The Brain Trust​


Ken is the original founder of the Sacramento International Film Festival. Known as the Sacramento Festival of Cinema from 1995 when it was founded, the event has grown into a jewel of the Northern California art scene.
In 2016, with the screening of Colin Hanks' seminal film on the founding of Tower Records, "All Things Must pass", Ken was awarded our "Founders Award" for his tireless efforts to promote local art. 



Social entrepreneur and multi-media producer, Martin Anaya was the original Managing Director of the Sac Film Fest from 1998 to 2005 before becoming the Executive Director.

Since then, Mr. Anaya has expanded the scope and brand of the Sacramento Film Festival by adding conferences like the DIGITAL ODYSSEY and AMERICAN SCREENWRITING conferences and partnering with the CALIFORNIA FILM FOUNDATION. Considered the fastest growing festival in California, The Sacramento Film Festival continues to expand under Mr. Anaya's leadership and is now an 8-day, multi-venue event.



Through his role as Executive Director at Access Sacramento, Ron partnered with Ken Knoll and supported the Festival of Cinema since its founding. In 1998 Ron took the festival under AC/SAC's wing to manage. From 1998 to 2004 the Festival was managed by Access Sacramento, the region's Public Access TV station. To this day AC/SAC still manages the highly popular spin-off event, "A PLACE CALLED SACRAMENTO". 

An MFA holder from UCLA in screenwriting, Dawn spent her early years learning from the masters, Dr. Lew Hunter (The God Father of Screenwriting), Richard Walter and many greats. A writer and director in her own right, Dawn has taught our California Film Foundation screenwriting class for many years and plays host, once a year, to American Screenwriters Conference. The event has hosted many screenwriters and has featured the works of Shia Lebeouf, Dr. Lew and many top screenwriters.  



Long-time actor and arts impresario, Vince Miles has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry including Steven Spielberg, Denzel Washington, Ice Cube, Jamie Foxx, Andy Griffith, Dick Van Dyke & Walter Matthau to name a few. In 2005, Vince was asked to helm the fledgling Sacramento Black Film Festival (Cine Soul). Since then, Vince has overseen the screening of more than 300 films that celebrate the width and depth of the African cinema diaspora.

Most people know Russ Solomon as the affable creator of Tower Records. What many do NOT know is that in 1995 when Ken Knoll was putting together a film festival for Sacramento, it was Russ who stepped up to create and manage a student aspect called "Tower of Youth". In 2016 at the same screening of the Colin Hanks film, "All Things Must Pass", Russ was given a Founder's award for his amazing contibution.  



            Jorge A. Santana was born in Rosarito Mexico, raised in California and completed his doctorate in Filosofía y Letras at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain.  Dr. Santana taught Spanish culture studies at California State University for 37 years. His videos and photos have been published in numerous books, TV shows and magazines, winning him the SEVA award (Sacramento Educational Video Award).  Jorge serves as the Director of Cine Lationo ( The Sacramento Latino Film Festival). Working closely with partners like the Mexican Counselot and other community stake holders, Jorge brings the joy of Latin cinema to California audiences.

Dubbed the "Godfather of American screenwriting" by Francis Coppola, Lewis R. Hunter (born July 18, 1935) is an America screenwriter, author and educator and is chairman Emeritus and Professor of Screenwriting at the UCLA department of film and television and founder of The American Screenwriting Conference, held each year with the Sac Film Fest...

Over half of the Oscar-winning scripts over the past twenty years have been written by students of Hunter. His former students and advocates include such people as Adrienne Parks, Allison Anders, David Koepp David Koepp, David Titcherr, James Dalessandro, Diane Saltzberg, Don Mancini, Kathy Stumpe and Alexander Payne to name a few.  

In addition to being a world-renown coach, Dr. Lew has written many produced screenplays and has served as a development executive for several top Hollywood studios. Steven Spielberg calls Lew "the best screenwriting teacher going. Lew's famous book, "Screenwriting 434" is considered by many, the Bible of how to write a screenplay.


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