7th annual Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival Returns March 27-30

The Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival (SDFF) has just released details for the upcoming 7th annual 4-day documentary showcase.
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Feb. 3, 2014 - PRLog -- The Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival (SDFF) has just released details for  the upcoming 7th annual 4-day documentary showcase. This much anticipated festival is held throughout Sebastopol California March 27-30. “We will feature more films on more screens with more filmmakers in town than ever before,” said Festival and Program Director Jason Perdue when asked what’s new for this year. This year the festival will feature 71 films on six screens over four days and over 100 filmmakers and guests are expected in Sebastopol, 2014 is the largest and most ambitious SDFF ever.

“We’re especially excited about several programs we have been developing for the festival over the past 12 months. With generous support from the Community Foundation--Sonoma County’s Small Grants for the Arts program, we have curated our Hybrid Documentary Days / Cult Doc Nights Program featuring 11 different films that will challenge all of your assumptions about what documentary films can be,” Perdue continued, “with the Cult Doc Nights films playing in a brand new, late night time slot at the festival this year.”

From Friday night through Sunday the Hybrid Documentary Program features films that straddle the line between fiction and non-fiction filmmaking with discussions planned after each program on media literacy and how artists use hybrid methods to represent truth while telling stories. The program includes films that have animation, found footage, fake archival material, and subjects that may or may not be acting. The Cult Docs on Friday and Saturday nights are unique hybrid documentaries from legendary filmmakers Orson Welles (F for Fake) and Guy Maddin (My Winnipeg) that use humor, audience deception, and experimental ways of representing history to further stretch how to define documentary film.

“Cinematographer Bob Elfstrom will be joining us for a unique presentation on cinematography and lighting for anyone interested in how films are made and how lighting is subtly used to create mood and focus in movies,” said Perdue. The Cinematography & Lighting program is the latest in SDFF’s continuing series of discussions with filmmakers on the mechanics of filmmaking that have included composing, editing, archival usage, and audio recording at past festivals. “These presentations have been an important part of bringing the art and work of documentary filmmaking to life.”

As a program of the Sebastopol Center for the Arts, SDFF has enjoyed the greater visibility of the center’s new location and a wonderful state-of-the-art theater that can seat up to 300 people during the film festival.

         “Now that the remodel is completed, we’re ready for this year’s crowds and looking forward to hosting so many great films over the festival weekend,” said SCA Executive Director Linda Galletta.

         Of the 71 films playing in the festival, five feature length and five short films have been chosen to compete for the Jury and Critics Awards presented on Opening Night, March 27.

“These films fulfill our mission of bringing the best documentary films in the world to Sonoma County and represent a year’s worth of film watching by our programmers,” Perdue remarked. “We thrilled be announcing our award finalists today and getting everyone excited about this year’s festival.”

Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival is March 27-30 with screenings at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts, Rialto Cinemas, and Main Stage West. March 27th’s Opening Night Film, Awards, and Gala is $25. Individual films and special programs throughout the weekend are $10 each. The much coveted All-Access Passes are on sale now for $250 . The full schedule and trailers of the films will be available at www.sebastopolfilmfestival.org on Feb 15. Tickets go on sale to general public on February 17. Advance purchase is recommended. 707-829-4797.

Jury & Critics Award Finalists –


Bending Steel USA (Director Dave Carroll) – One man’s quest to find his place in the world through the pursuit of becoming an old-time strongman.

Beyond All Boundaries USA/India (Director Sushrut Jain) – India’s passion for the game of cricket told through three amazing interweaved stories.

Finding Hillywood Rwanda/USA (Director Leah Warshawski) – Rwanda’s first film festival shows the power of cinema to heal a nation.

Levitated Mass USA (Director Doug Pray) – A 340-ton granite boulder crawls through Southern California neighborhoods in the name of art.

These Birds Walk Pakistan/USA (Directors Omar Mullick, Bassam Tariq) – Children show their resilience amidst chaos of country and family while looking for home.


Bhiwani Junction USA (Director Abhi Singh) – A 12-year old boy dreams of winning an Olympic boxing medal.

I Am Sarah Maple USA (Directors Ariel Fisher, Tyler Gurd) – Artist Sarah Maple’s art comments on feminism, her Muslim faith, and subverts societal norms.

Irish Folk Furniture Ireland (Director Tony Donoghue) – Stop motion animation brings old furniture to life.

Vultures of Tibet Canada/USA (Director Russell O. Bush) – Sacred burial ritual in Tibet has become a Chinese tourist attraction.

What I Hate About Myself China (Directors Ben Mullinkosson, Bobby Moser) – Girls compete on Chinese reality show for cosmetic surgery.

Tom Montan
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Tags:Documentary Film, Film Festival, Sebastopol CA, Film, Sonoma County
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