Sunscreen Film Fest 2023

Top Filmmaking Around the Globe
and In Our Own Backyard

April 27-30
St. Petersburg
Details here

Here are some highlights I’m looking forward to at the Sunscreen Film Festival.

Nathalie Boltt plays Penelope Blossom in the hit series Riverdale (she’s also a Director on the show), her film A.T.A.C.K. is part of the comedy shorts program.  She will be in town.

Ashlie Avis, from St. Pete wrote and Directed Black Beauty on Disney+ has a film in the Fest Wild Beauty: Mustang Spirit of the West.

Ibiza Blue, Filmmaker flying in from Spain. Jesús Lloveras worked on the Spanish Netflix hit series Money Heist.

115 Grains, a local film that worked very close with the St. Pete PD, who have officers in the film – along with St. Pete’s Eugenie Bondurant. Focuses on suicide prevention for Police Officers. Really good film.

Director Andrew Kiaroscuro’s dad was a police officer who committed suicide and inspired him to make this.

Token Taverns – a great documentary about pinball and old school video game arcades. Filmmakers are local.

Lift, filmmaker coming in from New York. Over ten years in the making, Lift shines a spotlight on the invisible story of homelessness in America through the eyes of young, underprivileged ballet dancers.

Guided by their mentor who began his dance career in a homeless shelter, these children make this aristocratic art form their own when they step from the shelter to the stage.

Four Souls of Coyote, an amazing animated film, the director Áron Gauder is flying in from Hungary. Native American teenagers confront an oil pipeline project, just down the hill from their ancestral land.

The grandfather evokes the ancient tale of their Creation, reminding all of us that we need to find our place in the great circle of creatures.

Vira, by Ukranian filmmaker Iryna Shumaieva.  She’s flying in from London for the festival. Little Vira dreams of simple things. Tomorrow is her birthday! She wants to be popular in the school, to be liked by Ivan, a boy with whom she studies in the same class, to celebrate her tenth birthday with the closest people.

The day before her birthday she sees the war start.
. . .

Filmmaking Workshops

. . .
Headlining the workshops is Mitchell Bell, Vice President of Physical Production at Marvel Studios.  Mitch has been a part of every Marvel film and TV series since the first Iron Man film in 2008.  Mitch was recently named one of Hollywood’s Top Physical Production Executives of 2023 by the Hollywood Reporter.

On Friday April 28 from 11-12:30 pm Mitch will speak on the MARVEL Workshop – a one-on-one conversation with one of Hollywood’s most powerful execs and producers. Mitch will talk about everything from the production process inside Hollywood’s biggest studio, to the direction of creative content in the industry. There will also be a Q&A, so have your Marvel queries prepared and ready to go – and as Stan Lee used to say, “Excelsior!!!”

Mitchell will speak on a total of four workshops throughout the festival.

Other workshop cover acting, film finance and distribution, directing, writing and more. Notable speakers include actors Erin Cahill (Christmas Bedtime StoriesJesse Kove (Cobra KaiMoney Run), Martin Kove (Cobra Kai, Karate Kid), Corin Nemec (Parker Lewis Can’t Lose) and Eugenie Bondurant (Hunger Games and many more).

Directors who’ll be presenting include Ashley Avis (Black Beauty), Nathalie Boltt (Riverdale), Producers Ramfis Myrthil (Cicada), David Yates (Dolphin Tale 1 & 2).

All told there will be 13 workshops throughout the four days of the festival.

I’ve spoken on, moderated and attended workshops and panels at some of the world’s biggest film festivals – from Cannes, to Sundance, Toronto and more. The quality of workshops at Sunscreen are as good as and better in some cases than those and many other festivals.

You do need a Day, VIP, Filmmaker or Sponsor pass to attend any workshops.  You can find ticket information here.


You can find the complete schedule
of films and workshops here



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