Tag Archives: Santa Barbara International Film Festival

Movies, fame and Jane: SBIFF honors Jane Fonda at annual fundraiser

Jane Fonda received the Kirk Douglas Award from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival on Saturday at the Bacara Resort & Spa. KENNETH SONG/NEWS-PRESS PHOTO
Jane Fonda received the Kirk Douglas Award from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival on Saturday at the Bacara Resort & Spa.
KENNETH SONG/NEWS-PRESS PHOTO

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival honored movie star, writer, activist and feminist icon Jane Fonda at its annual fundraiser Saturday with the 10th annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film.

The black-tie gala at the Bacara Resort & Spa recognized the iconic movie star in much the same way as the honors and tribute evenings that make up the February festival’s week-plus schedule.

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SBIFF’s Closing Night film ‘McFarland, USA’ is a true story of overcoming odds

Director Niki Caro Bobby Quillard
Director Niki Caro
Bobby Quillard

Tomorrow will be the last day of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, and the closing night film is set to inspire and warm hearts in a story set in the San Joaquin Valley. Kevin Costner and director Niki Caro will be in attendance.

“McFarland, USA” tells the true story of coach Jim White (Kevin Costner), who accepts a job at a high school in McFarland, a tiny farming community, mostly Latino, and not only creates their first cross-country running team, but then takes them to Nationals.

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Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette of “Boyhood” share career memories

Ethan Hawke signs autographs before the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's American Riviera Awards Tribute at the Arlington Theatre. Mr. Hawke and costar Patricia Arquette received the award for their work in "Boyhood."
Ethan Hawke signs autographs before the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s American Riviera Awards Tribute at the Arlington Theatre. Mr. Hawke and costar Patricia Arquette received the award for their work in “Boyhood.”

Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette have amassed such a body of work individually that either actor could have been the subject of Thursday night’s American Riviera Award at the Arlington Theatre, the penultimate tribute of this year’s Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

But after last year’s stunning “Boyhood,” in which they play parents to the lead character Mason (Ellar Coltrane), it only made sense to honor both at the same time.

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Getting their due: New SBIFF award honors filmmaking’s unsung heroes

Sandra Adair, editor of "Boyhood," speaks to reporters before the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Variety Artisans Awards were presented at the Lobero Theatre.
Sandra Adair, editor of “Boyhood,” speaks to reporters before the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Variety Artisans Awards were presented at the Lobero Theatre.

For years, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival has honored actors, directors, writers and producers, the big names that film buffs know and follow.

But so many more jobs happen behind the scenes of a movie, essential ones that only really get talked about come Oscar season.

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Hollywood magic: Producers Panel shows that there’s many ways to get a film made

SBIFF brought in seven producers of last year's best movies to talk about the often long and difficult road taken from idea to premiere. The popular annual panel featured, from left, Los Angeles Times film writer and panel moderator Glenn Whipp, Cathleen Sutherland ("Boyhood"), Teddy Schwarzman ("The Imitation Game"), Robert Lorenz ("American Sniper"), John Lesher ("Birdman"), Jon Kilik ("Foxcatcher"), Jeremy Dawson ("The Grand Budapest Hotel") and Lisa Bruce ("The Theory of Everything"). NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS
SBIFF brought in seven producers of last year’s best movies to talk about the often long and difficult road taken from idea to premiere. The popular annual panel featured, from left, Los Angeles Times film writer and panel moderator Glenn Whipp, Cathleen Sutherland (“Boyhood”), Teddy Schwarzman (“The Imitation Game”), Robert Lorenz (“American Sniper”), John Lesher (“Birdman”), Jon Kilik (“Foxcatcher”), Jeremy Dawson (“The Grand Budapest Hotel”) and Lisa Bruce (“The Theory of Everything”).
NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS

Santa Barbara film lovers packed the Lobero Theatre Saturday for the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Producers Panel. Although one of the speakers joked about having to explain to Mom what a producer actually does, the audience seemed to know, as attendees sat rapt listening to the often-entertaining stories of the struggle of movie-making. Despite large budgets and years of industry experience, things sometimes go wrong, and sometimes ingenuity is the best weapon.

Los Angeles Times film writer Glenn Whipp sat down with six producers of this year’s Best Picture Oscar nominees: Cathleen Sutherland (“Boyhood”), Teddy Schwarzman (“The Imitation Game”), Robert Lorenz (“American Sniper”), John Lesher (“Birdman”), Jeremy Dawson (“The Grand Budapest Hotel”) and Lisa Bruce (“The Theory of Everything”). Jon Kilik of “Foxcatcher,” also on the panel, didn’t get a Best Picture nomination this year but took his “snub” with great humor. (He was nominated in 2007 for a Best Picture Oscar for “Babel,” so he’s in the club.)

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SBIFF honors Michael Keaton, from ‘Night Shift’ to ‘Birdman’

Michael Keaton speaks to reporters before entering the Arlington Theatre to accept the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Modern Master Award for his performance in "Birdman." NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS PHOTOS
Michael Keaton speaks to reporters before entering the Arlington Theatre to accept the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Modern Master Award for his performance in “Birdman.”
NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS PHOTOS

For many movie fans, Michael Keaton’s Oscar-nominated role in “Birdman” was so good people wondered where the star had been for so many years.

But as Leonard Maltin, moderator for SBIFF’s Modern Master Award, pointed out on Saturday night at the Arlington Theatre, “He’s never gone away. But it’s been a little while since we’ve seen a performance that’s been able to showcase his talent as fully and richly as ‘Birdman’ does.”

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SBIFF honors Jennifer Aniston for her work in Cake

Jennifer Aniston signs autographs for fans outside the Arlington Theatre on Friday night, before receiving the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Montecito Award. NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS PHOTOS
Jennifer Aniston signs autographs for fans outside the Arlington Theatre on Friday night, before receiving the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Montecito Award.
NIK BLASKOVICH/NEWS-PRESS PHOTOS

Jennifer Aniston has spent a career trying to rise above the tabloids and the paparazzi that have recorded her every move and emotion, calling it “white noise” tonight on the red carpet outside the Arlington Theatre, where she was to be awarded the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Montecito Award for her career and her Golden Globe nominated role in the indie drama “Cake,” which only just opened in Santa Barbara.

But the star got a little of both slavish fan treatment and serious consideration tonight at this sold out show. The celebrity photo bank on the red carpet was a noisy, crazed affair, with shoving and elbows among the photographers trying to get a shot of the star. The crowds outside screamed and hollered and got autographs, a group of girls who looked like they were born in the early ’90s sang the theme song to “Friends” in a loop as Ms. Aniston talked to the press. And inside the audience was just as heated and excited, as she sat down with Deadline Hollywood’s Pete Hammond.

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The Gardens live on: SBIFF documentary profiles one of Santa Barbara’s most beloved bars

Jimmy's Oriental Gardens was open from 1947 to 2006. Casey McGarry
Jimmy’s Oriental Gardens was open from 1947 to 2006.
Casey McGarry

The return of Jimmy’s Oriental Gardens, that beloved watering hole, under new owners and the new name of Bob Lovejoy’s Pickle Room is an anomaly. In a world where beloved places vanish or are bought out and torn down, never to return, the case of this bar on Canon Perdido is a cause for celebration, and Casey McGarry’s documentary does right by it.

The 30-something director, who made the documentary in between funding for a longer, even-more personal documentary, remembers the Chinese food from the kitchen half of the establishment as a kid, but was too young to really know where the fun was. But after a chance encounter with Bob Lovejoy, he quickly caught up and knew a story needed to be told.

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The 805 keeps it reel: Local filmmakers at the film fest and how short documentaries show off our town

Ocean explorer Jean-Michel Cousteau, filmmaker Jim Knowlton and a team of scientists explore tiny Swains Island in "Swains Island: One of the Last Jewels on the Planet. SBIFF
Ocean explorer Jean-Michel Cousteau, filmmaker Jim Knowlton and a team of scientists explore tiny Swains Island in “Swains Island: One of the Last Jewels on the Planet.
SBIFF

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival brings Hollywood to our own backyard, but what about the filmmakers who are already here? The festival has long given our writers and directors their own sidebar to show off the many documentaries and fiction films produced here. Some come out of the many production courses available here, others from small production studios and others just have to make films by any means possible.

For the first time this year, SBIFF offers a prize for Best Santa Barbara Feature, and all the contestants are documentaries.

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Dynamic Duo: SBIFF honors Oscar-nominated team Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones

Felicity Jones, star of "The Theory of Everything," speaks to reporters on the red carpet outside the Arlington Theatre on Thursday. Ms. Jones and co-star Eddie Redmayne received the Cinema Vanguard Award from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival NIK BLASKOVICH/ NEWS-PRESS
Felicity Jones, star of “The Theory of Everything,” speaks to reporters on the red carpet outside the Arlington Theatre on Thursday. Ms. Jones and co-star Eddie Redmayne received the Cinema Vanguard Award from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival
NIK BLASKOVICH/ NEWS-PRESS

Actor Eddie Redmayne revealed himself to be as much in awe of Hollywood and the movie-making machine as his fans are in awe of him.

At the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s Cinema Vanguard Award event Thursday at the Arlington Theatre, where he and his co-star Felicity Jones, from “The Theory of Everything,” were honored for their Oscar-nominated performances, the star talked about his first big Tinseltown experience.

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