Latest News

Indigo Moon Announces Award Winners for the 2021 Festival!

The 2021 festival was still a bit weird with our Opening Night Film and Free Family Film Night in-person and the rest of the festival virtual. 

Still, we had remarkable films. It has been said that difficult times bring out creativity and this year’s films were proof!


Jury Award for Documentary Feature: (TIE) Canoe4Covid,  Pave The Road









Jury Award for Documentary Short: The Beast of Our Time

Jury Award for Narrative Feature: Freddie’s Piano

Jury Award for Narrative Short: Letter of Wreck

Jury Award for Student Film: Triangle

Jury Award for Animation: (3-Way TIE) Adventures in the Time of Covid, The Tree Has Been Planted, On/Off






Audience Award for Documentary Feature: Hope Unleashed

Audience Award for Documentary Short: Amber’s Halfway Home

Audience Award for Narrative Feature: Lonesome

Audience Award for Narrative Short: Letter of Wreck

Audience Award for Student Film: Hen & Ham

Audience Award for Animation: Adventures in the Time of Covid

Indigo Moon Announces Award Winners for the 2019 Festival!

The 2019 festival was the best yet and we are so proud to announce the winning films! You can find out more about these and all the films that screened at IMFF 2019 on our FILM page.


Jury Award for Documentary Feature was a tie! Rigged: The Voter Suppression Handbook and My Father’s Brothers

Jury Award for Documentary Short – A Passion of Gold and Fire

Jury Award for Narrative Feature – Artik

Jury Award for Narrative Short – InTime

Jury Award for Animation – Irony

Jury Award for Student Film – Dead Ends


Audience Award for Documentary Feature- My Father’s Brothers

Audience Award for Documentary Short- A Passion of Gold and Fire

Audience Award for Narrative Feature- Homeless Ashes

Audience Award for Narrative Short- Portrait of a Woman at Dawn

Audience Award for Animation- Irony

Audience Award for Student Film- Latteship

Indigo Moon Film Festival to Give 100% of Festival Box Office to Connections of Cumberland County!

Indigo Moon Film Festival trophy. Source: GroundSwell Pictures
Indigo Moon Film Festival trophy

Recently GroundSwell  Pictures changed its slogan to more closely match what the organization is all about. “Film Inspires Change” means that the films brought in offer different viewpoints from across the globe and help viewers better understand people who are different from us.

This year, the Board of GroundSwell Pictures decided, as Ghandi said, to “be part of the change we wish to see.”  That is why the Board is pleased to announce that Indigo Moon Film Festival will give 100% of its Box Office from the 2019 film festival to Connections of Cumberland County.

Every ticket purchased and every Pass purchased will directly benefit not only the film festival, through attendance, but will be helping women and children who are homeless or at risk of being homeless become self-reliant.   There is an alarming number of women and children who fall into this category and Indigo Moon Film Festival is thrilled to help be part of the solution

Connections of Cumberland County’s slogan of “Connecting to Improve Lives” dovetails nicely with the GroundSwell and Indigo Moon Film Festival’s belief that  “Film Inspires Change.” Through this partnership, we believe we can help bring even more positive change in our community.

GroundSwell Pictures seeks to engage and inspire diverse communities by producing films, showing films, teaching filmmaking and supporting films that make a positive difference and enrich the community through cultural arts. The film festival is one program of work of GroundSwell.

Indigo Moon Film Festival is October 11-13, 2019 in historic downtown Fayetteville, NC.  The festival was started in 2015 to fill a need for this under-represented cultural art in this region.  An Opening Night Film and Reception on Friday provides the kick off for the festival. On Saturday, IMFF brings in more than 80 films from around the world to screen in 4 walkable venues. Filmmakers provide insight during post-screening Q&A sessions.  The Awards Banquet is held on Sunday and acknowledges filmmakers with six Jury Awards and six Audience Awards. An encore screening of the Jury Award winning films follows. See more at

Connections of Cumberland County developed as a result of research conducted by the Women’s Giving Circle of Cumberland County on the basic needs of local women and children. This research revealed an alarming number of homeless women and children in our county.  The founders made a commitment to implement a day resource center with case management, skills development and collaborative community resources. This model prevents the unnecessary duplication of services and provides a “one-stop shop” approach for women and children who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. In July of 2014, Connections of Cumberland County opened its doors to women and children and began improving lives.


What a great festival and an amazing line-up of films!!  Congratulations to everyone who had a film selected for the festival 

Trying to choose the top film in a category is challenging at best.  Films were rated on Originality, Creativity, Writing, Directing, Cinematography, Performances, Production Value, Pacing, Sound and Music.  We received hundreds of films and each one was viewed by at least two judges and received scores in each area.  

Here are the Juried Award Winners for 2018:

Juried Award for Student Film goes to LENS FLARE. (Filmmaker Christopher Morabito )

Juried Award for Animation goes to WE WILL SEE SOMEDAY.  (Filmmaker Nari Hong)

 Juried Award for Documentary Short goes to ROBESON RISES.  Director Michael Pogoloff


The Juried Award for Documentary Feature goes to UP TO SNUFF. Filmmaker Mark Maxey 

The Juried Award for Best Narrative Short goes to LABORATORY CONDITIONS Filmmaker Jocelyn Statmat. 

The Juried Award for Best Narrative Feature is Awarded to OCCUPANTS Filmmaker Russell Emanuel

Congratulations to all the Juried Award Winners!

And now, the Audience Awards!

At every screening of every film audience members had the opportunity to tell us which films they thought were the best. Audience Award Winners will receive a framed laurel leaf and a cash award! Thanks to everyone who voted and shared your opinion about this year’s selections. We’ve tallied the votes and here are your choices for the best films of the festival.

Now, here are the results for our 2018 Audience Awards.

Audience Award For Best Student Film: The Little Dictator Filmmaker Emanuel Cohn

Audience Award For Best Animation: Future World – Filmmaker Christopher Angus

Audience Award For Best Documentary Short: Calcutta Mercy Filmmaker – Jeremiah McLamb

Audience Award For Best Documentary Feature: Getting Over – Filmmaker Jason Charnick

Audience Award For Best Narrative Short: Conversation with a Cigarette – Filmmaker Russell Brown

Audience Award For Best Narrative Feature: 27 West – Filmmaker Tait Colberg


Look for more incredible films in 2019!



On August 31, IMFF organizers announced the line-up for the 2018 festival.


Indigo Moon Film Festival


Hundreds of people flock to the Indigo Moon Film Festival each year to watch great new films from around the world.  In doing so, a lot of garbage is created.  Just think of all the printed materials, water bottles, food containers and carbon emissions from the travel to get here.

To combat these issues, Indigo Moon Film Festival, in partnership with PWC and Sustainable Sandhills, is going green in 2018!

First, we will rely on recycling, composting, carbon credits and other means to cut down on our carbon footprint. 

IMFF will create areas for recycling and composting throughout the festival footprint.  A “Green Team” provided through a partnership with Sustainable Sandhills will disperse throughout the festival to ensure that items are deposited in the correct bins. In addition, food vendors will provide compostable and recyclable tableware including forks, knives, plates, etc.  Oh, no straws either!

Sustainable Sandhills will host the “Green Venue” on the  5th floor of the Self Help Credit union.  Films with an environmental theme will be shown there during the festival.  Adjacent to the Green Venue will be the Green Demonstration Area. Look here for information and freebies from environmental groups from across the region.

You can help Indigo Moon turn green by parking your car in for free in downtown Fayetteville and walking between venues.  Indigo Moon Film Festival is proud to partner with PWC and Sustainable Sandhills to help save our corner of the earth.

About GroundSwell Pictures

GroundSwell Pictures is a non-profit in Fayetteville North Carolina that seeks to engage and inspire diverse communities by producing films, showing films, teaching filmmaking and supporting films that make a positive difference and enrich the community through cultural arts. Indigo Moon Film Festival is a program of GroundSwell Pictures.

About Sustainable Sandhills

Sustainable Sandhills is a tiny environmental nonprofit with a giant mission- to save the planet and preserve the environment of the Sandhills through education, demonstration and collaboration.  Our mission is fulfilled through five core program areas: Clean Air, Clean Water, Green Schools, Local Food, and Green Business. We work as change agents to empower youth, combat climate change and demand stronger protection for our environment. 

About PWC

PWC is proud to be Fayetteville’s Hometown Utility and provide the highest quality and reliable electric, water and sewer services with rates that are among the lowest in the state.  As a public power provider, PWC is customer-focused, locally owned & operated and takes pride in being a good neighbor who is committed to quality services, reliability, conservation, safety and the environment.    PWC is proud to be Fayetteville’s Hometown Utility and provide the highest quality and reliable electric, water and sewer services with rates that are among the lowest in the state.  As a public power provider, PWC is customer-focused, locally owned & operated and takes pride in being a good neighbor who is committed to quality services, reliability, conservation, safety and the environment. PWC will also be sponsoring a sustainable video contest, with the public choosing the winners through online voting and winning entries being shown during the festival.  Details to be announced soon.


For additional information contact: Pat Wright (p) 910.309.6580 (e)


Indigo Moon Film Festival Film Reveal

Indigo Moon Film Festival Announces Films for 2017

Indigo Moon Film Festival is pleased to announce the the films that will show during the 2017 festival, October 13-15, 2017

Each film that was submitted was reviewed by a panel of judges.  The 46 films selected represent the best of the best from around the world.  

For a full description of each film and the schedule, click here.

Many Filmmakers will be present after the film to participate in a Q&A.   Festival attendees are encouraged to make their selections quickly as some films and events are sure to sell out.

Indigo Moon Film Festival 2017 Dates Set

Indigo Moon Film Festival is pleased to announce the dates of the 2017 festival as October 13-15, 2017.  Filmmakers and audiences from around the world will gather in Historic Downtown Fayetteville for three days of fun, films and friends.  “This year will be even bigger and better!” according to festival organizers. Certainly NOT having a hurricane will make a huge difference!  The Farmers Almanac predicts cooler than normal temperatures and average rainfall. This would bode well for IMFF 2017.

Selected Films will be announced September 1 at a special announcement event, open to the public. Stay tuned for more information.

IMFF 2016 Album (with Hurricane Matthew)

 Indigo Moon Film Festival Announces Encore Showings


Review of Indigo Moon Film Festival

falseby Wendy Keeling

  • This first year festival was well planned. The communication with filmmakers was great. From my arrival to the festival it was obvious that they had put a great deal of love in the fest. Great films were selected. They had a fantastic opening party with red carpet opportunities, adult beverages, and amazing food. Unfortunately the unexpected disruption by Hurricane Matthew put a damper on the weekend. Due to severe flooding and power outages they were forced to cancel the event. Even then I was made to feel safe and welcome. Even with the difficulties of their inaugural festival I highly recommend submitting to them. I cannot wait to see what they can do next year!!

BETHEL: A light in the storm



Having lived in Ohio most of my life, I had no experience with hurricanes before Matthew hit last weekend. If not for the kindness of strangers, I don’t know how I would have endured the flooding.

On Saturday morning of the storm, I arrived in downtown Fayetteville with my 11-month-old daughter. We were there for the inaugural Indigo Moon Film Festival, where my documentary “Radioactive Veteran” was scheduled to play.

My plan was to participate in a brief Q&A after the screening and mingle for a bit with other filmmakers. I brought my daughter along mostly to give my spouse some time off. Of course, I also knew audiences love babies, and we were hoping for an audience award, after all.

Not long after we arrived, however, the power started going out in the downtown area. The inland effects of Matthew had become much worse than anticipated, and the festival’s prospects were looking bleak. When one of the festival’s main venues lost power, we knew the festival was over.

About a dozen festival volunteers and filmmakers gathered with us at the festival’s base of operations in a gallery next to the theater, which still had power. Soon, folks started getting text messages and phone calls saying that streets were flooding. A few people left in an attempt to get home, but they were forced to return within a few minutes. Our street was high enough to be safe, but many of the streets leaving downtown were underwater.

As we faced the realization that we had nowhere to go, the power in our building went out, too.

At that point, my only concern was taking care of my daughter. I didn’t have enough milk or diapers to last the night, and she had never been away from her mother that long.

Fortunately for us, we were surrounded by some of the kindest people I’ve ever met. A volunteer named Diane lived a couple blocks away, and she braved the rain and wind to fetch some milk for us. She also called a neighbor who later brought us diapers and baby food. Other volunteers collected soft food and makeshift toys from within the building. An attendee named Linda offered to share her hotel room four miles away if she could find a safe way there. Everyone remaining was more than willing to entertain a curious baby over the next several hours.

We were strangers to this group of people, but they made us feel like family.

After the rain subsided early that evening, Linda set out and found a safe way to the hotel. We joined her soon after. The hotel had no power and no water, but we at least had a bed to sleep on. We rested that night and returned home safely the next morning.

Not everyone caught in the flooding has been as lucky as we were. The death toll is at 20 and climbing. Our state now desperately needs more of the kindness my daughter and I received from the folks at the Indigo Moon Film Festival. That kindness was a light for us on a stormy day, and communities across eastern North Carolina are still in need of such light.

As the state deals with the hurricane’s aftermath in the coming weeks, let us shine brighter than we ever have.

Bradley Bethel is a documentary filmmaker and former teacher who lives in Mebane.

Filmmakers Awarded “Survivor Laurel”


Thanks to all the filmmakers who came to the inaugural Indigo Moon Film Festival and  hung in there with us!

You deserve an award! We hope you display it with pride!

And we hope to see all of you back next year: October 13-15, 2017.



Long before the Indigo Moon Film Festival began, our Jury of film experts had already watched and judged all the films that were “Official Selections.” There were so many great films and choosing the best in each category was difficult. Thank you to the jury members and Congratulations to the following films and filmmakers!

Best Narrative Feature – Nessun Dorma
Best Narrative Short – The Telegram Man
Best Documentary Feature – My Love Affair with the Brain
Best Documentary Short – The 100 Years Show
Best Animation – The Orchestra
Best Student Film – One Day on Carver Street

We will be sending these beautiful trophies to you soon.

Filmmakers who braved the storm and stuck it out with us will also be receiving SPECIAL recognition…. stand by!



Some of you have been wondering how the inaugural Indigo Moon Film Festival went… Well, we had two uninvited guests…. Matthew and Nicole.

When we started the festival, we were expecting 5-6 inches of rain and light breezes. Well, Hurricane Nicole pushed Hurricane Matthew farther inland and held him over Fayetteville long enough to get a ton of water. more than 15 inches. Lots of flooding, dams breaking and people stranded in cars. Some people around the region have even died because of the storm.

We were fortunate, we lost power and had to stop the festival mid-way through Saturday’s screenings. But some of our friends and neighbors lost everything.

We will be announcing the Jury Award Winners tomorrow. There is no way to give audience awards since not every film was even screened. But we will be sending a very special award to all the filmmakers who came out and stayed with us through the rain, wind and dark.

It will be a festival none of us will ever forget.