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San Francisco International Film Festival 2016

SF's Largest Independent Film Festival

The 2016 San Francisco International Film Festival starts on Thursday, April 21. This two-week festival offers a look at more than 180 independent films from up-and-coming directors from around the world.

Heading into its 59th year, this festival is also the longest running film festival in the Americas. Every year, it attracts an audience of more than 70,000 people.

Films for this event are shown at many of SF's top theaters including the Castro Theater, the Victoria Theater and the Roxie Theater in the Mission District.

On opening night, you will get the chance to see one of this year's most anticipated films. After the opening night film, you can enjoy an opening night party with several of this year's film makers.

Closing night is on Thursday, May 5. You will find several films shown this day. After the final film, you can enjoy the closing night party. It's the perfect place to celebrate this year's event and mingle with other independent film lovers.

Here are a few of the top films scheduled in 2016:

  • Opening Night - Love & Friendship: This wonderful comedy by Whit Stillman stars Kate Beckinsale. She plays a sassy social climber. The story is based on the novel by Jane Austen, Lady Susan. The film is on April 21 at 7pm at the Castro Theater.

  • Indignation: The centerpiece of this year's San Francisco International Film Festival is Indignation. It's an adaptation of Philip Roth's top novel of 2008 (with the same name). It shows at the Victoria Theater on April 30 at 8pm.

  • Closing Night - The Bandit: A 1970s classic, The Bandit, tells the story of freindship between two famous Hollywood people, Burt Reynolds and Hal Needham. It is on May 5 at 7pm at the Castro Theater.

Click here to find a full list of films for this year along with ticketing information on their official site.

Top Events in April and May

Cherry Blossom Festival: One of the biggest festivals this spring is the Cherry Blossom Festival in SF's Japantown. Stop by to celebrate the blossoms and enjoy traditional music, dance, and food. Click here for more information.

SF Theater: If you love the San Francisco International Film Festival, you will also enjoy SF's top rated theater productions. Every year, SF attract big Broadway productions such as Wicked, the Book of Mormon, and the Lion King. Almost every night, you will also find several smaller shows at theaters throughout SF. Click here for details and the full theater calendar.

SF Giants Baseball: The SF Giants kick off regular season play in April in San Francisco. They face teams such as the Colorado Rockies, LA Dodgers, and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Find their full schedule here.

Mother's Day: Don't miss out on spoiling your mom this year in San Francisco. The entire day is full of fun activities from shopping in Union Square to special cruises around the SF Bay. You will also find several places to treat your mom to brunch or lunch on her special day. Click here to learn more.

Memorial Day Weekend: One of the biggest holidays this time of year is Memorial Day Weekend. Spend your holiday here in SF with one of the largest Carnaval Celebrations, plenty of places to pay respect to those who fought for our country, and cruises that celebrate this holiday. Click here to learn more.

Places to Stay in San Francisco

If you plan to spend some time in SF during the festival, you will find several great places to spend the night. I recommend finding a spot in either Union Square or Downtown SF so you can easily get around the city.

You will also find some great rates for your stay on Click here to find some additional hotel deals throughout SF.

See More Film Festivals this Year in SF

SF hosts more than 50 film festivals each year. In addition to the San Francisco International Film Festival, you can also enjoy these other top festivals each year:

SF Doc Fest: If you love documentary films, then head over to this year's SF Doc Fest. This annual event features some of the best up-and-coming documentary directors from all around the globe.

SF Frozen Film Festival: This annual festival focuses on the works of independent film makers, youth, and other under served artists. It lasts for two days every July. Click here for details.

SF International Festival of Short Films: This is another popular film festival held in October every year. It offers you the chance to watch some of the best short films of the year. Click here for more details.

All Film Festivals: Are you interested in the other film festivals scheduled each year in San Francisco? Click here to discover a full festival calendar by month.

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