days after the festival. The IFWC reserves the right to amend its screening fees rates and payment schedule at any time and for any reason.
6. The IFWC reserves the right to remove selected films from its program for any reason and at any time.
7. The IFWC shall not be held responsible for any audiovisual materials that are damaged as part of the submission or exhibition process.
8. IFWC will only accept digital screener submissions and exhibition copies.
9. By submitting your film, you agree to the IFWC using all audiovisual media associated with your film and your press kit for promotional purposes in perpetuity.
10. The IFWC reviews all submissions but shall not be held responsible for any incomplete submissions, including those that affect final decisions. For all technical issues related to your submission please contact filmfreeway.com.
11. The IFWC encourages filmmakers to attend the Festival in an environmentally sustainable manner and does not pay for travel costs. Non-Edmonton filmmakers are encouraged to prioritize investing their resources into developing their local arts and culture scene over long-distance travel.
12. Filmmakers of any age may submit to the festival. Filmmakers under 18 years of age whose films are selected may be asked to provide parental/guardian consent for selected activities.
13. Upon submitting a film, the applicant agrees it holds all rights to distribute and exhibit all intellectual property associated with their submission.
14. The International Festival of Winter Cinema Society is the administrator of the International Festival of Winter Cinema and reserves the right to amend any rules and terms at any time and for any reason.
15. By submitting a film, the applicant acknowledges that they have read and agreed to the above terms.
The IFWC still aims to produce a 2023 festival. However, if it is cancelled due to COVID19, submission fees will not be refunded and all submitted films will automatically be placed in competition for the 2024 film festival.
Dates & Location
February 10 to 19, 2023
The International Festival of Winter Cinema is beyond excited to announce that we will be returning to Hawrelak Park, to continue our unique environment, and staying free to attend.
Winter Activity Safety
Edmonton is well known for its cold weather, so having the right clothing is essential to enjoying the outdoors, staying warm and comfortable. We have a fire going at all times, but we still need people to take care of themselves. We also do our best, but slips can still happen, so be careful.
IFWC brings the best tips to dress for success!
Up to 60% of your body heat can escape through your head during cold weather. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you wear a warm toque or beanie.
Dressing in layers helps keep you dry, which is crucial to staying warm. Look for gloves and mittens made from waterproof yet breathable materials.
Snow boots are highly recommended. They allow you to keep your feet warm and dry while protecting them from the cold, pair them with knitted socks.
Public Health Guidelines
Please do not attend if feeling sick for any reason or you have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 7 days.
Masks are recommended and can be provided if requested.
Avoid crowding with people outside of your cohort.
Hand sanitizer is available.