Getting excited for SFIFF? We're counting down the days 'til we announce our full lineup. It's hard to believe that we are in our 58th year. Each time around, the Festival feels fresh & new. Can't wait to share the full roster of incredible films & programs coming to the San Francisco in just a few months–SFIFF58 runs from April 23 through May 7.
In the meantime, don't fret! There are a slew of SFFS-supported films playing in the Bay Area over the next few weeks. We'll be hanging out at Indie Fest & Sketchfest, plus Citizenfour (playing at Landmark Theatres' Opera Plaza Cinema) & Selma (playing at a variety of venues, including the Sundance Kabuki Cinema)–two films that we hosted special screenings of this past fall–are getting their theatrical due. With 69 days to go, you have plenty of time to see all of the new releases from the Film Society family before cozying up with your SFIFF58 program guide. Make your own Fest: string together a program of all of our films!
3 Still Standing – Jan. 29 at SF Sketchfest; fiscally sponsored by SFFS
The funny and enchanting story of stand-up comedians Will Durst, Larry “Bubbles” Brown and Johnny Steele. They were all rising young stars in San Francisco in the 80s. They dreamed of being rich and famous - but life had other ideas. What they got was even more rewarding. Also featuring Dana Carvey, Debi Durst, Paula Poundstone, Rob Schneider, Bobby Slayton and Robin Williams. Join Will Durst, Johnny Steele and Larry "Bubbles" Brown for the San Francisco Premiere followed by live performances.
Salute to Preston Sturges: The Miracle of Morgan's Creek with guests Christopher Guest, Michael McKean & Harry Shearer – Jan. 30 at SF Sketchfest; conversation moderated by SFFS Executive Director Noah Cowan
Preston Sturges (1898-1959) was an American playwright, screenwriter and filmmaker who was considered by many to be the father of the screwball comedy. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for The Great McGinty and went on to write and direct comedy classics including Sullivan's Travels, The Lady Eve, The Palm Beach Story, Hail the Conquering Hero, Unfaithfully Yours, and the film that will be screened at this salute, The Miracle of Morgan's Creek. One of the highlights of Sturges's work is his use of an unofficial ensemble 'stock company' of the greatest comedic character actors and actresses of the era. There is a parallel in the work of special guests Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer, who are key members of a modern 'company' of performers who have created amazing ensemble comedies including This Is Spinal Tap, Best In Show and A Mighty Wind. They'll present the film live in-person, moderated by Noah Cowan, Executive Director of the San Francisco Film Society.
FREE – Feb. 7, 8 & 14 at SF Indie Fest; formerly fiscally sponsored by SFFS
Academy Award-nominated filmmaker David Collier and co-director Suzanne LaFetra have crafted a stirring, up-close documentary that follows a group of Oakland teens who find personal liberation and mutual support through dance. These dynamic young people face the very real challenges of poverty, alienation, HIV, sexual abuse, and gang violence but are dedicated to telling the truth–even if it hurts. Because the truth will, to some degree, set them free. FREE captures their struggles as they turn the courage, determination, and stamina required in their daily lives into a contagious joy. –Chris Metzler
The Cult of JT LeRoy – Feb. 7, 8 & 15 at SF Indie Fest; fiscally sponsored by SFFS
JT LeRoy was a teen prostitute, addicted to heroin and infected with HIV, when a therapist encouraged him to write his life story. Buoyed by a cadre of celebrities, he published three critically acclaimed books, including Sarah and The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things. But as his fame skyrocketed, the shocking truth emerged: JT was not what he seemed. What followed was a downfall as bewildering as it was tragic. Drawn into LeRoy’s inner circle before the truth came to light, filmmaker Marjorie Sturm was misled like many others. Through intimate interviews with many close to the tarnished figure, Sturm attempts to untangle what really happened, and in the process explores how his deception called into question not only the value of LeRoy’s writing absent authenticity, but our culture’s complicity with the author’s seductive cult of personality. –Chris Metzler
Love Land – Feb. 14 & 19 at SF Indie Fest; Fall 2013 SFFS / KRF Filmmaking Grant Recipient
Set against the backdrop of the Disability Rights Movement, Love Land features a unique group of characters, both with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their performances are never oversimplified but are thrust into a complicated mixture of honesty and betrayal via drugs and alcohol. Love Land tells the story of Ivy, a 24-year-old woman caught between two worlds. She has an intellectual disability but hides her label with grace, wearing other bracelets over her medical information bracelet. What she doesn't hide well is the crush she has on Oscar, a 16-year-old apprentice tattoo artist who works (illegally) at the same tattoo parlor as Ivy. When Ivy's desire to impress Oscar leads to events that convince her sister (and legal guardian) to place her in a public institution for people with developmental disabilities, Ivy faces an identity crisis, choosing just how far she will go and who she will hurt in order to reunite with her dream man. –Sandy Hoffman
The San Francisco Film Society is dedicated to supporting emerging and established filmmakers. Our Project Development & Fiscal Sponsorship program, overseen by our Filmmaker360 team, is designed to help you step-by-step through the process of getting your film funded, made and seen.
Filmmaker360 also runs one of the largest film grant programs in the country, which disburses nearly $1 million annually to incubate and support innovative and exceptional films at every stage of production.