Now in its eighth year, the St. Augustine Film Festival has grown to showcase 40 movies on six screens over more than four days.
“The first year, you could fire a cannon and not hit anybody,” says festival CEO Gregory von Hausch. “It was called the Flagler College Film Festival, so everybody thought we were just doing student films.”
Though there is a small selection of student movies, the event now focuses on indie films that von Hausch selects from festivals like Cannes and Tribeca and from filmmaker submissions—of which he says he receives nearly 5,000.
“We’re going to open with one set in the Arctic. We’ll have Spanish films, one from Afghanistan, Poland, Serbia, Russia, Argentina… we’ll give guests quite a world tour of cinema,” he says. “There’s no theme, we just try to find the best and most eclectic films we can.”
The festival takes place January 18-21, with movies playing all day at Flagler College, the Corazon Cinema & Cafe and the Lightner Museum. Parties are held each night where directors, writers, actors and film buffs discuss the day’s screenings.