At Lunch With: Rory Kennedy
Details: Celebrate the accomplishments of a film icon at our Tribute Luncheon with Rory Kennedy. Enjoy an intimate lunch at the Sarasota Yacht Club while mingling with industry VIPs and film lovers from all over the globe.
When/where: 11:30 a.m. March 31, Sarasota Yacht Club
Opening Night Film: “Take Every Wave: the Life of Laird Hamilton”
Details: Big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton has always seemed like an action figure sprung to life, complete with extraordinary physical abilities, a penchant for criss-crossing the globe, and a complete lack of fear. In director Rory Kennedy’s exhilarating, careening and intimate documentary, we follow the charismatic Hamilton during a winter surf season on Hawaii’s Kauai Island, where Hamilton grew up and where an approaching El Nino storm system may now provide unprecedented waves for him to conquer.
When/where: 6:30 p.m. March 31, Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota
Opening Night Party
Details: SFF kicks off its 10-day celebration of film with a block party gala at the historic Sarasota Opera House featuring fine hors d’oeuvres, bottomless beer, wine, and a SFF signature cocktail. Musical performance by Jah Movement. Cash bar available for all other beverage purchases.
When/where: 9 p.m. March 31, Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota.
Tickets (party only): $100-$150.
Through Women’s Eyes Reception
Details: Come mingle with the filmmakers of the Through Womens Eyes Festival. Music by Stephen Fancher. Film at the Hollywood 20 to follow the reception.
When/where: 5:30-7:30 p.m. April 1, Sarasota City Center, 1819 Main St., Sarasota
Special Screening: VFA Premiere
Details: The Sarasota Film Festival in collaboration with Project Rebirth are proud to present the first ever Veteran’s Filmmaking Academy world premiere: “Returning.” This film was created, directed, and produced by the inaugural class of the SFF Veteran’s Filmmaking Academy (VFA), and explores the impact of Veteran’s Treatment Court and peer counseling on veteran rehabilitation, and ultimately, successful reintegration into civilian life after deployment.
When/where: 6:30 p.m. April 4, Sarasota Opera House
Sea and Be Scene
Details: A spectacular evening of decadent food and cocktails with live performances by Sarasota’s own Hannah Jae, as well as NPR’s All Songs Considered alums, Twin Limb. This congregation of Festival VIPs and top talent is always full of surprises.
When/where: 8 p.m. April 7, J.D. Hamel Park, South Gulfstream Avenue, Sarasota
Tickets: $50 general, $150 VIP
Closing Night Film & Awards: “Paris Can Wait”
Details: A screening of “Paris Can Wait” starring Diane Lane, who will walk the red carpet.
When/where: 5 p.m. red carpet, 6 p.m. awards ceremony, 7 p.m. film, April 8, Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota.
Details: Celebrate the final night of the festival. Share Big Top beers with friends, filmmakers and industry guests. Acclaimed Atlanta electro-disco duo Hank & Cupcakes.
When/where: 10:30 p.m. April 8, Sky Bar & Club, 1927 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota.
Packages are available. Discounts available for Sarasota Film Festival memebers. Tickets are available at sarasotafilmfestival.com or by calling 941-366-6200.
In Conversation With
Details: Cinema stars who appear in festival films discuss their careers and their craft. The lineup includes, Rosie Perez (6:30 p.m. April 3), Matthew Modine (10 a.m. April 9) and George Hamilton and Treat Williams (4 p.m. April 9).
Where: Florida Studio Theatre, 1241 N. Palm Ave., Sarasota.