The 11th Annual Bushwick Film Festival Announces Festival Dates: OCTOBER 10 - 14

Female-Founded Festival Brings Unique Stories To Bushwick Audiences


“The Bushwick Film Festival shines a light on indie filmmakers and diversity in the film industry.”


“BFF gives directors, cinematographers, and actors from around the world a platform to shine on.”

– PopSugar

“What started out as a small community event in Brooklyn, is now an established film festival.”

– Huffington Post

“The event brings together filmmakers, artists, and creative thinkers.”

– Fox News

“Get to know NYC’s next filmmaking generation at the Bushwick Film Festival.”

– Tribeca Film



Brooklyn, NY— From October 10–14, 2018, the Bushwick Film Festival (BFF) will celebrate its 11th year, embarking on its second decade of bringing independent stories to audiences. Located in Bushwick, the bustling center of Brooklyn’s artistic and cultural community, the festival will offer five days of screenings, panels, workshops, parties, and networking opportunities to accommodate for its expanding audience and rising number of film submissions. BFF so far has received a record-breaking 1,000 submissions in 2018. And since its inception, the Bushwick Film Festival has showcased the works of over 400 filmmakers, most of them Brooklyn- and New York-based, as well as the work of international filmmakers from 40 countries across the globe. Festival attendees can expect to share their love of cinema with fellow supporters of the arts, along with the opportunity to celebrate culture, diversity, and community over the course of the 5-day festival weekend.

Over 100 films were programmed at last year’s 10th annual BFF, with 17 filmmakers walking away with awards in categories such as Best Narrative Feature, Best Doc Feature, Best Short Film, and Best Web Series. Click here to see a full list of our 2017 Award Winners. In addition to a wide range of genres and topics, the festival’s programming continues to highlight films directed by and starring women, along with stories from underrepresented groups. Last year, approximately 50% of the total number of film directors was comprised of women.

Festival founder Kweighbaye Kotee passionately encourages inclusivity in all forms. At a young age, Kotee had fled from Liberia with her family in order to escape violence from an emerging civil war. Once they arrived in the U.S, she flourished in her new home. Kotee eventually went on to accept a scholarship from the Wight Foundation and later received a B.S. in Media Culture and Communications from NYU. Her story is featured in this POPSUGAR and Delta Air lines video. In an effort to create a diverse collective of filmmakers and audiences and also contribute to her community, Kotee founded the Bushwick Film Festival. The BFF is now an industry staple for emerging talent and screens the work of the most promising filmmakers of today.

Past BFF filmmakers and actors include: Diarra Kilpatrick (CAA Actress, ABC’s American Koko); Elizabeth Wood (Director, White Girl); Kevin Corrigan (Actor, Goodfellas); Kahlil Joseph (Director, Beyonce’s Lemonade film); Lucy Mulloy (Director, Una Noche); Kitty Green (Director, Netflix’s Casting JonBenet); Tamara P. Carter (Writer, HBO’s The Leftovers); Phoebe Robinson (Actress, 2 Dope Queens); Robin Comisar (Director / Filmmaker Mag’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film); Carrie Coon (Actress, Fargo); Felicia Pearson (Actress, The Wire); Terence Nance (Director, An Oversimplification of Her Beauty); Laura Moss (Director / Filmmaker Mag’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film); Tequan Richmond (Actor, Ray); MJ Rodriguez (Actress, Nurse Jackie); Natalia Leite (Director, M.F.A.). In addition, industry professionals from Sony Pictures, 3 Arts Entertainment, Vimeo, Kickstarter, the Tribeca Film Festival, Reelworks, UnionDocs, BRIC, ESPN Films, VICE, and Brigade have participated in the annual event.

Past jury members & panelists include: Caroline Waterlow (Oscar Winner, O.J.: Made in America); Heidi Ewing (Oscar Nominee, Jesus Camp); Sam Pollard (Oscar Nominee, 4 Little Girls); Ira Sachs (Director, Little Men); Arturo Castro (Actor, Netflix’s Narcos); Adam Neuhaus (Director of Development, ESPN Films and Original Content at ESPN); Peter Gerard (GM of Entertainment, Vimeo); Mollye Asher (Producer, The Rider); Molly O’Keefe (Senior Director of Artists Programs, Tribeca Film Institute); Marc John Jefferies (Actor, Power); Aisha Harris (Slate Magazine / Represent Podcast); Will Rowbotham (3 Arts Entertainment).

After a decade full of incredible screenings and moments, the festival is as driven as ever to continue its passion for sharing amazing stories with its audience. This year’s festival holds a special surprise, with the release of some incredible news on opening night. Festival organizers anticipate that this major announcement will bolster the festival’s impact in the community for years to come and truly make #Bushwick2018 a one-of-a-kind experience.

Important Dates:

  • June 30, 2018: Film Submissions Deadline
  • August 30, 2018: Filmmaker Welcoming Ceremony at Borough Hall
  • July 1, 2018: Festival Passes go on sale
  • Sept 1, 2018: Tickets go on sale
  • October 10–14, 2018:  11th Annual Bushwick Film Festival

More news to come via:

About The Bushwick Film Festival

Founded in 2007, The Bushwick Film Festival (BFF) is a leading independent film and media company in Brooklyn. The festival is hailed as one of Brooklyn’s most influential cinematic events for its contribution to the borough’s artistic, cultural, and economic growth. The festival attracts film and entertainment industry leaders at national and international levels and showcases films created by the best and most diverse emerging independent filmmakers in Brooklyn and worldwide. We provide a platform for emerging filmmakers to share their stories and present opportunities for them to make a living doing what they love. We provide spaces for audiences from all backgrounds to connect and discover new independent movies and experience unique cultural events. Please visit our website:


Press Contact:

Nathalie Thomas | Marketing Coordinator | o: 347.450.3464


kweighbaye Kotee