The first edition of the Belgrade Documentary and Short Film Festival took place in 1954 in Pula, Croatia, as a part of the Festival of Yugoslav Film.
In March 1960, the Festival moved to Belgrade and the name Belgrade Documentary and Short Film Festival was introduced in 2004.
Starting from 2017, the Belgrade Youth Center (Dom omladine Beograda) became the executive producer and the venue for all events related to the Festival.
Ever since its start, the Festival has played an important role in promoting domestic documentary, short, animated and experimental film. As a relevant place for introducing new domestic films, the Festival remained a meeting point between film professionals, film students and film enthusiasts from all over the world.
All major domestic filmmakers, like Krsto Škanata, Vlatko Gilić, Stole Popov, Bato Čengić, Puriša Đorđević, Dušan Makavejev, premiered their films at the March Festival, while Dušan Vukotić won the Gran Prix for his masterpieceThe Substitute (Surogat) at this very Festival, just one month before it won the Academy Award for Short Subjects, Animated Film.
Keeping the tradition alive in the 21st century, the Belgrade Documentary and Short Film Festival (known under its popular name the Martovski Festival) is in touch with modern trends in cinema and film technology, it screens films of high artistic value and boosts domestic filmmaking.