2024 Festival FAQ

Q: When and where is the 2024 festival happening?

A: Freep Film Festival will take place April 10-14, 2024. The festival will feature a mix of in-person and at-home virtual screenings. In person, the festival footprint will be centered in Midtown Detroit, with some complementary locations in the suburbs.

Many past festival venue partners will return in 2024, including the Detroit Film Theatre at the Detroit Institute of Arts, Birmingham 8 Powered by Emagine, Michigan Science Center, Detroit Historical Museum, and Frame.

Q: What’s in store for the upcoming festival?

A: Expect the best in documentaries – many with strong local connections – and conversations about the films and the issues they raise, informed by Free Press journalism. There also will be a mix of parties, educational and networking events. The lineup will be announced in the middle of March. Here are few details we can share now:

  • Opening Night will be held at the DIA’s prestigious Detroit Film Theatre on April 10.
  • Dinner and a Movie events – which were complete sellouts in 2023 – will again happen at Frame in Hazel Park.
  • The festival is featuring a free screening series spotlighting Asian American stories curated by Michigan filmmaker Razi Jafri. In its second year, the series is in partnership with American Citizens for Justice, Rising Voices, the Ford Foundation, and the Michigan Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission.
  • Real Fresh, the festival’s showcase of some of the best work by student filmmakers at area colleges, will return for the third year.
  • In addition to the in-person events, much of the lineup will be available for at-home streaming.

Q: Can I watch anything at home?  

A: Yes, please see our list of virtual films and guide to watch at home here:  Virtual Screenings – Freep Film Festival.

Q: Is it possible to volunteer for the festival?

A: Yes! And we much appreciate you asking. We are looking for people who are friendly, enjoy answering a lot of questions and dig what the festival has to offer. Each shift will range from 3-4 hours, and we request that our volunteer can make time for at least two shifts. Volunteers will receive free access to a film screening for each shift worked, along with some festival merch. Plus you’ll get to hang out with your fellow film lovers! To volunteer, please fill out this form.

Q: Where can I keep up with updates as they are announced?

A: All of our news will be gathered at freepfilmfestival.com. We’re also on Facebook, X and Instagram. Additionally, you can sign up for our email newsletter on the home page of this website.

Q: Are sponsorship and partnership opportunities available?

A: Definitely. We’d love to talk. Email the festival’s Aimie Rosner at arosner@michigan.com.

Q: Are there any COVID-19 restrictions at festival venues?

A: Freep Film Festival follows the rules of its participating venues. As of early 2024, none of the venues require masks but welcome guests to wear masks and socially distance.

We’ll be asking our guests to pay careful attention to festival updates we share via email in case venues implement new rules.

Q: How does the festival choose its films? Is it accepting submissions?

The festival is invite-based and curated, meaning it does not have a fee-based, open submission portal. That said, the festival team is always interested in hearing about documentaries that might be a good fit for the lineup. This especially includes films set in Detroit, Michigan, or the Midwest, or led by those with connections to the area.

Interested filmmakers should email freepfilmfestival@freepress.com with the basic details about their documentary – whether completed or in-progress – and the programming team will be in touch.

The film lineup is being finalized in early 2024, so reach out sooner rather than later if you have something to share.

Q: I have further questions. Whom should I contact?

A: Email us at freepfilmfestival@freepress.com, and we’ll get back to you.