Newburyport Documentary Film Festival 2020

Newburyport Documentary Film Festival 2020

The 2020 Newburyport Documentary Film Festival

In consideration of the ongoing concerns regarding large gatherings due to the COVID-19 situation, the NBPT Docu Fest (NDFF) has decided to shift this September’s festival to a virtual screening format.  With that in mind, the organizers have worked hard to make it as memorable and rewarding as possible.  

, “As a member of this vibrant Arts Community we are adjusting to the challenges of the situation as we remain committed to our mission of providing the highest caliber documentaries to the Newburyport area and beyond." Executive Director Joanne Morris

The festival this year runs over a full week but while we with a more limited selection of films, the quality of films are possibly the highest ever. We carefully selected films that would entertain, engage, challenge and educate the Newburyport audience.

This year you can watch the films at any time during the week long festival with a single scheduled live event to interview the filmmakers.

The 2020 Virtual Festival

This year everything is different, we are going virtual and broadcasting films to your homes via the internet. Something else that is new is that films are available for the full week, September 18-24th.

You can watch the films at any time and as many times as you'd like during the festival on a computer, tablet, phone or by broadcasting to your TV. Note: broadcasting to your TV can take a few steps to work out, we have a separate page on this task but it can be done for most people.

Key Pages and Links

Below are some links to our festival site for pages within that we think you might like to explore. The films in the festival are also listed a little further down this page. Also on this page and below the film posters, we have a list of Frequently Asked Questions.

We know you may have a lot of questions about how it all works.  But if you have another unanswered question, please use the Contact link at the top of those page and send that to us. Every question helps us add more content so you will be doing us and fellow viewers a favor.

Virtual Festival Site

Festival Film Guide

Festival Live Q/A Schedule

My Festival Tickets

My Festival Pass

Contact Us

Technical Help

The films listed for this year's festival can be viewed below. You can click on a film poster to see more about the film.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are LIVE Q&A Events/Sessions?

Every feature film and short film block has a dedicated time slot for a LIVE Q&A session with filmmakers, directors and sometimes the film protagonists. These sessions are designed to explore deeper into the film including the original motivations, lessons learned and challenges in making the film. Our moderator will also take questions from the audience via chat to pu to the guests. The Live Q&A is available at no extra charge for ticket holders.

The Live Q&A Session uses Zoom but will appear in the same page and window as the film so you just need to return to the film page if you watched in advance or stay on if you plan to watch the film and Q&A in one sitting.

. Simply select the "livestream" from the right sidebar and then click “enter livestream” at the designated time. There is a countdown clock on the livestream window to let you know when it will start.

All Q&A sessions (also called livestreams) are recorded and available to ticket holders for the duration of the program availability window. So if you watch the film later in the week or cannot make the Live Event time, the recorded live session will be available.

What is the Recommended Viewing Time?

All films are available to watch anytime during the festival Week (Sept 18-24) but if you'd prefer to watch the film followed immediately by the Live Q&A session we have a recommended time (or Showcase). You can, of course, watch the film earlier (or later) and still attend the Live session. You can even rewatch the film or parts of the film to get ready for the Q/A.

Where/How Can I Watch my Film?

You can watch content on PCs running Windows 7+, and Intel-based Macs running macOS 10.12+. You can also watch films on Android tablets and phones using Chrome, and on iPhones and iPads using Safari.

If you have an Apple TV or Roku device, you can use specific apps for these platforms. If you have a (Google) Chromecast, you can "cast" from Chrome on your computer or Android phone.

You can also connect an HDMI cable between your computer and the TV.

Let us be clear, the process to watch on a TV can be tricky and should be setup in advance to reduce frustrations, we have created a separate page for TV Connect instructions.

For connecting to a TV click here

However you plan to watch, we highly recommend you test your device in advance:

Visit our Device Compatibility page and follow the steps to unlock our free test video.

1. This will test your device(s) for compatibility with our platform

2. Confirm that you are able to make a purchase (it is a free purchase and no credit card is required)

3. Confirm that you can receive confirmation emails once a purchase has been completed. (The process will generate a zero dollar ticket receipt and link to the test film).

What is my Userid? How do I register/log on?

When you first pay for a film or a pass, you will be asked to register. You may do that using an email/password or with use of your Facebook account. You must use the same method to watch the films you've paid for.

If you have trouble, please confirm that you are logged in with the same email address or Facebook login you used to purchase the program. The login link can be found at the upper right corner of the screen, or if you are not logged in, you’ll be prompted to login after clicking “unlock now” on a film.

If you still cannot access your content, visit to verify that you’ve unlocked the program and access it from there.

How Do I Find My Film?

If you've already unlocked the movie, visit your Content Library and you should see the film there. You will need to log in first.

If you're on another device, you can also check your email inbox for the order confirmation email and click the “watch now” button.

Or visit the Newburyport Documentary Festival page ( festival page and click on the original listing for the movie. If you’ve already ordered a ticket with your logged in account, you will have the option to “watch now” from the virtual screening page.

All-Access Festival Passes

An All-Access Pass gives you the right to watch every film and attend every Live Q&A session, this applies to feature films and and short films. An All-Access Pass costs $45. This includes all additional charges such as credit card/service and convenience fees.

To use your pass, when logged into your account, click on “Pre-Order Now” or “Unlock Now”. Your pass benefits will be automatically applied.

To buy a pass visit Festival Passes

Here is a good video on the topic from out partners at the Manitoba Gimli Film Festival who are using the same platform.

How to Use a Festival Pass

Single Film/Short Block Tickets

A single film ticket cost $8 and that is per device and not per person.  No additional charges or credit card/service or convenience fees are applied.

To Buy a Ticket, select a film from the Film Guide and then "Select a Showing" (there will only be one showing available) and on the next page you can pre-order (if you purchase before the festival) or order during Festival Week. You can watch anytime during Festival Week.

To buy a ticket visit the Film Guide

Here is a good video on the topic from out partners at the Manitoba Gimli Film Festival who are using the same platform.

How to Buy and Use a Festival Ticket


You will be asked to support the Newburyport Documentary Film Festival. This is entirely optional but if you do dontae a charitable deduction receipt will be emailed as the Festival is a registered non-profit organization.

Geo Fences/Blocking

We never thought we would be talking about Geo Fencing but here we are - 2020. This strange term is used to describe the situation when a film views are limited by geography. Some distributors and filmmakers seek to restrict access outside of the natural watch area of the festival. This is a natural concern as they struggle to gain distribution in the absence of theatres,.

You will find any restrictions on the film purchase page. If there are restriction on a film (Walrus and The Whistle Blower and Death by Dope fall into this restriction) at our festival that will be limited to New England. Geography for those interested in determined by the IP address of your device and yes, it does detect when you are using a VPN to mask your location.

How Long do I have to Watch a Movie?

All films are available to Start Watching (Watch Now) for the duration of the festival (Sept 18-24)

Once you unlock the movie (Start Watching), an indication will show you how much time is left to finish. You can fast forward, rewind, re-watch at any time.

Can I Rewind and Start the Film Again ?

Yes, you have complete access to the entire program during your watch window.

Ballots and Votes

All films are available to score and rate and we do encourage you to do so. This is a very important part of the festival and is highly valued by filmmakers that use festivals to gauge interest. The balloting can be found on the same window/page as you watched the film and you can return to that page anytime during the festival to cast your ballot.

Need More Help?

You can call or text local help through the Festival hotline (978) 572 0993- this number is on the top of our website (


Visit Eventive's help page and click on the "launch live support' link to enter Eventive's live chat support.

<a id="eventive-embed" href="">View Newburyport Documentary Film Festival 2020 film guide.</a><script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>