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Filmmakers walk the red carpet on opening night of SLO Film Fest

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Posted at 10:33 PM, Apr 25, 2023

Tuesday night was the opening night at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival.

The SLO Film Fest is in full swing, and organizers are encouraging people to come out, enjoy the movies and get a chance to meet the filmmakers themselves.

Filmmakers from the Central Coast, and across the country walked the red carpet at the Fremont Theater on Tuesday night.

“We’re trying to put a message out there to go after your dreams, whatever they are, and don’t quit until you get them,” said Bill Bradley, who is the star of the movie “Epic Bill.”

From extreme racing to psychological thrillers, there is plenty on tap at the SLO Film Fest.

“Our film “Woodsman” is about a young married couple that live by the edge of a lake,” said Director Elliot Peters. “One of them cannot speak and they have to find a way to communicate and all the while, something mysterious and maybe supernatural starts to call to them from the other side of the lake.”

Local films are also in the line-up.

Robin Smith followed volunteers as they spent the summer preparing for the Cambria Scarecrow Festival.

“I’ve been to it many times and I’ve always wondered “who’s making these things”, how is this all coming together?”

Smith says she learned a lot about the work and dedication that goes into building scarecrows.

“They’re wonderful works of art. The work that goes into it is really amazing, and that’s what my film is all about,” she added.

A documentary about Texas Country is also on the line-up of different featured films.

“Out here-- believe it or not-- Red Dirt and Texas Country are a big thing, and that song is kind of legendary,” said “Oklahoma Breakdown” Director Christopher Fitzpatrick.

His film is about Mike Hosty; a one-man band who wrote a hit song that didn’t become a hit until somebody else covered it.

“He’s somebody who’s been a personal favorite of mine. He’s the greatest one-hit wonder you’ve never heard of because he wrote that song, but nobody’s heard of him. He’s the greatest performer live that I’ve probably ever seen in my life,” said Fitzpatrick.

Organizers say film festivals offer a rare opportunity to see the hard work that goes into making a movie.

“What we don’t always see are the filmmakers talking about films and the people who actually created them, who put all their savings into making the film,” said SLOIFF Publicist John Wildman.

The SLO Film Fest runs through Sunday with encore events the following week.

Some signature events made a comeback such as surf night.

Movie classic “ET” will also be screened at the drive-in.