Posted by Larry Gleeson

Located halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, surrounded by lush vineyards, ranchland and a 100-mile coastline, the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival (SLOIFF) is headquartered in the quaint, sophisticated downtown of San Luis Obispo on the spectacular Central Coast of California. As a premiere 6-day annual event, the SLOIFF showcases contemporary and classic film screenings in a wide variety of venues, from the city’s classic art deco Fremont Theatre, to the popular independent Palm Theatre, with a variety of unexpected venues from the wine country of Paso Robles to the seaside towns of Avila Beach and Pismo Beach.

This year marks the 23rd year for the festival with run dates of March 14-19. Tickets and passes are still available here.

That being said variety is the spice of life, and the SLOIFF is proud to embrace that philosophy in its programming. From cutting edge documentaries to tried and true cinema classics, the SLOIFF celebrates film on the ‘big screen’ by offering something for everyone. Experience HOLLYWOOD & VINES EVENTS that pair excellent local wines with film classics. Or the RED CARPET EVENTS, where celebrities from Hollywood filmmakers to action sports legends are welcomed.

This year’s Opening Night is blasting off with a New Orleans style theme party followed by Leslie Iwerks new film, “ELLA BRENNAN: Commanding the Table,” about one of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants, Commander’s Palace. The evening is sponsored by Jim Sargen, Taste Buds, The Krush 92.5, Cafe Musique and the following restaurants & caterers:

Baklava RoyaleThe Spoon TradeGiuseppe’s, ChipwreckedPapi’s GrillBunn Thai, The Cracked CrabEfren’s Mexican RestaurantJeffery’s CateringApple FarmOki Momo Asian GrillVivant Fine CheesesSurfside Deli, and Bon Temps Creole Cafe

And libations from: Amplify WinesBaker and Brian, Barrel House BrewingField RecordingsOpolo VineyardKynsi WineryCass Winery, The Central RoastTimbre Wines, Puffers of Pismo, Robin Bogue formerly of William James, Summerland Wines, Cambria Wines, Talley Vineyards and M Special Brewing Company.

And afterward Opening night enjoy premieres of INDEPENDENT FILMS – films that you may not have a chance to see anywhere else. Filmmakers from all over the world attend the Festival and offer informative Q & A sessions after the screening of their films.Last year’s Borrowed Time made it all the way to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences 2017 Oscars as an animated short.

This is a film festival and locale on the move within the filmmaking world. If you haven’t made it yet, get there. You’ll be glad you did! Check out this year’s Lineup and create your own film viewing schedule. I did.

See you at the cinema!

SLOIFF MISSION STATEMENT: To entertain, educate and inspire film-goers and filmmakers. Movies Matter!

SLOIFF VISION STATEMENT: The SLOIFF will continue to grow in importance as a successful regional event, providing cultural and economic benefit to San Luis Obispo County by promoting the concept that “Movies Matter” and that the art of film is a cultural force with the capacity to transform lives of individuals and society at large, we will nurture new filmmakers, attract new audiences, and develop film-related youth outreach and education programs. We will expand collaboration with other community non-profits, and the local hospitality and wine industries with events that emphasize the uniqueness of our area.

(Source: slofilmfest.org)

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