Full-Session Training Program for Young Film Critics in the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) Young Film Critics Trainee Program 2021

Join a new generation of young and upcoming film critics in this program scheduled for 2021 to receive an intensive training on film analysis and criticism.

Five to eight candidates will be granted the resources to improve their journalistic practice and examine the wide range of independent cinema on offer at IFFR.

Application Deadline: October 28, 2020.


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Selected candidates in the program will be provided the following:

  • Complimentary IFFR 2021 press accreditation
  • A partial refund of travel costs when traveling from outside Europe
  • Access to training session fully scheduled with an exploration of-
    • Screenings
    • Exhibitions
    • Q&A sessions
    • Masterclasses and talks, debates
    • Film industry conferences 

as part of the program and to cover for their individual media outfits.

  • In addition, successful participants with published reports that meet IFFR’s standards will get the opportunity to attend the next edition of the festival as an accredited journalist.


To be eligible for the 2021 International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) Young Film Critics Trainee Program, applicants must:

  • Be below 30 years of age.
  • Be Fluent in written and spoken English language 
  • Have demonstrable experience in film criticism (print, video, audio, or online media) and storyboard or any creative form of daily reporting
  • Not be established enough to have the opportunity to attend international film festivals outside their countries. 
  • Have secured an agreement(s) with relevant print or online media to publish reports on International Film Festival Rotterdam 2019.


  • The trainees will form a team. 
  • Trainees will address the following topics: 
    • Film review
    • Festival review
    • Film Industry reports and trends
    • Arts & culture review
    • Masterclasses and talks review
  • Trainees will be part of the editorial team of the festival. 

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Application Instructions

To apply for the 2021 edition of the Film Critics Trainee Program, applicants are required to submit the following documents in a single compiled PDF file to internationalpress@IFFR.com :

  • Letter of motivation. 
  • Updated CV/Curriculum Vitae. 
  • The name and details of an affiliate for which you will cover IFFR 2021. 
  • A letter of recommendation from an editor(-in-chief) of the affiliate. 
  • 3 pieces (written, audio, or video) of recent work.  

About the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) Young Film Critics Trainee Program

Launched in 1998 after the IFFR recognized the importance of film analysis and criticism, the Young Film Critics trainee program supports young, talented and upcoming film critics.

The IFFR shares its beliefs by organizing trainee projects to teach young film critics the important role of film criticism in the perception of independent cinema.

The program will provide firsthand insight into a broad range of programs at the festival, ranging from films by famous arthouse auteurs to more experimental and obscure cinematic gems and from art installations and performances to talks and film industry conferences.

Discover more opportunities from International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR).

Key Dates and Order of Program

The deadline for submission of applications to the relevant address is Wednesday 28th October 2020. 

Due to the changing media landscape in this year’s edition, this year’s program will grant preference to candidates with 

  • Mixed talents next to excellent writing skills
  • Experience in (or great ideas for) audiovisual, audio or other innovative modes of journalism. 

Five to eight candidates will be selected.

The trainees will be hosted by the IFFR Press Office and the festival editorial staff.

The trainees will hold meetings with experienced film critics from different backgrounds, cover the festival for their own journalistic affiliation and be part of IFFR’s editorial staff. 

All of these will be done while experiencing and participating in the International Film Festival Rotterdam.

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Babajide is a content writer and site admin at Camberene. He majored in zoology and is also a tech enthusiast proficient in the use of python, R and other data analytics tools.

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