DIVERSE, ENGAGED, & in their prime


For a third year running, nearly 20,000 nabbed a seat to see films at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, flooding downtown and bringing significant economic impact over ten days during a typically slow shoulder season. In 2018 Big Sky saw an uptick in pass sales, indicating that more attendees are opting for an immersive experience and attending more festival events over more days. There was also an increase in out-of-town attendees, including visiting audience, filmmakers and industry from 24 states and 10 countries including Mexico, Qatar, Germany, The Netherlands, Ukraine, Canada, Egypt, Australia and the United Kingdom. 

The BSDFF audience continues to trend in the highly educated demographic, with over 80% in their earning prime age and over a third holding a post graduate degree. Three quarters attend events on three or more days of the festival, and the majority of BSDFF attendees report that they'll attend future events. The BSDFF audience continues to be overwhelmingly loyal and engaged, a unique quality that is noticed and adored by out of town visitors who are beginning to put a visit to Missoula in their annual plan.

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BSDFF education programs reached over 4,000 students in 2018 including 43 filmmaker visits to 33 schools, 280 youngsters attending Schoolhouse Docs after school programming, a field trip for 595 spirited 6th graders to the MCT Center for the Performing arts in partnership with the SPARK! program, and 760 students engaged with the Native Filmmaker Initiative Film Club that took Indigenous films to classrooms across Montana.



With nearly 20,000 in attendance in 2018, the digital ad reel garnered 27,176 impressions and print ads reached 8,000+ pairs of eyes. BSDFF saw a spike in social engagement, with over 387,000 social impressions in Q1 and a 4% increase in followers. Our sponsors are our partners, and we're proud to provide a unique and valuable opportunity for our supporters to reach festival attendees.

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In the news

BSDFF is honored to be selected for the third time in four years by MovieMaker Magazine's coveted list of "50 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee." Further proof of Big Sky's devotion to the art, impact and creators of documentary film, the MovieMaker list helps BSDFF attract world class documentary film to Missoula, Montana each February. Submissions for 2019 open in May, we can't wait to begin programming for next year!