Thin Line Film Fest is Texas' International Documentary Film Festival held annually the second week of February in downtown Denton. Thin Line is the only documentary film festival in Texas screening more documentaries than SXSW! The 2013 festival dates are February 8-18. The event is held over two weekends, typically beginning on Friday night and ending during the day on Monday (President's Day). Thin Line brings the biggest and most relevant documentary films from around the world to North Texas. Many films are accompanied by their filmmakers, contributing to the overall festival experience. Other activities include workshops, panels, the Docu-Denton 7K, and plenty of parties with local food, music, and art. Most films screen inside the Campus Theatre at 214 Hickory St, however various other downtown venues are used each year. Thin Line accepts film submissions June 1st - mid-November via their website. Anyone can submit a film; local filmmakers are especially encouraged to submit.

In the fall of 2012, Thin Line Film Fest began the Thin Line Fall Series - a monthly screening series of award-winning documentaries held at the Fine Arts Theater (115 N. Elm St). Screenings are held through December on each Second Saturday.


Thin Line Film Fest is a program of Texas Filmmakers, a 501(c)(3) non-profit media arts education organization based in Denton, TX and founded in 2004. Texas Filmmakers is managed by a Board of Directors made up of committed volunteers.

Docu-Denton 7K

The Docu-Denton 7K is a documentary video race in which teams of any size draw a random topic on which they must complete a short documentary in five days. All completed films are screened the second Saturday of the festival and a winner is selected by an independent jury. Anyone can register and all teams are invited to an all-day documentary workshop held just before the start of the race.

Festival History

(sourced from

YEAR 1: Aug 30 - Sep 2, 2007

Our motto was "go big or go home." We decided early on that we needed to distinguish ourselves as a major event. That included seven venues, four parties, nearly 60 films, an educational conference, and a trade show! It was an intense few days. Several dozen filmmakers came from around the world to participate in their screenings and they were joined by industry professionals from around the state imparting their wisdom at the conference. We received quite a bit of attention throughout the Dallas / Fort Worth metroplex including a major spread in the Fort Worth Star Telegram.

YEAR 2: Sep 24 - 28, 2008

Round 2 saw a stronger focus on quality over quantity with fewer films but stronger titles such as More Shoes, Nerdore Rising, and Girl 27. The festival also saw bigger crowds and even more attention from area media outlets. We were lucky enough to screen the World Premiere of Interrogate This: Psychologists Take on Terror; and the festival welcomed dozens of filmmakers from around the country to celebrate documentaries with our growing local fanbase.

YEAR 3: Feb 17 - 21, 2010

Afer two years in September we realized there was too much local/regional competition. We settled on February - a bold move. This would make us one of the first festivals of the year in Texas; before SXSW, and before Dallas International. 2010 turned out to be a huge year for Thin Line with record attendance and record sales. The festival opened with the Texas Premiere of Gas Land with Director Josh Fox in attendance. Also at that screening were the EPA Regional Director Dr. Al Armendariz, several gas industry representatives, and many frustrated regional land owners. It was a lively event! Other big screenings included the Texas Premiere of the Oscar-nominated The Most Dangerous Man in America, as well as Oscar-nominated Burma VJ and the Oscar-winning The Cove.

 YEAR 4: Feb 15 - 20, 2011

In 2011 we opened on Wednesday instead of Thursday giving us an extra day of programming. We also reduced our number of venues so that every attendee could see every screening. We opened the festival with the Texas Premiere of Troubadours, a music doc fresh from its Sundance World Premiere. The screening was attended by Director Morgan Neville and Producer Eddie Schmidt. Also this year we welcomed comedian/actor Harry Shearer and his documentary The Big Uneasy. Other notable screenings included the Texas Premieres of Enemies of the People and This Way of Life.

YEAR 5: Feb 10 - 20, 2012

The biggest change in 2012 was the expanded schedule. We added the previous weekend to our schedule and included Monday Presidents Day for a ten-day festival! That meant we could screen more documentaries than ever before; a total of 75! We also added a smaller and more intimate venue as well as four more parties. Another special edition for 2012 was the DocuDenton 7K - a five-day documentary video race in which teams must create a short documentary on a random topic in under five days. All of this excitement surrounded many big films such as the Texas Premiere of Battle for Brooklyn attended by Director/Producer Suki Hawley. Other notable screenings included BuckJane's Journey, and Nostalgia for the Light.