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The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) presents its line-up

Celebrating its Silver Anniversary, The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) presents its stellar line-up for 2010. 
The 25th edition features 196 films including 18 World Premieres, 28 U.S. Premieres and a vast selection of films representing 45 countries.  SBIFF is proud to welcome immensely talented filmmakers and honorees as we look back at 25 years of cinematic history and has assembled exceptional and evocative movies to entertain the expansive SBIFF audience.  The Festival, whose motto this year is '11 Amazing Days, 10 Starry Nights,' begins Thursday, February 4 and continues through Sunday, February 14, 2010.

"Our 25th Anniversary is a joyous landmark," comments SBIFF Director Roger Durling, "and that spirit is reflected in our program and in all the details that have gone into putting it
together.  Here's to 25 more years."


SBIFF 2010 will kick off at the historic Arlington Theatre with the World Premiere of "Flying Lessons" directed by Derek Magyar in his directorial debut and starring Christine Lahti, Maggie Grace, Jonathan Tucker, Cary Elwes, Joanna Cassidy and Hal HolbrookFlying Lessons is the intimate story of a 25-year-old woman (Grace) forced to abandon her self-destructive and empty life in L.A. to return to her home town and estranged mother (Lahti).  There she is forced to face the relationships she left behind and the memories that go with them - and the while befriending an elderly man (Holbrook) who teaches her the value of the present which allows her to come to terms with her past.  Following the Opening Night screening the festivities will continue with a partyat Paseo Nuevo in downtown Santa Barbara.  Opening night Film and Gala is sponsored by UGG Australia, Studio 7 and Coca-Cola.


Closing Night will feature the World Premiere of "Middle Men," directed by George Gallo and starring Giovanni Ribisi, Luke Wilson, James Caan, Kelsey Grammar and Kevin Pollack.  The film chronicles Jack Harris, one of the pioneers of internet commerce, as he wrestles with his morals and struggles not to drown in a sea of conmen, mobsters, drug addicts, and pornstars.  Director and cast will be in attendance. Closing Night festivities take place at the historic Arlington Theatre and are sponsored by SB Independent and EOS Lounge.


SBIFF has selected Emily Blunt to also receive the Chopin Virtuoso Award on Sunday, February 7, joining fellowrecipients Carey Mulligan, Saoirse Ronan, Gabourey Sidibe and Michael Stuhlbarg.  Since her breakout role as the sarcastic assistant 'Emily' in The Devil Wears Prada, Blunt has appeared in such films as The Jane Austen Club, Charlie Wilson's War and Sunshine Cleaning.  But it is her role in the historical bio-pic The Young Victoria that has lifted Blunt's career to new heights, delivering a radiant performance as the feisty, good-hearted Queen Victoria and for the surprising recreations of life and ritual at the English court. 


PLEASE NOTE:  Due to unforeseen scheduling conflicts for two of our honorees, Stanley Tucci and Gabourey Sidibe, SBIFF will present a special screening of The Lovely Bones on Saturday, February 6 at 1:30 pm, following by a conversation and presentation of the Cinema Vanguard Award.  In addition, Gabourey Sidibe will receive her Chopin Virtuoso Award on Friday, February 12, during the Cinema Vanguard Award Tribute.


SBIFF will present the David Attenborough Award for Excellence in Nature Filmmakingto the filmmakers for "The Cove."  Using state-of-the-art equipment, a group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O'Barry, infiltrate a cove near Taijii, Japan to expose both a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health.  Following a screening of the film, acclaimed nature filmmaker Mike DeGruy will moderate a conversation with the film's director Louie Psihoyos and Ric O'Barry and present the award.  The evening will take place at the Lobero Theatre on Wednesday, February 10.


Santa Barbara celebrates one of their own with Jeff Bridges Day.   Sunday, February 14, will start early with screenings of Bridges' Oscar-nominated films:  The Last Picture Show, Thunderbolt and Lightfoot, Starman and The Contender.  Bridges will then appear for a Conversation, followed by a screening of his critically-acclaimed Crazy Heart.


Each year, SBIFF will highlight a special sidebar:  Focus on Quebec.  Quebec is a province in east-central Canada. It is the only Canadian province with a predominantly French-speaking identity and is Canada's largest province by area. This film section will give you a unique look into their rich culture.  And we will be fortunate to have a mini 'invasion' of its filmmakers visiting us throughout the Festival.


SBIFF has become an important showcase for Academy-Award® frontrunners, many of whom have gone on to win the Oscar.   The 25th Santa Barbara International Film Festival proudly celebrates some of the year's finest work in film.  The complete list of 2010 Honorees (in date order) is as follows: 

Sandra Bullock will receive The American Riviera Award, Presented by Chopin, moderated by long-time friend of the fest, Pete Hammond on Friday, February 5 at the Arlington Theatre.

James Cameron will receive the esteemed Lucky BrandTM Modern Master Award, moderated by film historian Leonard Maltin on Saturday, February 6 at the Arlington Theatre.

Chopin Virtuosos 2010 Awardswill be presented to Carey Mulligan (An Education), Gabourey Sidibe (Precious), Saoirse Ronan (The Lovely Bones), Michael Stuhlbarg (A Serious Man), and Emily Blunt (Young Victoria),in recognition of the year's emerging film artists.  The evening will be moderated by Entertainment Weekly Sr. Editor, Sean Smith on Sunday, February 7 at the Lobero Theatre.

Outstanding Director of the Year Kathryn Bigelow.  Following a retrospective of her films throughout the day, a Conversation will take place Monday, February 8, at the Lobero Theatre. 

David Attenborough Award for Excellence in Nature Filmmaking will be awarded to "The Cove" moderated by Mike DeGruy on Wednesday, February 10 at the Lobero Theatre.

Julianne Moore will receive the Montecito Award, moderated by Pete Hammond on Thursday, February 11 at the Arlington Theatre.  Sponsored by Santa Barbara Wine Company.

Cinema Vanguard Awards will be presented to Vera Farmiga (Up In The Air), Peter Sarsgaard (An Education), Stanley Tucci (The Lovely Bones) and Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds) in recognition of artists who have forged their own path by taking artistic risks.  The evening will be moderated by SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durlingon Friday, February 12 at the Lobero Theatre. 

Colin Firth will receive the Outstanding Performer of the Year Award, sponsored by Stella Artois and Classic Party Rentals and moderated by Roger Durling, on Saturday, February 13 at the Arlington Theatre.

Continuing the annual tradition of highlighting a Guest Director, SBIFF has selected Kathryn Bigelowas the Outstanding Director of the Year.  A director not afraid to push the envelope in the cinematic world, Kathryn Bigelow has the eye for the picture she wants to present and then does so, with an expertise that is both gracious and bold.  On Monday, February 8, the Festival will begin the day with a retrospective of Bigelow's films:  Near Dark, Point Break and Strange Days, after which will be a Conversation, followed by a special screening of "The Hurt Locker."



The SBIFF has become renowned for creating smart, insightful and informative panels that feature a veritable who's who in the world of filmmaking, including many Oscar contenders. 

The series kicks off at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, February 6, is the ever-popular "It Starts With the Script," screenwriters panel moderated by IndieWire's Anne Thompson.   The panel takes place at the Lobero Theatre and is sponsored by Pacifica Graduate Institute.


Sunday, February 7, at 11:00 a.m., also at the Lobero Theatre, "Directors on Directing" moderated by Peter Bart, Editorial Director of Variety.  The panel takes place at the Lobero Theater and is sponsored by Variety.


The insights continue during the Fest's second weekend starting off with the "Movers & Shakers" panel on Saturday, February 13 at 11 a.m., bringing together top producers to discuss their craft, moderated by Los Angeles Times columnist Patrick Goldstein


And at 2:00 pm, the next panel is composed of some of the most creative women working in film today entitled "Creative Forces: Women in the Biz," moderated by Madelyn Hammond, President, Madelyn Hammond & Assoc., and Former Chief Marketing Officer for Variety.  The panel takes place at the Lobero Theatre and is sponsored by Nestle Cranberry Raisinets and Sandy Stahl Sotheby's International Realty.

Panelists will be announced soon.


The SBIFF takes its commitment to the young people of our community to heart and with enthusiasm.  Artful cinema can educate as well as entertain.  Following are just a few of the programs the Festival will offer:

10-10-10 Student Screenwriting Competition and Filmmaking Competition - The Screenwriting Competition, sponsored by Business First Bank and Final Draft, is comprised of 10 students who were selected out of 28 submissions fromSanta Barbara area high school and college students who submitted a 10-page sample of their best fiction writing - screenplay, stage play, or short story - to their school's representative.  The five best script samples were chosen from the high school level and five from the college level.   The finalists are then assigned a storyline and an industry professional to mentor them during the writing of their screenplay.  Finalists will meet with their mentor throughout the process, submitting their final draft in January 2010.   On Tuesday, February 2, at 2pm at the Canary Hotel will be the 10-10-10 Press Conference where Screenplays will be assigned to selected filmmakers.

The 10 student screenplays are matched with a category-appropriate Filmmaking finalist from the 10-10-10 Student Filmmaking Competition, which consists of 10 students selected from 57 submissions.  They will then produce a 10-minute film during the 10 days of the 25th Santa Barbara International Film Festival.  On Sunday, February 14 at 1 pm at the Lobero Theatre, all ten completed films will be screened and the winners will be announced.  The winning films will then be screened prior to the Closing Night film.

APPLEBOX - A FREE Family Festival for Children - The SBIFF will produce AppleBox, a family film section for children during the mornings of the two weekends that bookend the festival - Saturday, February 6 and Sunday, February 7 and on Saturday, February 13 and Sunday, February 14.  Children's films include shorts programs and is headlined by the US Premiere feature Carlitos and the Chance of a Lifetime (Carlitos y el campo de los sueños), about a young orphan who dreams of being a professional soccer player.  Screenings will enable children to see wonderful movies that are not easily accessible, in a festive, entertaining and supportive environment-which shows that SBIFF is not only about the glitz and the glam, but it's also about the fam!  Apple Box is sponsored by Nordstrom, Cold Stone Creamery, with Special Support provided by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.


Field Trip to the Movies- SBIFF provides a fascinating and thought-provoking film, study guides, and transportation to "Field Trip to the Movies" as part of our Reel Nature series for 3,000 5th and 6th graders in Santa Barbara County.  This educational program, which is scheduled for Monday, February 8, at 9am and 11am, includes an opportunity for students to explore intriguing facts and new research about the natural world as they view a film, engage in discussion, and participate in an interactive film-creating experience with industry professionals and is hosted by acclaimed nature filmmaker Mike DeGruy.  This yearSBIFF has the pleasure of presenting James Cameron's Aliens of the Deep.  The students will take a once-in-a-lifetime journey with Academy Award®-winning director James Cameron and make contact with another world. This incredible underwater adventure gives extraordinary glimpses of unbelievable creatures that live in an alien world in the deepest depths of the sea.  The purpose of "Field Trip to the Movies" is to inspire and excite children's curiosity with nature and the world around them, while at the same time introducing them to the possibilities of them being a filmmaker and naturalist.  Field Trip to the Movies is sponsored by Wells Fargo Bank and Cox Communications with Special Support provided by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.  


In partnership with The Santa Barbara County Film Commission, Film historian Dana Driskell of UCSB, and in celebration of the one hundred year anniversary of filmmaking in Santa Barbara County, SBIFF will include three short films during its festival lineup which were produced in Santa Barbara one hundred years ago, in the early months of 1910.  The short films will run during the festival's Santa Barbara Filmmakers showcase, throughout the week.  These three films, recently obtained from the Library of Congress, have not been available for viewing for almost a century.  Produced by the Chicago based Essanay film company, the movies include a short subject documentary entitled "The  Ostrich and the Lady," with a three minute run time, "The Fence on Bar Z Ranch", with a twenty one minute run time, and "The Ranch Girl's Legacy" with an eighteen minute run time.  These three films, produced one hundred years ago, are representative of the culture and sensibility of the period and provide a fascinating look back at our rich film heritage.

3RD Weekend --The SBIFF will continue their tradition of presenting the "3RD Weekend," which will feature the highlights of the 25th Festival for Santa Barbara residents.  The winning films will be screened throughout the weekend of February 18-21 at the Riviera Theatre.  Screenings are free and tickets are available on a first come, first serve basis at the Riviera Theatre.  Screening times will be posted on the SBIFF website at in the days following Closing Night.



The SBIFF continues its commitment to exciting, culturally enlightening, and entertaining programming and sidebars.  In addition to presenting Independent Features, International Features, Documentary Features, Short Films and Special Presentation films, programmed by Candace Schermerhorn, the SBIFF will also offer films from the following sidebars:


EASTERN BLOC featuring films from Eastern Europe;

FOCUS ON QUEBEC, giving a unique look into the rich culture of this east-central Canadian Province. 

REEL NATURE, the nature films series programmed by renowned nature cinematographer and Santa Barbara resident Mike DeGruy.  

EAST X WEST, a collection of the best cinema from Asia,  programmed by Emmy-nominated actor and director Tim Matheson

TO THE MAXXX is a Santa Barbara specialty,programmed by Santa Barbara filmmaker Russ Spencer and features extreme sports films and documentaries including the World Premiere of 180 South, directed by Chris Malloy, about one of the most unique and prolific environmentalists of our time, Yvon Chouinard, that weaves his tale through a modern day expedition.

LATINO CINEMEDIA, sponsored by Tinta Latina Magazine and Univision, offers a collection of films from Spain and Latin America, continuing SBIFF's commitment to Spanish and Latin American films, programmed by UCSB professor Cristina Venegas

SANTA BARBARA FILMMAKERS, sponsored by CASA Magazine and Samy's Camera, programmed by Russ Spencer and which includes 7 World Premiere feature films.


The Santa Barbara International Film Festival is proud to have been selected by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences to be an official Academy Award-qualifying festival, giving the winners of the Bruce Corwin Awards for Best Live Action Short Under 30 Minutes and Best Animation Short Film eligibility to be nominated for the prestigious Oscars.


SBIFF is proud to welcome the esteemed 2010 Jury:  actor/director Joel David Moore (Avatar and director, SBIFF Award winning film, Spiral); SBIFF originator Phyllis DePicciotto; actor Haaz Sleiman (The Visitor); USA Today Film Critic Claudia Puig; Andy Abrahams Wilson (director, Under Our Skin); actor Anthony Zerbe(The Matrix); actor Dennis Franz (NYPD Blue); actor/director Robert Carradine; actor Jay Thomas; actor/director/writer Perry Lang.


Select films will vie for the following awards:


The Panavision Spirit Award for Independent Cinema - for the Best Independent film

Juried by industry professionals

Award: camera package worth $60,000


The Best Foreign Film Award - for the best Foreign Feature

Juried by industry professionals


Nueva Vision Award - for the best Spanish-language feature

                             Juried by industry professionals


Best Eastern Bloc Cinema Award - for best Eastern Bloc feature

                             Juried by industry professionals


The East Meets West Award - for best Asian feature

                             Juried by industry professionals


Best Documentary Film Award - for the best documentary film

                             Juried by industry professionals

The Fund for Santa Barbara Social Justice Award Sponsored by The Fund for Santa Barbara - for documentary film that addresses social justice issues                               

                             Juried by a committee selected by The Fund for Santa Barbara

Award: $2,500 cash


Bruce Corwin Award for Best Live Action Short Film Under 30 Minutes

Juried by industry professionals


Bruce Corwin Award for Best Animation Short Film

                             Juried by industry professionals


10-10-10 Student Filmmaking Competition - - for Best of the 10-10-10 Student Filmmaking Competitor

Juried by industry professionals.

Award for Best 10-10-10 Short Film (1 college award, 1 high school award):

$500  gift certificates for Samy's Cameras to each of the 4 winners

Participation consideration: All participants receive a copy of Final Draft Software.

The winning films will be screened at the Closing Night Event.

10-10-10 Student Screenwriting Competition, Sponsored by Business First Bank, Final Draft for best screenplay. 

                             Juried by industry professionals

 Award for Best 10-10-10 Screenplay (1 college award, 1 high school award):

Participation consideration:  All participants will receive a copy of Final Draft software.


Audience Choice Award, sponsored by The Santa Barbara Independent


The 25th Santa Barbara International Film Festival is set to run February 4 - 14, 2010.  Now in its 25th year, SBIFF is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching local culture and raising consciousness of film as an art form and continues to be an essential stop on the road to the Oscars.  SBIFF presents quality American and World independent films, Documentary cinema, Spanish and Latin American, European and Asian sidebars as well as nature and surf films, all within the beautiful setting of downtown Santa Barbara, a perfect backdrop and premier tourist destination.  The SBIFF is also committed to education through its 10-10-10 Student Filmmaking and Screenwriting Competitions, Field Trip to the Movies, and educational seminars.  With a projected audience of over 70,000 viewing more than 200 films over its eleven-day run, the SBIFF attracts an eclectic and diverse consumer base, both locally and nationally, while maintaining strong ties with the entertainment industry in nearby Los Angeles.  For more information, please visit


Tickets are still available for all events.  Due to the popularity, the 8:00 am screenings are returning. We still have Platinum Passes, which provide admission and priority seating to all Festival screenings and sponsored events. The State Street Pass, perfect for locals, allows admission to all "non peak-hour" screenings which excludes the 4:00 through 8:00 pm screenings; The Tribute Package provides entry to all the Tributes, Opening Night Film and Gala, Closing Night film and one 10-film MiniPak; and The Film Geek Package offers tickets to Opening and Closing Nights, a 10-film MiniPak and access to all Panel events.  In addition the Cinema Pass gives you admission to all films including Opening and Closing night and the Introductory Package provides access to Opening and Closing nights, panel events and 10 screenings.  Prices and details are available at or call 805-962-8543. 


For festival information, log onto  Also, join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter!  All press must request credentials by logging onto and click on PRESS.


Carol Marshall, Director of Publicity

Stephenie Hope - Publicist

Sheri Goldberg - Publicist

Beth Binker - SBIFF Publicity Assistant

Kristin Ranger - SBIFF Publicity Assistant


For a jpeg of the SBIFF logo please email





Following is the list of World and US Premiere films.  Click here for the complete list of screening times and here for the list of films, along with their descriptions.  Please note that the schedule is subject to change.



(Descriptions available in main list)


180 South, USA

Directed by Chris Malloy


Blue Belle, USA

Directed by Perry Lang


Disappointment Valley...A Modern Day Western, USA

Directed by James Kleinart


Flying Lessons, USA - OPENING NIGHT

Directed by Derek Magyar


God Went Surfing With The Devil, USA

Directed by Alexander Klein


Hana Surf Girls, USA

Directed by Russ Spencer


In The Land of the Free..., USA/UK

Directed by Vadim Jean


Last Paradise, New Zealand

Directed by Clive Neeson


Middle Men, USA

Directed by George Gallo


Mission to Toyland, USA

Directed by Erik Hatch

Provinces of Night, USA

Directed by Shane Dax Taylor


Ten Stories Tall, USA

Directed by David Garrett


The Desert of Forbidden Art, Russian Federation/USA/Uzbekistan

Directed by Tchavdar Georgiev, Amanda Pope


The Elephant in the Living Room, USA

Directed by Michael Webber


The Legend of Stuart Mossman, USA

Directed by Barry K. Brown


The University of Nuclear Bombs, USA

Directed by Joshua King, Mohhmed Elsali


Waiting For Forever, USA

Directed by James Keach


When The Dragon Swallowed the Sun, USA

Directed by Dirk Simon



(Descriptions available in main list)


2501 Migrantes, Mexico

Directed by Yolanda Cruz


A Distant Place (Un lugar lejano), Venezuela

Directed by José Ramón Novoa


A Murder of Crows, Canada/France

Directed by Susan Fleming


A Thousand Year Song of Baobob (Baobabu no kioku), Japan

Directed by Seiichi Motohashi


Accident, Hong Kong

Directed by Pou-Soi Cheang


Amalfi:  Rewards of the Goddess (Amarufi: megami no hôshû), Japan

Directed by Hiroshi Nishitani


Ashkan, The Charmed Ring and Other Stories (Ashkan, angoshtar-e motebarek va dastan-haye digar), Iran

Directed by Shahram Mokri


Ballad (Ballad:  Na mo naki koi no uta), Japan

Directed by Takashi Yamazaki


Black Sheep (Oveja negra), Mexico

Directed by Humberto Hinojosa Ozcariz


Carlitos and the Chance of a Lifetime (Carlitos y el campo de los sueños), Spain

Directed by Jesús del Cerro


City of Shadows, Canada

Directed by Kim Nguyen


El Paso, Czech Republic

Directed by Zdenek Tyc


Exam, UK

Directed by Stuart Hazeldine


Green Waters (Aguas verdes), Argentina

Directed by Mariano De Rosa


Herman, Iraq

Directed by Hussein Hassan


Honeymoons, Serbia/Albania

Directed by Goran Paskaljevic


Je me souviens, Canada

Directed by André Forcier


Katalin Varga, Romania/UK

Directed by Peter Strickland


Kick Off, Iran

Directed by Shawkat Amin Korki


Losing Balance (Draussen am See), Germany

Directed by Felix Fuchssteiner


South of the Border, USA

Directed by Oliver Stone


The Hungry Ghosts, USA

Directed by Michael Imperioli


The Monk and The Mermaid, The Song of Charles Lloyd, France

Directed by Fara C.


The Nothing Men, Australia

Directed by Mark Fitzpatrick


The Race, Ireland

Directed by André F. Nebe


True Noon, Tajikistan

Directed by Nosir Saidov


Twenty (Bist), Iran

Directed by Abdolreza Kahani


Zero, Poland

Directed by Pawel Borowski

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