A five-day celebration of the best in cinematic arts, the 15th Annual Santa Fe Film Festival will run December 2nd- 6th, 2015 with a program of over 100 films, panels, juried awards, workshops and parties.

The initial idea for a Santa Fe Film Festival was first introduced in May, 1980 when Bill and Stella Pence, founders of Taos Talking Picture and Telluride Film festivals, started an event with a New Directors/New Film program, co-sponsored by the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. The Pences led a festival for four years, with such notable guests as Francis Ford Coppola, Charlton Heston, Sam Peckinpah, and Lillian Gish.

The Santa Fe Film Festival was inaugurated in 1999 as a non profit and began its first showing of films in the year 2000. It was created by Kurt Young, Larry Stouffer, John Armijo, David Koh and film critic Jon Bowman who also acted as the Executive Director and guiding light of the festival for ten years.

Festival awards varied over the years. Initial categories included: Best Short, Best Documentary, Best Feature, Best Native American, and Best Latino Film. By 2006 the awards became the Milagro Award (best American independent film), the Independent Spirit Award, and the Audience Award, Honorable Mention in the Creative Spirit Award and Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Film Festival has now continued for 15 consecutive years, and will be held this coming December 2nd- 6th, 2015. The special setting of the festival in the unique and historic City of Santa Fe allows filmmakers, journalists, industry leaders and audiences from around the world to gather together in celebration of film.

The festival’s annual program includes curated selections of over 40 film programs including narrative and documentary features, shorts of all types, tributes to world-renowned film artists and industry professionals as well as a spotlight on local filmmakers. Embracing the full spectrum of cinematic arts, the Santa Fe Film Festival extends beyond screenings in theaters to panels, workshops, art exhibitions and fabulous parties. Come experience the beauty of Santa Fe and join us for our upcoming celebration of cinematic arts.


The Santa Fe Film Festival celebrates all facets of cinematic arts – here in New Mexico, regionally and globally.

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Photo Galleries

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The Santa Fe Film Festival would like to thank all those who have given us their time and talent over the years, including designers, writers, coordinators, venue staffers and interns. As our Festival continues to grow and prosper,…

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2014 Board Members

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