The 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World, 2018

San Francisco International Film Festival

April 2019 / San Francisco, CA /

“This is a film lover’s city” one panelist declares, and it’s only fitting that the coastal California metropolis captured so beautifully in many iconic films plays host to its one of the longest-running film fests in the Americas each Spring. To give a small taste of the fest’s pedigree, Executive Director Noah Cowan joined the team in 2014 from TIFF, replacing the now-ubiquitous Amazon Studios Head Ted Hope. The panelist explains the perfect marriage of this fest and the historic city thusly: “The festival was felt throughout the city as an important event—whether it’s a premiere at the classic Castro Theatre or meet-up with a mix of fellow filmgoers and Oscar winners at a dive bar for a good time.”

San Francisco International Film Festival held at Castro Theater. Photograph courtesy of San Francisco International Film Festival

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  1. Sam

    August 18, 2018 at 10:16 am

    CiNEWORX is proud to Sponsor and Partner with SFF for 5 years running providing Digital Content (DCPS) for the Fest! Congrats SFF for making it 3 years running as one of the top 25 COOLEST FILM FESTIVALS to attend.

  2. ron

    July 10, 2018 at 5:10 pm

    How about calling it “Our reviewers 25 favorite festivals” — for these are festivals that your jury has presumably been to and likes — and that’s fine. To call it the world’s 25 coolest is a wee bit presumptuous, no?

  3. Duncan Putney

    July 9, 2018 at 2:52 pm

    Have you heard about the Flickers – Children’s Hospitals International Film Festival (CHIFF)? This new and growing festival provides a free program of new and amazing short films to the patients of children’s hospitals in the US and Canada (and soon Europe) and its the kids who vote on the award winners at each two week hospital event. CHIFF is part of the Rhode Island International Film Festival. CHIFF was recently endorsed by the US Surgeon General who said that great films are great medicine. How cool is that? You can find CHIFF on Facebook and Twitter using @FlickersCHIFF.

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