Mission – The Gary International Black Film Festival uses film as a catalyst for positive cultural activity to enhance the ‘cultural capital’ of our hometown of Gary, IN by celebrating black culture through independent film and discussion. It is our goal to bring films of the highest quality that are not seen at the local multiplex that reflect the depth and transcendence of black people.

Vision – To help build a rich, sustainable cultural community driven by enjoyment of African Diaspora film that provides artistic, economic and community building opportunities. We want to make Gary, IN a destination for filmmakers seeking to share handcrafted independent films with loving audiences and provide  local artists, creatives and small business people meaningful, mutual benefit.

People – The Gary International Black Film Festival is run by a committed core of community volunteers who work year round to bring this powerful weekend of independent Black cinema to life. 

Be a part of our growing community. Sign up for our newsletter, follow us on social media and become a part of our community through our online portal – Virtual Gary


The Gary International Black Film Festival (GIBFF) is a dynamic weekend cinema feast located just 30 minutes from downtown Chicago in Gary, IN. The GIBFF brings filmmakers and engaged audiences together for a powerful weekend of indie Black Cinema. Our annual festival is held in October featuring independent films, panel discussions, workshops, parties and awards for excellence in  filmmaking.

Our festival is currently accepting submissions for our annual festival with over 1,400 festival fans, filmmakers, film scholars and industry professionals. Click below to enter.

Accepted films are eligible for year round exposure through our Virtual Gary portal – featuring intimate filmmaker chats, critical conversations with experts at the frontlines of culture and select local screenings that highlight the works of featured filmmakers.


Everybody counts. This cultural asset is built by the people who create hand-crafted films, film lovers, and audiences from around the country. In 2019, audiences for the festival hailed from 31 different zipcodes in Indiana, Chicago and south suburbs and across the globe with our virtual content. Festival impact goes beyond the three day event and throughout our year round programming both online and in the community.

Exposure in this festival puts our sponsors and partners in the vanguard with films from emerging and established filmmakers whose award winning work is featured around the globe. 

Donations – Gifts to the festival are the engine that allows us to pay artists, secure resources from local vendors and provide economic impact to our hometown. 

To sponsor the festival click below:


Virtual Gary - Get Inside (virtual) Film. Get Outside Yourself. A community gathering space. A place where we can watch a movie together, laugh, cry, learn and get together in the comfort of our living rooms. A place where we can throw shade without disturbing the whole theater. ‘Cause you know how we like to talk through the whole film. How to participate: Each week, we will highlight a film, invite a few folks to join us to chat about the film and you can join the conversation live, online in real time! And if you stay ready, you don’t have to get ready. Make sure you have the following apps installed on your phone, computer or tablet: