Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

Here Come the Videofreex

Year: 2015
Country: United States
Run Time: 79 minutes

Here Come the Videofreex
Here Come the Videofreex
Here Come the Videofreex

In the age of Youtube, where everyone with a smart phone can shoot video, it’s hard to imagine a time where such a concept was rare. It wasn’t until the late 60s that portable recording was available. In 1969, a progressive CBS executive discovered a group of renegade reporters using the medium to document the counterculture. Believing the network should be covering such topics, he hired the ten-person collective, known as Videofreex, to capture the counterculture for a new show. With financial backing from CBS, they traveled the United States, scoring interviews with such activists as Abbie Hoffman and Black Panther, Fred Hampton. When the network saw the final product, they weren’t impressed. In addition to canceling the project, they kept the footage. Luckily, the story doesn’t end there. Turning rejection into action, Videofreex stole back their material and started the country’s very first pirate television station. Their rebel brand of journalism would inspire the concept for public access channels, as well as the DIY approach that’s so popular today. HERE COME THE VIDEOFREEX is a vital piece of America’s media history. –E.F.

CIFF40 Screenings

Thursday, April 07, 2016 at 7:25 PM

Friday, April 08, 2016 at 5:15 PM

Nesnadny + Schwartz Portrait Documentary Competition
Reel Women Direct Award for Excellence in Directing by a Woman

Jon Nealon, Jenny Raskin

Jon Nealon and Jenny Raskin are documentary filmmakers from New York. Nealon's work has appeared on A&E, Oxygen, and Discovery. He has worked in the industry for over a decade. Raskin's work has been featured on TLC and the Sundance Channel.


Jon Nealon, Jenny Raskin

John Foster

Jon Nealon

Film Contact

Community Partner

Society of Professional Journalists, Cleveland Pro Chapter

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