Del Mar resident Julian Feder will be acting as the titular character in the film Po, which will play at the San Diego International Film Festival this year. Po is the true story of a father left to raise his sixth grade son with autism, Po, by himself after his wife falls victim to cancer. As father and son struggle to deal with their loss, they each begin to withdraw into their separate worlds. Po’s father throws himself into the high pressure job he’s close to losing, while Po drifts away from the school where he’s bullied into his own magical fantasy world. The growing divide between father and son and the challenges of single parenthood of a special needs child threaten to separate Po and his father permanently. Po intricately explores the bonds of love between a grieving father and son.

The San Diego International Film Festival (SDiFF), running from Wednesday, September 28 to Sunday, October 2, is the region’s premier showcase for outstanding U.S. and international independent filmmaking. The festival will occupy two unique festival villages – one in La Jolla with ArcLight Cinema, Westfield UTC, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, and one in downtown San Diego, encompassing several theaters and venues in and around the Gaslamp Quarter. Produced by the San Diego Film Foundation, the five-day event will feature 100+ independent films, studio premieres, panels with celebrities and industry insiders, red carpet events, parties, all-star tributes and filmmaker awards.

“The extraordinary films, remarkable talent and diversity of events at this year’s Festival is over-the-top exciting,” said Tonya Mantooth, Executive and Artistic Director of the San Diego International Film Festival. “With over 2,000 submissions from independent filmmakers in more than 65 countries, you can expect to see amazing cinematic storytelling and have opportunities to get up close and personal with some of the best filmmakers and content developers in the world.”

Over 100 of the films submitted will be carefully curated for screenings. This year’s festival will feature studio premiers as well as independent films from all genres. In addition, film tracks aimed at the San Diego Film Foundation’s five initiatives will be offered: social justice issues, the plight of returning military veterans, Native American life, women in film and environmental sustainability. Festival attendees are guaranteed to find films that inspire and entertain from the variety of films offered. Many screenings will also include panel discussions with the filmmakers and actors. Always a highlight of the festival, these Q&A sessions entertain and enlighten attendees through inspired conversation with the industry’s best.

Founded in 2001, the San Diego Film Festival has grown into one of the nation’s top cultural events through its countless opportunities to engage filmmakers, actors, directors and dealmakers from across the industry. Past premieres en route to awards season have included: “12 Years a Slave,” “The German” and “August: Osage County” (2013), “The Imitation Game,” “Whiplash,” “Wild,” “Mr. Turner,” “St. Vincent” (2014) and “Room,” “Youth” and “He Named Me Malala” (2015). Notable honorees of the festival have included Geena Davis (Thelma & Louise, Beetlejuice), Adrien Brody (The Pianist), John Boyega (Star Wars), Alan Arkin (Little Miss Sunshine, Argo), Beau Bridges (Descendants), Judd Apatow (Anchorman, 40 Year Old Virgin), Eli Roth (Inglourious Basterds) and Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting, Milk).

Festival passes are currently on sale for VIP experiences and for the general public. VIP Annual Membership Passes include VIP screenings and events throughout the year, as well as exclusive treatment during the festival, and are priced at $550 through August 22. Festival passes for five days during the festival are priced at $275 through August 22. One day passes are priced at $75. Individual tickets will go on sale on September 1st. For more information on passes, press accreditation, industry passes, or sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.sdiff.com.

DATE:

Wednesday, September 28 – Sunday, October 2, 2016

EVENT SCHEDULE:

Wednesday, September 28

Downtown | Opening Night Film at Balboa Theater

Official After Party at the Westgate Hotel Rooftop

Thursday, September 29

La Jolla | Night of the Starts Tribute at La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art

Downtown | Screenings at various venues and Indie Night Party at House of Blues

Friday, September 30

Downtown | Screenings and panels at various venues and Friday Night Party with a Purpose at Horton Plaza Park

La Jolla | ArcLight Cinemas screenings and Q&A discussions

Saturday, October 1

Downtown | Screenings and panels at various venues and Filmmakers Awards Show at The Westin Terrace

La Jolla | ArcLight Cinemas screenings and Q&A discussions

Sunday, October 2

Downtown | Screenings and panels at various venues

La Jolla | ArcLight Cinemas screenings and Q&A discussions, Culinary Cinema Event and Closing Night Film

FILM SCHEDULE:

A complete film schedule will be announced on August 22, 2016.

PASSES & TICKET COST:

VIP Annual Membership Pass | $550 through August 22; $595 through October 2

Festival Pass | $275 through August 22; $295 through October 2

Day Pass – Available Friday, Saturday or Sunday Only | $75

Ticket Bundle – 10 Tickets to any film or panel | $120, on sale September 1

Individual Tickets | $15, on sale September 1

About the San Diego International Film Festival

Founded in 2001, the San Diego International Film Festival, currently produced by the San Diego Film Foundation, is the region’s premier showcase for outstanding U.S. and international independent filmmaking. The five-day event is an entertaining, enlightening and educational gathering that embraces the region’s diverse cultural landscape, enhances the arts community and expands the economic vitality of San Diego. Learn more about the San Diego Film Festival at www.sdiff.com or on Facebook and Twitter.

About the San Diego Film Foundation

The San Diego Film Foundation is an educational 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that produces the annual San Diego International Film Festival. Its mission is to support the art of independent filmmaking through producing an annual film festival, developing stimulating film-related events throughout the year, supporting and nurturing student filmmaking programs in local schools, supporting the development of the local filmmaking industry, and enhancing the economic growth of San Diego.