Press Release | Announcing 2023 Film Festival

Media Contact:

Courtney Young 

Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park

Phone: 843-255-7301



2023 Historic Mitchelville Film Festival: Celebrating Black Creativity, Resilience, and Resistance through Cinema

Hilton Head Island, October 5, 2023 – Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park is proud to present the highly anticipated 2023 Historic Mitchelville Film Festival, in honor of their 161st Anniversary, a two-day cinematic event “Celebrating Black Creativity, Resilience, and Resistance through Cinema.” This landmark event will take place on October 25th and 26th from 5:00-8:00pm at Coligny Theatre on Hilton Head Island.

Honoring African American History and Excellence

The 2023 Historic Mitchelville Film Festival is dedicated to honoring the incredible history, creativity, and indomitable spirit of the African American community. Through the powerful medium of cinema, the festival will showcase a captivating mix of short and long-form films that highlight the diverse experiences, struggles, and triumphs of the black community through an individual and collective lens.

Empowering Stories of Resilience and Triumph

The festival’s carefully curated selection of films will provide a platform for the untold stories of African American creativity, resilience, and resistance. From historical struggles against oppression to contemporary narratives of empowerment, these films will showcase the strength and determination of the Black community throughout history.

October 25th-Night One

Join filmmakers, Neema Griffin, Erase, and Jon-Sesrie Goff, After Sherman, for a discussion about their lowcountry roots and how they explored their connection through film with Bridgette Fraizer serving as moderator. 


 After hearing an intriguing story about the people of Igbo Landing, Griffin’s search for more turns up little. Her research jumps from internet research to an investigation to discover, or uncover, this little-known African-American story.


Filmmaker Jon-Sesrie Goff returns to the coastal South Carolina land that his family purchased after emancipation. His desire to explore his Gullah/Geechee roots leads to a poetic investigation of Black inheritance, trauma, and generational wisdom, amidst the tensions that have shaped American history. In the wake of recent Southern violence, After Sherman is a reclamation of Black life and space.

October 26th-Night Two

Bridgette Frazier will serve as moderator for discussion between panelists and special guests: Dr. Emory Campbell, local author and historian, Kamau Sadiki, Clotilda explorer from Diving with a Purpose, and Veda Rose Robbins, a Clotilda descendant, on the impacts and importance of the discovery and legacy of the last known slave ship to cross the Middle Passage from Africa to America. 


In DESCENDANT, award-winning filmmaker Margaret Brown returns to her hometown of Mobile, Alabama, to document the search for and historic discovery of The Clotilda, the last known ship to arrive in the United States, illegally carrying 110 kidnapped Africans.

Join Us at the 2023 Historic Mitchelville Film Festival

This remarkable event is open to film enthusiasts, history buffs, and all those who wish to celebrate the rich cultural legacy of African Americans. The 2023 Historic Mitchelville Film Festival will be held at the iconic Coligny Theatre, offering an intimate cinematic experience that is not to be missed.

Ticket Information:

Single-Day Pass: $30

Two-Day Pass: $50


Coligny Theatre 1 N Forest Beach Drive, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928


5:00 pm Reception

6:00 pm Films Begin

Each night of the film festival will begin with a reception hosted by Hilton Head Island MLK Committee for Justice at 5:00pm. The film screenings will begin at 6:00pm. 

Link to Purchase Tickets

Tickets for the Historic Mitchelville Film Festival 2023 are available for purchase at Be sure to secure your spot early for this extraordinary cinematic celebration of Black creativity, resilience, and resistance.

About Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park:

Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park is a cherished cultural landmark located on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, dedicated to preserving and celebrating the history of Mitchelville, a significant community founded by formerly enslaved individuals in 1862. The park aims to promote human understanding and foster just communities through the exploration of arts, culture, and history. To learn more about the park’s initiatives and projects, visit


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