Tuesday, 19 February 2013

In its second year, the San Diego Surf Film Festival (SDSFF) has already become one of the largest and most celebrated festivals of its kind around the globe. Living up to its instant success and international reputation, the SDSFF promises to give 2013 attendees access to stellar international surf cinema and full immersion into the iconic surf culture.

SDSFF 2013, scheduled for May 8-12, will highlight over 35 international films, a surf art gallery, amazing live music, beach clean- ups, shaping demos and surf expression sessions.  Once again, the festival will be held at Bird's Surf Shed in San Diego, a world famous restored quonset hut filled with an impressive collection of historically significant surfboards and artifacts.

Due to the overwhelming response of SDSFF's inaugural year, festival organizers have added an extra day for 2013. SDSFF 2013 will kick off with an exclusive VIP party at Surfindian art gallery and surf shop in Pacific Beach. The VIP party, which will only be open to Nautilus Pass holders, artists, filmmakers, and press, will include food by Daphne's California Greek, refreshments, live music, and a live art demonstration by Matt Beard, Skye Walker and Joe Hodnicki.  Surfindian will display their art in addition to photography by Gage Hingeley throughout the month of June.

Opening night of SDSFF 2013 (Thursday, May 9) will include two features and one short film, live music, free food by Daphne's and refreshments. A total of 12 feature films and 23 short films will be shown during the entire festival.  Besides incredible films, SDSFF 2013 attendees will be able to enjoy and participate in live art demos, kids art sessions with Matt Beard, after parties, a beach clean-up and surf expression sessions. SDSFF 2013 will also have a greater focus on the San Diego surfboard shapers who have had significant impact on the global surfing timeline. These legendary shapers will offer personal shaping demonstrations during the entire weekend. Their boards will be on display and up for auction with proceeds being donated to Share the Stoke Foundation. The SDSFF, which sold out all three days and attracted 2,500 people in 2012, is expected to sell out once again this year.

In an effort to provide a stronger international flair to the festival, SDSFF organizers are reaching out more to filmmakers around the globe to submit their films. Last year, the SDSFF received nearly 60 film submissions (both features and shorts) from around the world.

"We welcome surf enthusiasts and filmmakers from around the world to come celebrate the art of surf cinema in our beautiful hometown of San Diego," said Pierce Kavanagh, SDSFF cofounder and creative director. "We are excited to bring in more filmmakers from around the globe and to give festival goers a virtual passport to all these incredible surf breaks and cultures that they may have never been exposed to before."

The main mission of the annual San Diego Surf Film Festival is to bring the entire global surfing community together on a grassroots level.

"SDSFF and other similar festivals are vital to filmmakers because it brings audiences to films that wouldn't have the means to see or hear them otherwise," said English filmmaker Chris McClean, whose short surf film Fathoms Left to Fall snagged an honorable mention during SDSFF 2012. "The festival brings together film lovers and filmmakers and concentrates attention on stories and experiences, which are sometimes not easily heard amidst the hustle and bustle of the other platforms like the internet. I really appreciate the support we've received from the SDSFF; it gives independent filmmakers the opportunity to reach audiences and the support. The accolades from your peers is a fantastic reward for those hours stood on reefs and beaches in the rain and snow shivering behind the lens."

SDSFF 2013 has already received an overwhelming amount of surf films for this year's festival. The deadline for film submissions is March 15. This year's SDSFF films will be announced March 25. SDSFF 2013 filmmaker awards will include Best Feature, Best Cinematography, Most Inspirational, Emerging Filmmaker, Best Short, and Best San Diego Filmmaker.

"The San Diego Surf Film Festival encompasses all aspects of the surf culture and community," Kavanagh said. "Since Bruce Brown sent shockwaves throughout the world with Endless Summer the surf film has become a staple in our lives. Surfing and surf cinema alike have been developed by individuals with a deep passion for trying to capture and preserve the very special feeling of just being a surfer. And they will continue to do so long after everyone has gone home."

"What the SDSFF has done is added all the elements to the growing surf culture, including art and music. This is a true community and family celebration," he added. "With its incredible first-year success, the SDSFF immediately established itself as a unique and resourceful organization engaged in establishing significant events. We are stoked about brining another successful and meaningful festival to the community at large."

SDSFF is pleased to announce the return of Daphne's California Greek, which promises to feed each and every festival goer (food is included with each ticket).  Limited tickets are available for each screening. All-access Nautilus passes for the entire five-day festival are also limited and can be purchased at (Nautilus passes area available for $80 until Feb. 28. After that, they will be $100). General admission tickets will go on sale April 8. The SDSFF 2013 schedule will also be available on April 8.

For more information on the San Diego Surf Film Festival, visit


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