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By Film Threat Staff | December 21, 1998

The first San Francsico Independent Film Festival, AKA the SF IndieFest, debuts January 7-10, 1999 at the Roxie Cinema and Victoria Theatre with 17 new independent feature films (full program at
“San Francisco is a great movie town,” says festival founder and director Jeff Ross. “We have great film festivals and art houses bringing in movies from all over the world. But there really is no place in town that showcases the recent output of American independent films. The SF IndieFest has brought together a sampling of some of these unique and original films culled from a broad spectrum of movie making. Each of these films was made with a passion that comes from the do-it-yourself attitude inherent to independent filmmaking.”
The SF IndieFest will be the place in town to catch young, talented filmmakers starting out in their career. The IndieFest hopes to be a filmmaker friendly festival as well as an audience friendly festival. Unlike most film festivals, they do not charge an entry fee, for they feel that most of these filmmakers have already had to beg, borrow andsteal to get their film in the can. To emphasize the IndieFest’s focus on audience oriented programming, the IndieFest will present only one award to one film, the festival’s Audience Award, chosen by members of the movie going audience instead of members of the movie making industry. The festival’s programming will continue to focus on presenting new and exciting films that San Francisco audiences would not have an opportunity to see anywhere else in the Bay Area.
Festival highlights include: 1999, the fest’s excellent Opening Night Film, about an eclectic group of friends ringing in the new millenium; STARVING ARTISTS, a low budget comedy recently the rave at Honolulu International Film Festival; HUNDRED PERCENT, a funky comedy-drama with a strong cast of well known Asian American acotrs searching for their personal indentity; BONGWATER, a romantic comedy of opposites attract starring Luke Wilson (“Home Fries”); NINTH STREET, a beautifully made black and white film starring Martin Sheen and Isaac hayes about changing times in a predominently African American army town; and PARIAH, our powerful Closing Night Film, based on two true incidents of hate crimes that were committed in the Bay Area, and which challenges viewers to tackle the difficult subject of hate motivated violence.
The 1999 San Francisco IndieFest presents a collection of films ranging from the ultra-low-budget-and-made-with-a-credit-card-and-stubborn-spirit type to films with high production values and renowned actors. Unique, feisty and truly independent, SF IndieFest seeks to bring the best of the indie crop to San Francisco in the New Year.

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