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Download NFB films? Now you can!

Download NFB films? Now you can!

Download NFB films? Now you can!

This post is a translation. Find the French original here.

Until now, you could only watch films via streaming. However, over the past few months, my web team colleagues have been working hard to bring you more options. We are pleased to announce that it is now possible to download certain films in our collection.

Why offer the download option?

Most Internet users are happy to watch our films via streaming, either through our website, or on our Facebook, YouTube, Vimeo or Dailymotion pages. However, some people may find it handy to download our films so they can watch them later without an Internet connection. I’m thinking of families on a road trip who want to watch films on their mobile device without going over the data limit for their mobile Internet plan.

Why buy?

Buyable downloads also allow us to offer films that wouldn’t be available on otherwise. Why? Because some films are very expensive to make available on the Internet. My colleague Carolyne Weldon gives a very good explanation of the reality of copyright in her article What goes into clearing rights for streaming films on Some films were coproduced, others contain music that’s protected by costly copyrights, and so on.

Furthermore, it often takes a long time (at least a year) before the latest NFB productions are available for viewing online. With buyable downloads, we will be able to offer the opportunity to see first-run and just-completed films much faster.

How do you download a film?

Not all films can be downloaded. For now, there are more then 500 available on and You can find them easily by visiting the page <Explore> and then narrowing your search (left-hand column) with the options Buy the Digital Version and Buyable. You can then sort your results in alphabetical order or by publication date. If you have any comments or questions, be sure to share them with us.

In the meantime, I wish you many a wonderful discovery!

For more info, please consult the Digital Downloads section of our FAQ.

Add a new comment
  1. Let me get this straight: you want money to stop your webgeeks from crippling your site? No thanks.

    Y’see, I’m thinking of people in the hospital who have about an hour a day to go down the hall where they have the free wifi, download some stuff to watch when they get back to their bed for the other 23 hrs.

    I am certainly not thinking about people on vacation with money coming out their arses. They don’t watch NFB, they watch stupid disney flicks and other hollywood crap.

    Why don’t you sell nice custom 2 hour compilation DVDs? That *would* be worth money. Then you could set the webgeeks on that task and get them working on something constructive.

    — Mike,
  2. I don’t see a “download” option on the left hand corner

    — Lois,
    1. Hi Lois,
      The button has indeed been renamed to “Buy the Digital Version” in the “Explore” section. I just changed the information in my post.
      Thanks for your comment! Catherine

      — Catherine Perreault,
  3. @Mary – Every time you purchase an HD or SD version of a film, it comes with a mobile version that can be viewed on your mobile device. Short answer – yes.

    — Julie Matlin,
  4. Right now it shows All or Buyable, and the few i looked at under All, I could not download.

    Has this feature been turned on yet?

    — Michael Polo,
    1. Hi Michael,
      thanks for your comment.
      At this time, there are no free downloads. To see our selection of downloadable titles, click “Buyable”. All the films are there. Hope this helps!

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