The 9th Annual Sonoma Valley Film Festival will take place Wednesday, April 5 - Sunday, April 9 in Sonoma, California. Sonoma is located 40 miles north of San Francisco, in the heart of the wine country in Northern California. Highlights of this year's Festival include six world premieres, one North American premiere and 15 West Coast premieres.
Among the film industry luminaries scheduled to attend the 20065 Festival are Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon), Julie Delpy, (Before Sunset), Patricia Heaton, (Everybody Loves Raymond), Melissa Joan Hart, (Sabrina the Teenage Witch), Tony Shalhoub (Monk), director Penelope Spheeris (The Decline of Western Civilization), and Oscar-winning Pixar director John Lasseter (Toy Story, Toy Story 2, A Bug's Life, Cars).
The SVFF, also known as "Cinema Epicuria" is unlike most other film festivals ... celebrating independent film-making as well as Sonoma's epicurean pleasures of fine food, award-winning wine, fine art and the area's unparalleled natural beauty. Every day is filled with receptions, dinners and parties hosted by local restaurants and wineries in the area. No other film festival can boast of having wine and food pairings at each screening!
Unlike the bigger, industry dominated festivals (i.e. Sundance, Cannes,...), the SVFF is more laid back in that you don't have to be a celebrity to attend these daily events.
Movieweb attended the festival three years ago (for the first time) and it was a pleasant experience overall. Many film festivals we have attended (including smaller ones) are geared towards those who are "in the business" and this film festival has a certain vibe, where people can meet, drink wine and hang out with others who love movies ... and that it is somewhat easy to come up and chat with a filmmaker.
For those that equally enjoy good food, good wine, and good movies, we highly recommend taking a few business days off and hanging out in Sonoma for this fun 5-day festival.
For more information about the SVFF or to purchase passes, visit Cinemaepicuria.org or contact the Sonoma Valley Film Festival at (707) 933-2600.