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Abstract For the first time, gliadin films with excellent strength and water stability have been developed without using any crosslinking agents. So far, it has not been possible to obtain water stable gliadin films even after crosslinking. In this research, a novel method of using aqueous urea and ethanol has been developed to obtain highly water stable gliadin films without using crosslinking chemicals. The effects of concentrations of gliadin, urea and ethanol on the strength of the films and the stability of the films in water at high temperatures and various pH conditions has been studied. Gliadin films developed in this research have strength of about 30 MPa similar to the strength of previously reported gliadin films crosslinked with aldehydes and cysteine. Gliadin films obtained in this research were stable in pH 7.2 water at 50 °C for 20 days. The gliadin films did not dissolve in 70% ethanol which readily dissolves gliadin powder.