About the Festival

CineLibri Statuette
CineLibri 2020
CineLibri 2020
CineLibri 2017 - Gallery
CineLibri Gallery
CineLibri 2017 - Gallery

If literature is the bread, then cinema is the wine of imagination.


Proven to be the world’s first international Book to Film festival, Cinelibri is an extraordinary annual event, inspired by the interaction of arts – cinema and literature, in particular. It is held in Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas, Gabrovo, Veliko Tarnovo, Stara Zagora and other cities every autumn, and showcases the best examples of films connected to literary works, both contemporary and classic. Cinelibri is an extremely important, independent platform for high-quality European film productions and co-productions and it is the most rapidly growing film festival in Bulgaria. Every year Cinelibri welcomes world-renowned filmmakers, actors, screenwriters and audiovisual professionals, along with affirmed European film professionals and journalists to present films from the program.

The festival includes annually around 70 non-national films with national premieres. Film program consists of 60% national premieres of non-national films, 30% international premieres of non-national films and 10% national films with international premieres. Along premiere screenings, the program includes also official selections in 3 contests; parallel roster of curated screenings out of competition; exclusive international live discussions and a vast number of industry meetings, pitching sessions, professional panels, creative and educational events, including but not limited to lectures, workshops, masterclasses, Q&A’s, networking cocktails, music and dance events among others.

Cinelibri IFF has genuinely international film selections and reputable jury members in each of the competition sections. Considering the concept of the festival, which values the quality script and the synthesis of the film experience, the jury representatives in the main competition for a full-length feature film are usually identified and chosen from professionals with different occupations related to the cinema: directors, writers, screenwriters, cinematographers, producers, film composers, actors. In the very beginning of its existence, the festival established also a Cinelibri Grand Prize for Entire Contribution.

Cinelibri has international competitions in three sections:
► 5 members taking decision about the International Feature Film Competition (1 from Bulgaria and 4 Non-National Professionals from Europe) – only adaptations. The International Feature Film Competition bestows an award for best film, best script and audience award
► 3 Members taking decision about the International Short Film Competition. Entries accepted: European short films up to 15 minutes, without limits for their genre specifics; submission: between May 9 – August 8.
► 3 members taking decision about the International Documentary. Entries accepted: European feature documentaries related to books, writers, literary work, inspired by a text, article etc. Submission period: between May 9 – August 8.

The lineup of the selection of International Feature Film Competition only selects films based on books. Every year, in addition to three international competitions, the festival has parallel sections of several film modules, which are organized according to a certain criterion. The parallel programme highlights adaptations, but also films inspired by novels, poems, theater plays, graphic novels, films from writing directors, original scripts authored by writers, and films with a subject somehow related to literature (Brother and Sister). It is the only film festival with such concept worldwide. We add to all this not only live action features but also animations, biopics, films for children and young adult, Panoramas and Tributes, etc.

From the very beginning, Cinelibri has been an attractive scene for a number of educational modules such as lectures, panel discussions with visiting experts, masterclasses, workshops and various free events with the participation of special guests of the festival and professional modules such as industry meetings and pitching sessions.

Sustainable and diversity-respectful events focus on issues related to the environment, gender-equality, and social inclusion by collaborating with a wide range of specialized NGOs. The meetings with established European creators and talented young professionals, as well as all the accompanying events with dignified speakers and guests aim to promote Europe’s cultural heritage and contemporary European cinema and literature. Cinelibri is an independent forum, organized and upheld by devoted professionals, with clear vision and selection procedures open to international guests and media. Furthermore, the festival maintains a yearlong activity with numerous events in cooperation with schools and universities, decentralized screenings, regular distribution of European films, international meetings and interactions.

The mission of the festival is to disseminate European cultural values, share experience and promote both the unfading classics and latest achievements of contemporary art by seeking new perspectives on topical and universal themes. The forum aims to provide access to European culture and tradition in a modern, attractive and influential manner. Combining artistic techniques and resources of cinema, literature, theater performances, classical music and visual arts. Cinelibri adheres to the strategy of supporting the interaction of arts and promoting intercultural dialogues, while facilitating access to non-commercial European cinema. The festival maintains long-lasting partnerships with all embassies, diplomats and cultural institutes in Bulgaria and abroad, co-operates with a number of European cultural organizations, incl. production companies, art associations and funds, industry professionals, film festivals etc.