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Serving Makers & Audiences

The Mission:


As Sacramento's festival dedicated solely to Cinema art, our mission is to be a catalyst for greater appreciation of cinema as art, build the local filmmaking community, and work with Hollywood and independents alike to showcase Northern California as a dynamic place to shoot and screen movies.  



By supplying essential networking opportunities and open dialogue with intelligent, creative and inquisitive filmmakers and consumers, the festival attracts audiences from many places and serves to promote the Sacramento community as a cultural center for our region.


About Us

What we do:


The Sacramento International Film Festival (SFF) is an unincorporated arts association with year-round activities, culminating in an annual film celebration in April/May of each year.


With the support of a passionate arts community, SFF offers programming and events for film enthusiasts of all cultural backgrounds. In addition SFF attracts distinguished industry guests, and filmmakers from around the world. As a centerpiece for film arts in Northern California Filmmakers, fans enjoy the Festival for its exceptional hospitality and its commitment to visionary artists. We are proud to offer this first-class event in celebration of artists and their craft.

A Cinematic Legacy

Our History


Originally known as Sacramento's Festival of Cinema, the event began in 1995 as the brainchild of Founder Kenneth Segura Knoll. With seed money acquired from beloved late Sacramento Mayor Joe Serna,  Knoll had the vision to bring a first-class cinematic event to Sacramento in support of cinema arts.


In 1998, Knoll transferred full control to Access Sacramento, the region's local community media center with whom he had partnered since the festival's inception. Access Sacramento hosted the event through 2004 under the leadership of Executive Director Ron Cooper and Festival Managing Director Martin Anaya. In 2004, Access Sacramento decided to focus its energy on the Festival's all-local "Place Called Sacramento" film program and gave Martin Anaya its blessing to continue the larger festival. Thus, the modern  Sacramento International Film Festival was born.   


A New Era

Cinema Excitement


 In 2005, the SFF widened its focus to emphasize diversity with new programs like Cine Soul (the Sacramento Black Film Festival) and Cine Latino (the Sacramento Latino Film Festival). The festival also supports local filmmakers through innovative programs like  NorCal All-Stars, and its Future Visionaries youth showcase.

 To educate visiting creators and audiences, SFF presented the Digital Odyssey Conference for the first time in 2008. Billed as the world's 1st "Transmedia Conference", the showcase features speakers and presentations on a variety of media including TV/on-line/music and publishing. In the spirit of digital video's speedy turnaround, the festival began its own 48-Hour Film competition in 2007, challenging filmmakers to create films on a two-day timeline.

SFF has played premiered many award-winning films, including Julie & Julia, Young Victoria, and Academy Award Winners Binta and the Great Idea and Slumdog Millionaire. It has also been our honor to welcome distinguished guests John Daly (Platoon, The Last Emperor), Joe Carnahan (Narc, Smokin' Aces, The A-Team), Michael Madsen (Kill Bill, Reservoir Dogs), Vicky Jenson (Shrek, Shark Tale), and John Ottman (The Usual Suspects, X-Men 2).


 We have made it our calling to bring cinema dreams to life. We continue with that mission today amidst an evolving industry and an ever-changing world.




Our Partner, CFF

Supporting Filmmakers


The California Film Foundation

Our sister organization, the California Film Foundation offers the opportunity for professionals from all over Northern California to meet, create, and learn through its monthly meetings and online social network. Bringing in guest speakers each month, the foundation has the largest and oldest network of professional filmmakers in the Sacramento region. The foundation is also the home of the film festival's A-Team a group of volunteers who help coordinate the festival.

Membership is free to all in the hope that every filmmaker in the region has the opportunity to utilize the foundation's network, resources, and collective cinematic knowledge. If your are interested in joining, please visit the California Film Foundation's website

The Future

Sff has laid the groundwork to become not just the premiere film event in the capital region but one of the premiere cinema celebrations in the country. Look for many more programs, special guests and year round activities in the future.


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