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December 31

Watsonville Film Festival


Organization Mission

Film is a powerful catalyst for sparking conversations, expanding possibilities and transforming entire communities. Watsonville Film Festival’s mission is not simply to entertain, but to utilize the medium of film to inspire and engage its diverse community.


The Big Idea:
Making Watsonville a Regional Destination for Great Independent Cinema

Reopening the historic Fox Theater to host the Watsonville Film Festival in 2016 was a breakthrough for our community. Our focus for 2017 will be to establish a cultural destination in the heart of Monterey Bay and to make our interactive program ongoing.

This will be done through creating a permanent home in downtown Watsonville; acquiring our own equipment; screening local as well as international films rarely seen in our region; creating a platform to support unique films, including many produced by local youth that portray underrepresented communities; encouraging post-film conversations between filmmakers and the audience; and promoting entrepreneurial development of our region through the cinematic arts in Watsonville.

We also offer programming for schools, bring directors to the classrooms and actively engage youth to volunteer, attend the Festival and gain experience by covering our events through social media. Our hope is to inspire youth to see film as a creative avenue for artistic expression and as a tool for social justice.

The theater will also be used for events — from live music and Batucada parades, to regular film-centric gatherings that spark intercultural conversations among the disparate people of the region. Our ultimate goal is to share powerful storytelling that highlights our shared humanity and celebrates hope, equity and creativity.

I want to thank again everybody who help put the Watsonville Film Festival together. I had such an amazing time! The films I saw were very inspiring. Glad I had a chance to meet some local filmmakers. I really love the community of Watsonville. I love the unity and the awesome leaders it has. It’s always nice to visit my vecinos. I have so much respect and appreciation for my brothers and sisters putting in so much hard work to their community.

— Attendee Verenice Portela Farias