Submissions are now open for this year’s initiative, which advocates to combat violence against women, and will take place from 25 november – 10 december 2020.

Inspired by the UN Women campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender- based Violence, the 16 DAYS 16 FILMS initiative is a short film competition that focuses on filmed content addressing violence against women. 

Now in its third year, the initiative will run online from 25 November to 10 December, between the International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women and International Human Rights Day. 

And for the second consecutive year, Modern Films has partnered with the Kering Foundation, which has been combating violence against women since 2008. 

Together, these organizations champion female-identifying filmmakers internationally, providing a platform in which they can share stories that increase visibility about gender-based violence and in turn, create a dialogue to empower women and push for change. 

16 finalists will be chosen from the UK, Ireland, France, Italy, and for the first time, from Mexico and the United States. One short film will be released each day between 25 November and 10 December on both Modern Films and the Kering Foundation online platforms, and the film will also be shared by the specialist organisation NGOs Chayn Italia in Italy, En avant toute(s) in France, Fondo Semillas in Mexico, NNEDV in the U.S and the UK Says No More campaign in the UK.

The initiative will conclude with an awards ceremony and a special event screening of all 16 films in mid-December.

An independent jury will choose the winning filmmaker and two runners up, with each of the three receiving a prize. The first-place winner will also receive the opportunity to create a new public service announcement for UK Says No More, a national campaign focused on raising awareness and preventing domestic abuse and sexual violence in the UK. 

Last year, almost 150 films were submitted and short-listed to 16 finalists, with the jury crowning BAFTA-nominated filmmaker Myriam Raja’s The Third Sorrow as the winner, followed by Antonella Fabiano and Chiara Speziale’s Kedamono and Jessie Ayles’ Waves. Jury members included actresses Thandie Newton and Jodie Whitaker, director Alice Winocour, activist Marai Larasi and broadcaster Edith Bowman. 

Myriam Raja’s You Are Not Alone campaign video for UK Says No More can now be viewed online here:

“We are proud to have the opportunity to bring this initiative to international audiences for the third consecutive year. With the number of global domestic abuse cases having risen dramatically in the wake of global lockdown, 16 Days 16 Films enables us to bring issues related to gender-based violence to the forefront, allowing us to further support womxn while championing female-identifying filmmakers.” Johanna von Fischer and Ginta Gelvan, Producers 16 Days 16 Films.

“The Kering Foundation is pleased to continue its partnership with Modern Films and extend the 16 Days 16 Films initiative to the United States and Mexico this year. It is essential to elevate the voices of female-identifying filmmakers in order to highlight the complexities of the violence that affects 1 out of 3 women worldwide. Through this initiative, we hope that we can mobilize more individuals towards collective action to create change.” Céline Bonnaire, Executive Director of the Kering Foundation.

Submissions from the UK, Ireland, France, Italy, Mexico and the United Sates are now open until Thursday 8 October 2020 and the 16 finalists and jury members will be announced mid-November. 

Films must be 20 minutes or under, be directed by female-identifying filmmakers and speak powerfully to the many forms which gender-based violence and inequality can take.

16 Days 16 Films was launched in 2018 by female-led UK film production and distribution company, Modern Films, in association with UK Says No More. For more information please visit 

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