Indie Grits

A history of Indie Grits.


The Indie Grits Festival was a multi-day event that saw an average of over 12,000 visitors from 2013 to 2019. It was the premier multi-day film festival focusing on documentary, experimental, and hybrid films in the Southeast, US. The Indie Grits Festival was organized by Indie Grits Labs, a nonprofit organization that works to serve communities through media education, artist-driven projects, and the Indie Grits Film Festival. The spirit of Indie Grits comes from the heart of its host, the Nickelodeon Theatre — South Carolina’s only nonprofit, art house theatre – affectionately known as “The Nick.”

Propelled by an inclusive artistic vision, festival organizers sought to break down the walls of accessibility intimidating Southern media makers by creating exhibition opportunities for filmmakers and their work often overlooked elsewhere. We hosted a wide range of cultural events featuring the very best of art, music, and experimental media from across the Southeast.


Filmmakers come first. In 2019 we launched Filmmaker Focus, a new, FREE series of programs open to the public, aimed at supporting filmmakers currently working in the documentary and the doc-narrative hybrid field. Indie Grits identified the need to be more than an exhibitor of emerging and established Southern voices. We are working to create an open space for dialogue and collaboration in which filmmakers can find support in every level of their projects from pre-production to post. Work-in-progress screenings, panels, workshops, and more truly made this festival track a unique, resourceful experience for filmmakers and film-lovers alike.


The festival was run by a small, talented and dedicated staff which was artist-led by Southern filmmakers and media artists, who were committed to inclusive, accountable storytelling. There are so many amazing stories, projects, and movements happening in the Southeast that are beginning to tear down decades of stereotypes and misconceptions about our region. With the Indie Grits Film Festival, The Nickelodeon aimed to speed this process, amplify movements, motivate change, and create new paths forward for our country as a whole.


It is a mission The Nick still believes in and will be represented in future programming.