UC Berkeley Department of Film and Media

Department of Film & Media UC Berkeley

Culture

Bay Area Film Festivals


Spring

  • CAAMFest   

    CAAMFest

    CAAM presents CAAMFest (formerly the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, or SFIAAFF) every March. CAAMFest is the nation’s largest showcase for new Asian American and Asian films, annually presenting approximately 130 works in San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland. Since 1982, the festival has been an important launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers as well as a vital source for new Asian cinema.


  • San Francisco International Film Festival   

    San Francisco International Film Festival

    Anything but expected. The San Francisco International Film Festival is SF's annual celebration of the very best in contemporary international cinema.

    Founded in 1957, the San Francisco International Film Festival is the longest-running film festival in the Americas. Held each spring for two weeks, the International is an extraordinary showcase of cinematic discovery and innovation in the country’s most beautiful city, featuring some 150 films and live events with more than 100 filmmakers in attendance and nearly two dozen awards presented for cinematic excellence. The Festival attracts an annual audience of more than 70,000.


  • San Francisco Silent Film Festival   

    San Francisco Silent Film Festival

    The San Francisco Silent Film Festival is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public about silent film as an art form and as a culturally valuable historical record.

    Throughout the year, SFSFF produces events that showcase important titles from the silent era, often in restored or preserved prints, with live musical accompaniment by some of the world’s finest practitioners of the art of putting music to film. Each presentation exemplifies the extraordinary quality that Academy Award-winning film historian Kevin Brownlow calls “live cinema.”

    Silent-era filmmakers produced masterpieces that can seem breathtakingly modern. In a remarkably short time after the birth of movies, filmmakers developed all the techniques that would make cinema its own art form. The only technique that eluded them was the ability to marry sound to the film print, but these films were never meant to be viewed in silence, and it is often obvious that music was a part of the production as well as the exhibition. The absence of recording on the set, though, meant that the camera was free to move with a grace and elegance that allowed visual storytelling to flourish and made film more than just an adjunct to the stage.

    It is through these films that the world first came to love movies and learned how to appreciate them as art. They have influenced every generation of filmmakers and continue to inspire audiences nearly a century after they were made. 


  • San Jose Cinequest Film Festival   

    San Jose Cinequest Film Festival

     Cinequest Film Festival (CQFF) in San Jose / Silicon Valley: Set in the home of the world’s most influential media technology companies, CQFF showcases premier films, renowned and emerging artists, and breakthrough technology—empowering global connectivity between creators, innovators and audiences. Named best digital festival and a top 10 film festival (out of thousands) by the Ultimate Film Festival Survival Guide, CQFF has led the world in its showcase and implementation of the technologies that have revolutionized film making, exhibition and distribution. CQFF’s blend of the artist and innovator gains focus through its Maverick Awards. A Maverick stands apart from the crowd willing to create and innovate from a place of personal yet global vision.

    Cinequest presents a dynamic 13-day event of 200 international films with over 700+ participating artists and innovators from 50 countries in attendance. Over 10,000 artists have attended CQFF to date.


  • Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival   

    Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival

    The mission of the Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival is to bring strong, independent documentary films and their filmmakers to West Sonoma County.

    The Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival is presented by Sebastopol Center for the Arts, a grassroots, nonprofit arts center created in 1988 by a coalition of art, business and community members to provide art programs and services for all sectors of the community.  


  • SF Greek Film Festival   

    SF Greek Film Festival

    The San Francisco Greek Film Festival is sponsored by the Modern Greek Studies Foundation and all proceeds benefit the educational initiatives of the Center for Modern Greek Studies and the Nikos Kazantzakis Chair at San Francisco State University.  


  • Sonoma Valley Film Festival   

    Sonoma Valley Film Festival

    The Sonoma International Film Festival takes place in the heart of Northern California’s Wine Country and features more than 90 hand-selected films including independent features, documentaries, world cinema, shorts and a showcase of Spanish language films. All films are shown at intimate venues within walking distance on Sonoma’s historic plaza. The Festival is dedicated to promoting independent film, supporting filmmakers around the world and inspiring film lovers.


  • Tiburon International Film Festival   

    Tiburon International Film Festival

     The Tiburon International Film Festival (TIFF) is an annual event, which seeks to provide a greater understanding of the world and its many cultures through the artistic medium of film, and through the top quality films from around the world. TIFF wishes to enhance tolerance between people of all backgrounds. Its goal is one of cultural enrichment and heightened cultural awareness, and to create a platform for the independent filmmakers to express their talent and vision from any nation. TIFF strongly believes in its motto: "Understanding the World through Film"®



Summer

  • Frameline LGBT Film Festival   

    Frameline LGBT Film Festival

    As the world's longest-running and largest LGBT Film Festival, Frameline38 shares transformative stories through groundbreaking documentaries, entertaining features, touching short films, and cinematic classics. Frameline's mission is to change the world through the power of queer cinema. As a media arts non-profit, Frameline's programs connect filmmakers and audiences in San Francisco and around the world. 


  • Jewish Film Festival   

    Jewish Film Festival

    SFJFF is a year-round media arts organization that promotes awareness, appreciation and pride in the diversity of the Jewish people. Our programs are meant to create community and strengthen consciousness of Jewish identity, history and culture; provide a dynamic and inclusive forum for exploration of and dialogue about Jewish experiences around the world, and encourage independent filmmakers working with Jewish themes.  


  • LaborFest Film Festival   

    LaborFest Film Festival

    LaborFest was established in 1994 to institutionalize the history and culture of working people in an annual labor cultural, film and arts festival. The need to build local, national and international solidarity is critical, if labor is going to face the challenges it faces on all fronts. LaborFests help bring our struggles together in art, film and music. 


  • MadCat Women’s Film Festival   

    MadCat Women’s Film Festival

    The MadCat Women’s International Film Festival seeks to exhibit provocative and visionary works that are original in their use of the medium. The festival’s goal is to emphasize innovative works by women that challenge the use of sound and image and explore notions of visual storytelling. This international festival advances an alternative vision by emphasizing work that exploits the medium. 


  • Queer Women of Color Film Festival   

    Queer Women of Color Film Festival

    Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project (QWOCMAP) promotes the creation, exhibition and distribution of new films/videos that address the vital social justice issues that concern queer women of color and our communities, authentically reflect our life stories, and build community through art and activism. 


  • San Francisco Silent Film Festival   

    San Francisco Silent Film Festival

    The San Francisco Silent Film Festival is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public about silent film as an art form and as a culturally valuable historical record. Throughout the year, SFSFF produces events that showcase important titles from the silent era, often in restored or preserved prints, with live musical accompaniment by some of the world’s finest practitioners of the art of putting music to film. Each presentation exemplifies the extraordinary quality that Academy Award-winning film historian Kevin Brownlow calls “live cinema.” 


  • SF Black Film Festival   

    SF Black Film Festival

     San Francisco's Black Film Festival’s mission is to celebrate African American cinema and the African cultural Diaspora and to showcase a diverse collection of films – from emerging and established filmmakers. This is accomplished by presenting Black films, which reinforce positive images and dispel negative stereotypes, and providing film artists from the bay area in particular and around the world in general, a forum for their work to be viewed and discussed. SFBFF believes film can lead to a better understanding of and communication between, peoples of diverse cultures, races, and lifestyles, while simultaneously serving as a vehicle to initiate dialogue on the important issues of our times.



Fall

  • Arab Film Festival   

    Arab Film Festival

    The Arab Film Festival is the largest independent annual showcase of Arab films and filmmakers in the country. The festival has an international standing and is considered one of the most important Arab film festivals outside the Arab world. It strives to present the best contemporary films that provide insight into the beauty, complexity and diversity of the Arab world alongside realistic perspectives on Arab people, culture, art, history and politics. 


  • Berkeley Film and Video Festival   

    Berkeley Film and Video Festival

    Founded by award winning independent filmmakers who were involved with the "independent underground cinema revolution" in the early and mid-1960's, BERKELEY VIDEO + FILM FESTIVAL was created in 1990 to provide a venue for independent film and videomakers.


  • Berlin and Beyond Film Festival   

    Berlin and Beyond Film Festival

    The Berlin & Beyond Film Festival has been the leading festival of contemporary German cinema in the Americas. With an annual attendance of over 10,000 film-goers, the festival has presented over 500 motion pictures from German-speaking countries in its history. It has welcomed to the San Francisco screen and stage many celebrated international film talents, including Mario Adorf, Fatih Akin, Moritz Bleibtreu, Daniel Brühl, Hannelore Elsner, Florian David Fitz, Bruno Ganz, Barbara Sukowa and Wim Wenders. 


  • Mill Valley Film Festival   

    Mill Valley Film Festival

    Since founding the Mill Valley Film Festival in 1977, Mark Fishkin has shepherded this once small, three-day showcase into an eleven-day, internationally acclaimed cinema event presenting a wide variety of new films from around the world in an engaged, community setting.

    The festival has an impressive track record of launching new films and new filmmakers, and has earned a reputation as a filmmakers' festival by celebrating the best in American independent and foreign films, along side high-profile and prestigious award contenders. The relaxed and non-competitive atmosphere surrounding MVFF, gives filmmakers and audiences alike the opportunity to share their work and experiences in a collaborative and convivial setting. 


  • SF Documentary Film Festival   

    SF Documentary Film Festival

    SF DocFest is an annual festival devoted to documentary cinema. Since 2001, this two week-long event has brought the most weird and wonderful aspects of real life to the big screen. 


  • SF Irish Film Festival   

    SF Irish Film Festival

    The San Francisco Irish Film Festival (SFIFF) was founded in 2003, and just celebrated the 10th anniversary festival at Delancey Street Theater. The festival presents the very best in contemporary Irish cinema, celebrating everything from features to documentaries to Irish language films (with English subtitles for those who didn’t spend a summer at a Gaeltacht). The Irish are notorious for story telling, and the Irish Short film has rapidly become an art form in Ireland. 


  • SF Shorts Film Festival   

    SF Shorts Film Festival

    SF Shorts screens a very wide range of films, mixing genres, subjects, styles, and cultures.
    It's about grabbing someone by the eyeballs and making them think, feel, and react.
    It's about what people see every day but now stare at in wonder. 


  • United Nations Film Festival   

    United Nations Film Festival

    As one of the oldest solely documentary film festivals in the US, UNAFF has grown and earned the respect of audiences and filmmakers alike for its fearless independence and integrity. In addition to providing early outlets for films, many of which later went on to win major awards and accolades, UNAFF prides itself in creating a community forum with year-round programs for discovery and dialogue about different cultures, issues and solutions. 



Winter

  • Italian Film Festival   

    Italian Film Festival

    Originally started as an informal, one-time only presentation of Italian movies in a college lecture hall, the Italian Film Festival of Marin County has grown over its 37 years into a perennial favorite in the San Francisco Bay Area. From the beginning it has been a labor of love for its longtime director, Lido Cantarutti. Under his direction the program has included appearances from Italian film directors and composers, dignitaries of the Italian and Italian-American communities, and an authentically Italian atmosphere at every presentation. The centerpiece, however, is always top-quality Italian cinema. 


  • San Francisco American Indian Film Festival   

    San Francisco American Indian Film Festival

     AIFI’s three-pronged project, the Film Festival and its constituent parts – the full schedule of film screenings, the opening night and Awards Show, the convening of Tribal Touring Program youth participants and screening of their films encourage interaction among filmmakers and audiences – all work together to raise cultural awareness. The Festival presents a rare opportunity for audiences of all backgrounds to watch and discuss films that offer authentic portraits of Native life.