San Diego International Film Festival to return in October

The San Diego International Film Festival is thrilled to screen films for the 21st Annual Festival (October 19-23, 2022) at partner organization AMC 14 @ Westfield UTC. This year includes the return of the opening night film premiere and reception, the All-Star Night Tribute, Culinary Cinema, as well as other in-person evenings, panels and networking events. . Count on the Festival to start the conversation with compelling films and Q&As on social impact, including: refugees, environmental sustainability, social inequality, human trafficking, LGBTQAI+ rights and more affecting our world and our communities. All in-person screenings from Friday, October 21 through Sunday, October 23 will take place at the beautiful AMC 14 @ Westfield UTC which opened this year in the space formerly occupied by Arclight.

Each year, the San Diego International Film Festival receives nominations from more than 3,000 independent filmmakers from approximately 82 countries. The San Diego International Film Festival is strategically positioned in October to showcase potential nominees just ahead of industry nominations and awards. In 2021, the SD Intl Film Festival was proud to premiere: Belfast, Power of the Dog, Lost Daughter, The Worst Person in the World and Flee which garnered 28 Oscar nominations and 16 Golden Globe nominations.

Tonya Mantooth, CEO and Artistic Director of the Festival, shared “The film industry is in a period of post-Covid resurgence, and festivals and cinemas are playing a central role in recalibrating the industry. We are delighted that AMC 14 @ Westfield UTC has been able to create a space to galvanize our community to share a cinematic experience – and that we have the opportunity to bring so many exciting new films to our festival audience.”

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with the beloved San Diego International Film Festival and welcome another year of incredible cinematic opportunities, showcasing some of the most gripping films, stories and adventures we will see this year. “Westfield said. Deputy General Manager of UTC, John Marty. “As a staple of our San Diego community, Westfield UTC remains committed to putting unparalleled and memorable customer experiences at the forefront of our efforts, and is honored to have once again been selected to host such an iconic event. .”

Calendar of festivals 2022:


Opening Night Film Premiere and Reception + Online Virtual Screenings

The Museum of Photographic Arts, Balboa Park

Time: 5:30 p.m. (pre-reception), 7:00 p.m. (screening)

The 21st San Diego International Film Festival kicks off with moviegoers, filmmakers, patrons, elected officials, executives and professionals gathering to celebrate cinema at the Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park. Guests will enjoy a pre-screening cocktail followed by a film premiere in studio and a Q&A with the filmmaker.


Tribute to Starry Night + Online Virtual Screenings

Conrad Prebys Center for the Performing Arts, La Jolla

Time: 5:30 p.m. Red carpet and pre-reception; 7:00 p.m. Presentations

The San Diego International Film Festival honors some of the motion picture industry’s most accomplished actors, directors, and filmmakers. Each year we are proud to present the Gregory Peck Award for Excellence in Film with the support of the Peck family. Rising stars, authors and visionaries are also recognized and celebrated.


In-Person Screenings + Online Virtual Screenings

AMC @ Westfield UTC

Time: 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. daily

Moviegoers will enjoy film screenings of studio premieres and independent feature films, documentaries, shorts and selected films from the Women’s Film Series. Between film screenings, guests can visit the Festival Lounge for snacks, cocktails, and conversation with fellow moviegoers. Can’t do the screenings in person? With this 5-day pass, you can watch feature films, documentaries and short films from the comfort of your own home!


Culinary cinema

Time: 11:00 a.m.

Culinary cinema is a recipe for Sunday fun and a dream come true for foodies! Ingredients begin with a cooking-themed movie. Afterwards, everyone adjourns to enjoy dishes inspired by renowned San Diego chefs. Add some fine wine and good conversation and you have the perfect Sunday afternoon!


The Festival’s signature events (opening night film and pre-reception, Night of the Stars celebrity tribute, culinary cinema) are usually sold out. The best way to guarantee reservations to these events is to purchase a pass by Labor Day (September 5).

VIP Pass package includes: Opening Night Film and Pre-Reception, Night of Stars Celebrity Tribute plus Filmmaker Awards, Culinary Cinema and all other events, panels, film screenings in studio and independent.

The weekend package includes Friday, Saturday and Sunday events: Filmmaker Awards and Culinary Cinema, as well as panels, studio and independent film screenings.

Virtual Screening Pass Can’t do the screenings in person? With this 5-day pass, you can watch feature films, documentaries and short films from the comfort of your own home!

Access to 5 days of on-demand virtual screenings

Start: Wednesday, October 19 at 00:00

End: Sunday, October 23 at 11:59 p.m.

Individual tickets for events and screenings of the signature events will go on sale after Labor Day subject to availability.®id=80&

About Westfield UTC

A unique outdoor retail and lifestyle destination in San Diego, Westfield UTC combines beautifully landscaped plazas and gardens; trendy fashion boutiques; award-winning chef-led restaurants with open-air terraces; multi-faceted wellness amenities; plus special moments of surprise and delight inspired by the best of La Jolla. In addition to being home to more innovative and first-to-market brands than other retail destinations in San Diego, Westfield UTC offers a strong and ever-growing portfolio of leading global brands, luxury concepts, favorites premises and experiential escapes, the center diverse tenants include Louis Vuitton, Alo, Reformation, Gorjana, Le Labo, CHANEL Fragrance & Beauty, Lucid Motors, Allbirds, Hermes, Aritzia, Bonobos, Restoration Hardware, TravisMathew, Warby Parker, Peloton, AMC Theaters, and more. Westfield UTC also boasts an impressive range of culinary outposts including Haidilao Hot Pot, Javier’s, Din Tai Fung, The Winery Restaurant & Bar, True Food Kitchen and the highly anticipated addition of Lady M Cake Boutique. Creating an enhanced and unique setting for wellness with the presence of brands such as One Medical and SoulCycle, the center invites customers to take advantage of some of the best health offerings San Diego has to offer. The on-site experience is complemented by CBRE, Inc.’s state-of-the-art office space, a 23-story high-end residential tower featuring 300 modern homes, as well as a new regional transit hub and San Francisco light rail station. Diego which connects Westfield UTC with ease to the city centre.

About AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc.

AMC is the largest motion picture exhibition company in the United States, the largest in Europe, and the largest in the world with approximately 950 theaters and 10,500 screens worldwide. AMC has driven innovation in the exhibition industry by: deploying its Signature power reclining seats; provide enhanced food and beverage choices; generate greater customer engagement through its loyalty and subscription programs, website and mobile applications; offering premium large-format experiences and streaming a wide variety of content, including the latest Hollywood releases and independent programming. For more information, visit

About the San Diego International Film Festival:

The San Diego International Film Festival is the region’s premier film event and one of the main stops on the independent festival circuit. The Festival offers a totally unique cinematic experience; including world premieres, never-before-seen studio releases and the best of independent cinema. We believe that cinema is a catalyst for positive change. The festival lineup is varied – but everyone has a genre they care about – including us. Passionate about topics of social impact, we have focused our attention on curated independent films that explore issues affecting our world including homelessness, prejudice, pollution of the world’s rivers, extinction of animals and the environment, sustainability, sex trafficking, military stories and Sequel.

About the San Diego Film Foundation:


Our mission is to use the film experience to explore issues of global impact, to create dialogue, and ultimately to develop empathy and understanding in an increasingly diverse and complex world. We’re leveraging these important conversations through our partnership with the San Diego County Office of Education and the San Diego Unified School District to use cinematic storytelling to help educate future leaders about key issues affecting our communities and the world. Our newest partnership is with UC San Diego Extension to create a social impact film channel on the UCTV platform that will support the United Nations’ “17 Sustainable Development Goals to Transform Our World.” The festival will curate films from around the world to help deepen conversations and understanding of these UN goals and hopefully inspire action.

A 501c.3. The San Diego Film Foundation brings the best independent film stories from around the world to San Diego each year. We present films that make a difference through a variety of events and programs. We’ve created a robust infrastructure to continue sharing movies and chats securely, including:

  • MySDFilmFest Membership Program (January – December 2022)
  • The San Diego International Film Festival Channel
  • The San Diego International ShortsFest (begins May 20-22, 2022)
  • FOCUS on Impact Film Tour for high school students (spring and fall 2022)
  • 2022 San Diego International Film Festival (October 19-23, 2022)

Photo credit: Jason deAlba

About Debra D. Johnson

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