Heartland Film Festival has announced its lineup for its 28th Annual Film Festival — which runs October 10-20.

The festival will open with the much-anticipated Tom Hanks-as-Fred Rogers biopic A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, playing at Newfields on Thursday, Oct. 10. The closing-night film will be the Bryan Stevenson biopic Just Mercy, starring Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Foxx and Brie Larson, which will screen at Newfields on Sunday, Oct. 20.

In the interim between those two films, Heartland will present more than 200 narrative and documentary features at several locations around Indianapolis — including Newfields, AMC Castleton Square 14, and AMC Traders Point 12.

Additional programming will take place at the Historic Artcraft Theatre in Franklin, Ind.

Full programming information can be found at https://heartlandfilm.org/.

A few highlights:

THE MUMMY (1999) — FRIDAY, OCT. 11

Heartland will welcome Indianapolis-born actor Brendan Frasier for a 20th-anniversary screening of 1999’s The Mummy, followed by a Q&A with journalist Pete Hammond of Deadline. (Newfields)


Noah Baumbach’s much-lauded drama — in which Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver (who formerly lived in Indiana) portray a couple going through a divorce — comes to Heartland ahead of its release on Netflix later this year. (Newfields)


Also ahead of its Netflix release later this year comes this comedy-drama from director Fernando Meirelles (City of God), in which Anthony Hopkins portrays Pope Benedict XVI and Jonathan Pryce plays the future Pope Francis. (AMC Castleton Square 14)


Heartland will present this horror story about a haunted dress from acclaimed director Peter Strickland (Berberian Sound System, The Duke of Burgundy) as a special presentation at a time, date and location to be determined.

This will be the inaugural screening in Heartland Horror — a subset of the festival announced this year, which will have a presence at both the Indy Shorts and Heartland Film Festival in 2020.

Evan Dossey and Sam Watermeier of Midwest Film Journal are collaborating with the Heartland Film Festival to curate the Heartland Horror series

“We’re aiming to find the best new films — feature-length or short — that the genre has to offer from around the world and present them for next year’s festival audience,” Dossey says.

Submission requirements and prize details will be announced at a future date.


  • 17 Blocks (dir. Davy Rothbart)
  • Ernie & Joe (dir. Jenifer McShane)
  • For Sama (dir. Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts)
  • Jump Shot (dir. Jacob Hamilton)
  • Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements (dir. Irene Taylor Brodsky)

All finalists will screen multiple times throughout the festival.


  • Colewell (dir. Tom Quinn)
  • The Garden Left Behind (dir. Flavio Alves)
  • Greener Grass (dir. Jocelyn deBoer, Dawn Luebbe)
  • Guest Artist (dir. Timothy Busfield)
  • House of Hummingbird (dir. Bora Kim).

All finalists will screen multiple times throughout the festival.


Heartland will honor British director Michael Apted with a Heartland International Film Festival Lifetime Achievement Award in addition to screening 63 Up, his most recent in the Up series that began in 1964 and has followed 14 children from ages 7 to, now, 63. Apted will be in attendance at the Festival for the screening. Actress Cloris Leachman will also be awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award, and will be in attendance via video message.

With over 200 films screening this year, Heartland Film Festival is presenting its boldest line-up yet. In addition to Heartland Horror, Midwest Film Journal will continue to provide coverage of films playing throughout the festival to help inform your viewing choices. It’s an embarrassment of riches this year.