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Experience the 34th Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival


Santa Barbara Film Festival 2019 PosterThis is the time of year when major celebrities and their entourages descend on Santa Barbara for the annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), taking place through February 9, 2019. Now in its 34th year, the celebration is offering 63 world premieres and 59 U.S. premieres from 48 countries.  The festival also hosts heartwarming tributes with the year’s top talent, as well as panel discussions and free community education and outreach programs.


Special Awards

The Outstanding Performer of the Year Award this year goes to critically-acclaimed actor Rami Malek for his Academy Award-winning work in Bohemian Rhapsody. Glenn Close will receive the Maltin Modern Master Award for her role in The Wife. Michael B. Jordan will once again attend SBIFF to receive honors for his work in Black Panther and Creed II. Viggo Mortensen will receive the American Riviera Award for his work in Green Book. Virtuosos Award winners this year include: Yalitza Aparicio (Roma), Sam Elliott (A Star is Born), Elsie Fisher (Eighth Grade), Claire Foy (First Man), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), Thomasin McKenzie (Leave No Trace), John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman), and Steven Yeun (Burning).

Melissa McCarthy at "The Boss" World Premiere, Village Theater, Westwood, CA 03-28-16One of the events I’m excited about this year is the Montecito Award, honoring Melissa McCarthy. This special award is given to a person in the entertainment industry who has made a great contribution to film. Who better than funny Melissa McCarthy to win this award for her performance in Can You Ever Forgive Me? The public is invited to watch the presentation to the celebrated actress on Sunday, February 3, 2019, at 8:00 PM at the Arlington Theater, the official hub of SBIFF.

 Melissa McCarthy – always a compelling talent – triumphs as Lee Israel in CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME,” says SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling. “She’s funny, dark, caustic and oh so vulnerable. SBIFF is so pleased to be able to award this performance and her career so far.”

Women Gaining Foothold in the Film Industry

Another interesting event that caught my eye is the discussion about Women Gaining Foothold in the Film Industry.

“We’re definitely seeing a gradual change in the number of female filmmaker submissions,” said SBIFF Program Director Michael Albright. “This year, there’s about equal representation in our European selections, and more women than men in our Social Justice category.”

This year, the directors of SBIFF say they saw a narrowing of gender disparity in the selection process itself. This year’s screening committee was made up of nearly equal parts female and male. Those individuals took on the daunting task of shaving about 3,000 film entries down to the almost 200 official festival selections the public is invited to see.

Screen Cuisine Menu

This is the eighth year in a row that SBIFF chose to showcase films about food and drink. There are 12 movies to see in this category. They include documentary, narrative and short films. If you want to examine the challenges faced by real-life female chef-owners, then be sure to look for the Screen Cuisine sidebar. There’s also a film about a hot-headed fictional chef who dissolves in a blaze of vainglory and a mysterious saga that has to do with the death of an Italian prosecco producer.

The festival will conclude on February 9 at the Arlington Theater with the world premiere of Spoons: A Santa Barbara Story directed by Wyatt Daily. Spoons is an exploration of how one of the most significant corners of the world produced and continues to produce, some of the most talented surfers and innovators. Deeper than all is a story of craftsmanship, work ethic, renegades and tradition. This is a film that goes beyond the time spent in the ocean, to define how one spends a lifetime.

Tickets for the Santa Barbara International Film Festival can be purchased here.

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts and educational organization. Over the past 32 years, SBIFF has become one of the leading film events in the United States. The festival attracts 90,000 attendees and offers 11 days of 200+ films, tributes, and panels; fulfilling its mission to engage, enrich, and inspire people through the power of film.

Santa Barbara offers loads of attractions and outdoor opportunities. There’s an event, festival or activity to suit all ages. Check out my blog, Santa Barbara Events, and Festivals: A Cornucopia of Fun, for details on some of Santa Barbara’s most popular community events throughout the entire year.

My clients appreciate the fact that I’m considered to be an expert in my community.  I’ve been a Montecito resident for nearly 30 years. I keep abreast of what’s happening in the market, including fun events like SBIFF. I pride myself on simply and effectively communicating with my clientele about the market and how it directly impacts real estate in the area. For more about me and my background, check out my bio.

Want to live close to the action? Considering a move to Montecito, Santa Barbara or Hope Ranch? If so, check out my website, then give me a call at +1 (805) 886-9378 or email me at Or just meet me at the 34th Annual Santa Barbara Film Festival and we’ll discuss your needs in person. Off to the movies!


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