Posted by Larry Gleeson

SANTA BARBARA, CA (March 31, 2021) – The 36th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) is thrilled to announce this year’s panelists for the always riveting Industry Panel series.

In addition to the A-list, Oscar-nominee-laden Tributes, and the well-curated film program, the SBIFF Industry Panels are another key component of what makes the festival so special.  The Writers Panel is arguable the hottest ticket to come by followed closely by the Women’s Panel and the Producers Panel.

“Look at that line-up! All the movies nominated for the Oscars are represented. The panels have always had a special place in our hearts, and this year’s slate is possibly the best ever!” commented Roger Durling, SBIFF’s Executive Director.

The Producers Panel brings together some of the industry’s leading producers to provide insight into the business as well as the creative sides of producing. The Producers Panel will be a live-streamed event Saturday, April 3 at 11:00 am PT, moderated by the Los Angeles Times’ Glenn Whipp. Panelists include Shaka King (Judas and the Black Messiah), Christina Oh (Minari), Ceán Chaffin (Mank), Dan Janvey (Nomadland), David Parfitt (The Father), Josey McNamara (Promising Young Woman), Marc Platt (The Trial of the Chicago 7), and Sacha Ben Harroche (Sound of Metal)

The Writers Panel brings top writers together to converse about what it takes to write a script and about their journeys to the big screen. The Writers Panel will be a live-streamed event Saturday, April 3 at 2:00 pm PT, moderated by Indiewire’s Anne Thompson. Panelists include Aaron Sorkin (The Trial of the Chicago 7), Darius Marder (Sound of Metal), Emerald Fennell (Promising Young Woman), Florian Zeller (The Father), Kemp Powers (Soul and One Night in Miami), Kenny and Keith Lucas (Judas and the Black Messiah), Lee Isaac Chung (Minari), Ramin Bahrani (The White Tiger), and Peter Baynham (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm).

Women from all stages of film production come together to discuss the unique challenges they have faced and successes they have had in the film industry. The Women’s Panel will be a live-streamed event Thursday, April 8 at 2:00 pm PT, moderated by Madelyn Hammond. Panelists include Dana Murray (Soul – Producer), Elvira Lind (The Letter Room – Writer/Director), Garret Bradley (Time – Director), Kori Rae (Onward – Producer), Madeline Sharafian (Pixar’s Burrow – Director), Michele Couttolenc (Sound of Metal – Sound Design), Trish Summerville (Mank – Costume Design), and Tiara Thomas (Fight For You – Co-Writer Oscar-nominated song from “Judas and the Black Messiah).

The 36th Santa Barbara International Film Festival, presented by UGG, will take place March 31st through April 10, 2021, online and at two free ocean-front drive-in theatres sponsored by Toyota. More information, festival passes, and tickets are available at

*Featured image: Pre-festival screen checks in the lower Santa Barbara City College lots for the 2021 Santa Barbara International Film Festival (Photo by Larry Gleeson)

About the Santa Barbara International Film Festival

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts and educational organization dedicated to discovering and showcasing the best in independent and international cinema. Over the past 35 years, SBIFF has become one of the leading film festivals in the United States – attracting 100,000+ attendees and offering 11 days of 200+ films, tributes, and symposiums, fulfilling their mission to engage, enrich, and inspire the Santa Barbara community through film.

In 2016, SBIFF entered a new era with the acquisition of the historic and beloved Riviera Theatre. After a capital campaign and renovation, the theatre is now SBIFF’s new state-of-the-art, year-round home, showing new international and independent films every day. In 2019, SBIFF opened its own Education Center in downtown Santa Barbara on State Street to serve as a home for its many educational programs and a place for creativity and learning.

(Press release provided by Michelle Tarangelo, SBIFF Press Office, )