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FAQ

Why must I have an account?

Creating an account allows you to:

  • Add shots to your bin and archive them for an unlimited time
  • Share clips by email
  • Download low-resolution clips free of charge
  • Place orders for high resolution transfers
  • Receive our monthly newsletter (optional)

Why can’t I find what I’m looking for?

Here are a few tips to help optimize your search.

Our search engine goes by NFB film title, contents of the description and subjects as indexed in our database. If you end up with few or no results, try:

  • Checking your spelling
  • Using a synonym or related term (i.e. “nursery” instead of “daycare”)
  • Using a more general term (i.e. “Drought” instead of “Dustbowl”)

If you end up with a huge number of results, try refining your search by:

  • Using a more specific term (i.e. “Rocky Mountains” instead of “Mountains”)
  • Using Boolean operators (AND, OR and NOT) between terms (i.e. “children” AND “kite”)
  • Specifying dates, location, format, etc.

Contact us if you still can’t find what you’re looking for.

How can I view shots that are “Currently Being Digitized”?

Because of the vast size of our collection, not all of our shots are online. The only way to view non-digitized material is to order a timecoded screener for a minimum charge of $75 (up to one hour of footage). To limit your search to digitized footage only, go to Advanced Search and select View Online.

How do I download timecoded footage?

  1. 1) Create an account here (or if you already have one, log in on the site’s home page).
  2. 2) Do your search (to specify dates, locations, etc., click “Advanced Search” under the white search bar).
  3. 3) Click the “+” sign to add the shots you want to a bin (which allows you to share by email or select specific timecodes), OR add them straight to your cart by clicking the cart icon.
  4. 4) Create a new bin to store your shots, or choose an existing one if you’re a returning customer (skip to Step 8 if you added your clips straight to your cart).
  5. 5) Open the bin you created and choose the timecodes you want by using the “scissor” editing tool and clicking “Save”.
  6. 6) Select the clips you want to download by checking the little white box in the corner of each image.
  7. 7) Click “Add Selected Clips To My Cart”.
  8. 8) Open your cart and click “Order”.
  9. 9) “Free Download” is automatically selected, so click “Continue”.
  10. 10) Check the delivery information (especially your email address) and click “Continue” until you receive a confirmation number.
  11. 11) An email with a link will automatically be sent to the address you provided. If this step takes longer than a half an hour, please contact us.
  12. 12) When you receive the link in your email, open it and right-click on the .mov file to save to your computer, which will begin the download.

What does it cost to licence footage?

We have a wide variety of licence options. Please contact us for our rate card.

What High Res formats are available?

For shots available on 16 mm and 35 mm, we can do custom HD transfers to your specifications. For material available on video, we can deliver NTSC or PAL, SD or HD, depending on the masters available for the selected shots (Upres and frame rate conversion costs extra). We can provide QuickTime Pro Res and other file formats digitally, or on tape if preferred.

PLEASE NOTE: Some of the SD material on our site runs at 23.976fps, but is only available in High Res in 29.97. Please contact us before ordering if this is problematic for you.

What is the turnaround time for delivery in High Res?

This depends on the shots ordered and the format they’re available in. Please contact us for more information.

How much do transfers cost?

This depends on the shots ordered and the format they’re available in. Please contact us for a precise quote.

How do I order High Res material?

You can place an order by emailing us your list of shots and timecodes, or by creating an account and passing the selected shots through your shopping cart, specifying the desired format.

Where do I find information on licencing an excerpt from an NFB film?

You’ve come to the right place. Please contact us for rates and third party clearance info.

Where to find information about the NFB’s Archives Department and the access to information process?

Please note that the NFB Archives site specializes in licensing the use of stock footage, offering a wealth of archival material such as film clips, stock photos, and more. For general information on the contents of the NFB archival holdings (other than archival footage), please contact the Archives Department by email (archivesdoc@nfb.ca).

However, please contact the Access to Information and Privacy Coordinator if you wish to remain anonymous for the purposes of making a request under the Access to Information Act or the Privacy Act.

In fact, if you wish to consult the documents of the Archives Department that are not accessible to the public, we invite you to visit the NFB’s Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) page to learn more about the process and procedures.

General Inquiries

If you need assistance please call or email us.