The 7th Annual Sonoma Valley Film Festival will take place April 1 - 4 in Sonoma, California. Sonoma is located 40 miles north of San Francisco, in the heart of the wine country in Northern California.

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. 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. The festival is expected to draw 12,000 this year.

Movieweb attended the festival last year (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, this is a fun 4-day festival.

Movie PictureThis year's opening night film is Mayor of the Sunset Strip, a feature-length documentary about the life and times of Rodney Bingenheimer, a Los Angeles DJ who has launched the careers of a multitude of bands/musicians who clearly have not forgotten what Rodney’s done for them. The film features David Bowie, Cher, Blondie, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Gwen Stefani, Brian Wilson, Alice Cooper and more than 40 other musicians who know Rodney.

A "Special Tribute" ceremony will be given to Blythe Danner on April 2.

The closing night film is Saved! starring Jena Malone and Mandy Moore.

For more information about the SVFF or to purchase passes, visit or contact the Sonoma Valley Film Festival at (707) 933-2600.