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La Costa Film Festival Kicks Off

Tribute To Actor Ed Harris On Friday

KPBS film critic Beth Accomando previews the La Costa Film Festival.


The La Costa Film Festival drew 3,500 attendees in for its debut last year and it is already expanding in terms of both attendance and number of films showcased.

The La Costa Film Festival is serving notice that it has something different to offer from the plethora of festivals unspooling in the next few weeks.

Festival programming director Kym Wright said: "Our festival really reflects our community. We’re a very athletic community and so we actually have a sport focus. We have eight sport feature films as well as seven sport shorts. We have 'Brothers in Exile,' who struggled to get out of Cuba, El Duque, we have a lot of great stories that a lot of people don’t know about perhaps, they have an opportunity to come and see these films. We do have a jury who watches all the films and we award the best sport short and sport feature award."

Wright, who has a background in sales, smiled as she explained, "We’re only in our second year, we’re like little babies. The co-founders Michael and Ruby Callahan, are members at the Omni La Costa Resort and Spa. They were having lunch and just thought about the bygone years of La Costa when all the stars used to come down and they thought wouldn’t it be great to bring Hollywood back to seaside Carlsbad. But it’s for our second year we have 43 films, that includes all our shorts from 13 countries. So we are very excited."

The festival opens with a fundraising wine reception and special screening of "American Wine Story" Wednesday night before officially opening Thursday night with the romantic comedy "Frank Vs. God." The film will screen under the stars at the Omni La Costa Resort and Spa. Other films will screen at the La Costa Cinepolis and at the Carlsbad Dove Library.

Photo caption: One of the outdoor screenings from the inaugural La Cost Film Festival last y...

Photo credit: La Costa Film Festival

One of the outdoor screenings from the inaugural La Cost Film Festival last year.

There are also films by and about San Diegans.

"We do have a high school category and all of the North County schools are welcome to have their students give us films," Wright stated. "We have a winner, the winner is from Canyon Crest. We also do have one film that highlights a San Diego gentleman, 'Don’t Quit: The Joe Roth Story.' The filmmakers are from Northern California but it’s about a Granite Hills boy who goes to Grossmont, then goes to Cal Berkeley."

On Friday the festival will screen "Radio" and pay tribute to actor Ed Harris. On Saturday, awards will be handed out at the Gala and "Teacher of the Year" will screen. Sunday also has a full day of films.

MORE: La Costa Film Festival 2014 Schedule

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