34th Annual Santa Barbara Film Festival Begins Wednesday
By edhat staff
The 34th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) will kick off with its traditional opening film on Wednesday.
The festival will feature 63 world premieres and 59 U.S. premieres from 48 countries, along with tributes with the year’s top talent, panel discussions, and free community education and outreach programs.
Critically-acclaimed actor Rami Malek will receive the Outstanding Performer of the Year Award for his Academy Award-nominated work in Bohemian Rhapsody. Glenn Close will receive the Maltin Modern Master Award for her role in The Wife. Michael B. Jordan returns to SBIFF for his work in Black Panther and Creed II. Viggo Mortensen will receive the American Riviera Award for his work in Green Book. Melissa McCarthy will receive the Montecito Award for her performance in Can You Ever Forgive Me?
This year's Virtuosos Awards go to: Yalitza Aparicio (Roma), Sam Elliott (A Star is Born), Elsie Fisher (Eighth Grade), Claire Foy (First Man), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), Thomasin McKenzie (Leave No Trace), John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman), and Steven Yeun (Burning).
The festival begins at the Arlington Theatre with the world premiere of Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruy directed by Mimi deGruy. The documentary focuses on Mike deGruy, an irrepressible biologist turned award-winning filmmaker who swam, dived and filmed in oceans around the world and in the process became the first to film many rarely seen creatures in their own oceans. In 2012, deGruy died tragically in a helicopter crash in Australia while filming for director James Cameron.
Following the film, the Opening Night Gala, will take place in the Paseo Nuevo mall featuring entertainment, food, libations, and a chance to celebrate the start of SBIFF.
The festival will conclude on February 9 at the Arlington Theatre with the world premiere of Spoons: A Santa Barbara Story directed by Wyatt Daily. Spoons is an exploration of how one of the most significant corners of the world produced, and continues to produce, some of the most talented surfers and innovators. Deeper than all is a story of craftsmanship, work ethic, renegades and tradition. This is a film that goes beyond the time spent in the ocean to define how one spends a lifetime.
Tickets for the Santa Barbara International Film Festival can be purchased here.