Hulu Docuseries to Spotlight the ‘Rise and Fall’ of Freaknik

Signs promote the revamped Freaknik Festival. (Credit: Instagram/@freaknikfestival)

There’s a new Hulu docuseries in the works on the rise and eventual demise of Freaknik, the legendary street party known as “Black Spring Break.”

The documentary series titled Freaknik: The Wildest Party Never Told will take viewers back to the 1980s and ’90s festival in Atlanta, before it was eventually shut down.

Executive producers on the project include Geraldine L. Porras, P Frank Williams, Jermaine Dupri, and Luther Campbell, according to Variety.

Per Hulu, the series will recount “the rise and fall of a small Atlanta HBCU picnic that exploded into an influential street party and spotlighted ATL as a major cultural stage.”

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Mega-producer Jermaine Dupri first revealed details about the docuseries in December 2022.

“It’s the first day of us shooting the Freaknik documentary. So everybody that missed Freaknik, we’re going to show y’all what you missed,” Dupri said in a video posted on Instagram.

Freaknik dates back to 1982, when students from Spelman and Morris Brown colleges organized a small picnic to celebrate spring break, according to a 1997 report by The Associated Press. The gathering gained national attention when it was mentioned on the sitcom A Different World, and began to attract students from other HBCUs, as well as local residents.

At its height, Freaknik drew hundreds of thousands of people. But the street party caused traffic nightmares, reports of shootings, drug use, sexual assault.

By the mid-90s business leaders and residents had grown weary of the chaos and pressured Atlanta leaders to crack down.

“Few issues in the city of Atlanta have been as divisive in the last 10 years, then-Mayor Bill Campbell told the AP. “It is a very difficult weekend even under the best of circumstances.”

The city stepped up the police presence and officers began to monitor the crowds. The celebration fizzled by 1999 because of the heightened police activity.

There have been numerous attempts to bring Freaknik back, but none have been as popular as the 1990s celebrations.

The Hulu docuseries on Freaknik is expected to be released later this year.

Watch a local news report on Freaknik below.