Mission Statement

Internationales Frauen Film Fest Dortmund+Köln is Germany’s largest forum for women in the film industry and presents outstanding films by women spanning all genres and styles. For more than 40 years the festival has played an active role in ensuring that films by women directors are seen, appreciated and celebrated. We promote the influence of women in all fields of the cinema industry, mainly as directors, but also cinematographers, producers, scriptwriters, composers, songwriters and, actors to name but a few.

Our philosophy

Equality in film means handing greater decision-making power and responsibility to women in all areas of the industry, from screenwriting to editing. It also means that films by women have just as much chance of making it onto the big screen as those by male directors. This is why IFFF Dortmund+Köln is officially pro women quota in all sectors of the film industry and at their senior management levels.

»If she can see it, she can be it!« is the rallying cry of the MaLisa Foundation. Films with complex, empowered female protagonists become role models for our audiences. Films that operate outside patriarchal structures, such as the classic heroic epic, open up alternative narrative models for everyone. The festival’s films break apart the formal mechanisms of cinema through innovative cinematography, montage and sound-image combinations that are either absent or very hard to find in mainstream film. The festival thus provides a vital thrust to the history, present and future of cinema.

In the long term and from a social perspective, IFFF Dortmund+Köln plays its part in lifting the lid on discrimination against women, in all its guises both subtle or gratuitous – and confronts this by presenting (visual) counter-worlds.

Target groups

Our immediate target group are women film-makers from all fields of the industry, as well as cultural workers, especially mediators and curators, who act as vital multipliers for us. Our festival primarily attracts an audience that is not working in the film industry but that is interested in intersectional feminism. This includes young film students, queer groups and international film networks. And a broad-ranging, film-loving and above all cross-generational audience from Germany and around the world also regularly make their way to the cinemas laid on for IFFF Dortmund+Köln.

As an urban festival, IFFF Dortmund+Köln attracts culture fans from the region. It’s a regular highlight in the cultural calendar of the festival’s two host cities. A special focus is our programme of films for children and young people. Here, we attract around 1,000 young film-goers thanks to our targeted involvement of schools and kindergartens


The festival team is made up of curators, organisers and technicians. We have a family-friendly work policy that allows family and job to be compatible. Modern tools and digital work practices keep the team, which is spread across NRW, together. The work of IFFF Dortmund+Köln is dedicated to three fundamental goals: dialogue, diversity, empowerment.