2 - 11 nov 2018

Program last year

American Indie Competition

Original, authentic, and always special. American indies are films made without big money from Hollywood. You’ll not only see America’s finest independent films, but also the stars of the future. These writers, actors, and directors have talent and stand at the beginning of a promising career. See them in our American Indie Competition today - or at the Academy Awards tomorrow. Because we know how they started: as filmmakers who wanted to make films their way. And you can always taste that independent flavor.


In Panorama you’ll see the best new films from across the globe. Panorama features early premieres from the world’s greatests (Haneke! Clooney! Lanthimos! Östlund!), festival favorites from Berlin, Cannes, and Venice, but also unknown gems that will only make it to the Dutch silver screen in Leiden. Widen your horizons and see the entire the world of movies, from arthouse to mainstream - and everything in between.

Nordic Watching

Back in action: Nordic Watching, with everything we love so much. Imposing mountain ranges, absurd humor, and frighteningly human characters. Put on your woolen sweater and enjoy thesekinematografiskemasterpieces.


This year, LIFF is teaming up with Imagine, the genre-based film festival from Amsterdam. We’ll present some very imaginative movies that match both our interests. In April 2018, we’ll return the favor at their festival.

LUX Film Prize

The three best films from Europe are in the running for the European Parliament's LUX Prize. See all three for free at the LIFF!

Reel China

Huge blockbusters in home country China, but unknown in Europe. Unjustly! That’s why LIFF is bringing them to Leiden! In collaboration with the Confucius Institute. 


Short films from across the globe in various categories.

Science & Cinema

How realistic is the science we see on the silver screen? Does science fiction provide a glimpse of the future? Two of many questions we will pose in Science & Cinema, in which prominent scientists discuss films.


We will show three movies in the Temple Hall of the National Museum of Ancient History, to tie in with their exhibition Nineveh.

Summer Special

The LIFF Summer Special on the Pieterskerkplein has been one of Leidens favorite summertime events for years. Except in 2017, when an early autumn storm decided otherwise. That’s why we decided the entire party would have to take place during the festival, in Leiden’s warmest spot: the big greenhouse of the Botanical Gardens. Still free, and still ridiculouslygezellig.

Liff Pilot Season

Together with HBO, Lumiere, and A24, we’re bringing today’s newest shows to the silver screen. Peek a sneak preview of tomorrow’s shows at the LIFF!