Festival and Special Screenings

The last two months of our annual Institute for Documentary Filmmaking Graduate Certificate Program are devoted to a group production of a documentary film. Many of these films go on to screen (and win awards) at film festivals throughout the U.S. and overseas. Below are a list of recent classes' films that are still on the festival circuit, where they are screening and where they've screened recently. 

Queens in Training Queens in Training 

2017 Institute for Documentary Filmmaking

Two young African-American girls learn to play chess competitively and apply those skills to obstacles of race and gender as they prepare for a citywide co-educational tournament in Washington, D.C.

Recent Screenings: Austin Under The Stars Film Festival (October 2017 - WINNER, Best Ensemble), Alexandria Film Festival (November 2017), Docs in Progress Community Stories Festival (November 2017). 




Life in StridesLife in Strides

2017 Institute for Documentary Filmmaking

Jake, a young man with autism, has become a champion in therapeutic horseback riding. Jake’s mother Joanne has been by his side throughout his riding career, helping him stay calm on his horse. Now, Jake is put to the test as he enters his first non-therapeutic riding competition, where the circumstances are outside Jake and Joanne’s control. WINNER, Award of Merit, Best Shorts Competition.

Recent Screenings: Awareness Festival (October 2017 - WINNER, Audience Award for Student Film, Awareness Festival), Austin Under The Stars Film Festival (October 2017 - WINNER, Best Editing), Chesapeake Film Festival (October 2017 - WINNER, Best Student Short Film), Alexandria Film Festival (November 2017). 


Berning Love The FilmBerning Love 

2016 Institute for Documentary Filmmaking 

Originally inspired by the emergence of politically-focused dating websites such as BernieSingles.com, this short documentary highlights the parallel ways in which people search for love in their political and personal lives.  

Recent Screenings: Berlin Independent Film Festival (February 2017), Green Mountain Film Festival (March 2017), Rincon International Film Festival (March 2017 - WINNER, Overall Best Documentary Short), Bay Area Women in Film and Media's International Short Films Showcase (April 2017), Women in Film and Video's Locavore Film Series (October 2017), Docs in Progress Community Stories Festival (November 2017)


Everything Between, The FilmEverything Between 

2016 Institute for Documentary Filmmaking 

Ethan Spalding has been a musician his entire life and has written over 500 songs, but his new single is the one he thinks will change music. The self-proclaimed inventor of Traprock, Ethan, like so many people, wants to make a living doing what he loves. His new single may help him do just that.

Recent Screenings: Northern Virginia International Film and Music Festival (April 2017 - WINNER, Best Documentary Under 45 Minutes), North Beach American Film Festival (June 2017 - WINNER, Best Student Film), Frederick Film and Music Festival (June 2017), Go Independent International Film Festival D.C. (September 2017 - WINNER, Best Documentary).


Healing River, The FilmHealing River

2015 Institute for Documentary Filmmaking 

On the backdrop of the Potomac River, a young man pieces together his future in effort to recover from a traumatic accident. Battles with opioid addiction, post-traumatic stress and the fight to recover converge in this documentary which marks a season of change for Andy and his family. Healing River explores the quest for an identity apart from addiction and the delicate balance between adaptation and perseverance necessary to survive. The confluence of past and present reveal the climactic choice to begin the process of healing.

Recent Screenings: Bentonville Film Festival (May 2017), New Hope Film Festival (July 2017)