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Chicago Southland International Film Festival announces move to spring season

April 2024 to be next festival

Information provided by Governors State University

UNIVERSITY PARK, Ill. (February 26, 2023) – The Chicago Southland International Film Festival, presented by Governors State University, announced that their annual flagship event will now take place in the spring. After a successful festival in October 2022, which saw record attendance, the sixth annual festival will be held in April 2024.

“It was great to see a boost in turnout after a sluggish return to in-person events following COVID-19,” said Joshua Young, Co-Founder and Programming & Operations Manager for the festival. “We were delighted to see more filmmakers and community members coming out to support each other. We received an incredible amount of positive feedback this year.”

Despite the increase in attendance and positive feedback from filmmakers and attendees, Young and the festival committee felt that the busy fall festival scene in Chicagoland as well as the robust fall campus events calendar made it clear that a move was necessary.

But the festival organizers aren’t concerned with losing momentum.

“We saw a significant increase in community and on campus partners this year. We have a list of potential screenings to host throughout this next calendar year and have collaborators lined up to sponsor and participate,” Young said.

One such screening is an encore showing of episodes from Bruce Orenstein’s five-part documentary series The Shame of Chicago: The Segregation of an American City in partnership with Chicago South Side Film Festival and the Social Work Program at Governors State University. The Shame of Chicago series explores the origins of the city’s wealth gap between Black and White residents.

The festival programming team is focused on showcasing films that tell local stories or are made by regional filmmakers for the Feature Film Showcase and screening series. Past films include the Oscar and Emmy nominated, Peabody Award-winning film Minding the Gap by Director Bing Liu of Kartemquin Films in Chicago.

The festival organizers are excited to bring an even more dynamic lineup of films and events to the community. More information about the festival’s schedule and programming will be released in the coming months.

For more information and updates, visit the Chicago Southland International Film Festival website at

Josh Bootsma
Josh Bootsma
Josh is Managing Editor at The Lansing Journal and believes in the power and purpose of community news. He covers any local topics—from village government to theatre, from business openings to migratory birds.