Hands with smartphones in cloud against white background with red bold word, Elevate. Beneath is the film festival logo with text, San Diego, California and dates, April 29, 30 and May 1.

Three years ago, almost to the day, we were celebrating IMFF 2019 in beautiful San Diego. Filmmakers from around the world and around the U.S. came to celebrate storytelling making movies with smartphone cameras. Jump through many hoops, seriously, and here we are again! The 11th edition #MFF2022SanDiego arrives with our first in-person film festival since that dreadful day in March when our state shut down in person events because of the pandemic. Are you ready now? 


Festive and exhilirating with many fun moments: That's part of the experience shared by everyone in attendance over the last ten years. 

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During the last three years, missing that experience has offered us insight into why we missed it so much. What was really the most important part of our unique event. Humans supporting and enjoying each other genuinely works only when the setting is just right. We've been providing the setting over the years and we missed it. Sharing stories and connecting with one another is priceless.

The theme this year is Elevate. We come together as a community to connect, share stories, learn from each other, support each others' projects and creations, inspire each other and bring the mobile filmmaking industry higher than ever before.

"Remember this: Mobile smartphone filmmaking and video is not better because the technology improved. It's better, and the technology is improving because of what you create. It's what you do with it. Elevate each other and what you create and we elevate together to create more and better stories through film using the camera that's always with you in your smartphone." Susy Botello, founder.

So, are you ready? We'll be releasing tickets very soon and you'll need to snag them up before someone else does. Because our event space has a limit. There's a saying in real estate, "Location, location, location!" We look forward to hosting you at the Marina Village Conference Center another year.

IMFF Venue Birds of Paradise shot and edited on iPhone web 02162022

Photo credit: Susy Botello, shot and edited on native iPhone camera.


Below is an overview of what to expect: Some things may be rearranged as we get closer.

Opening Day, Friday, April 29

We plan to begin with a meet and greet with some grub (food). A chance to meet and get to know each other.

Then we'll have some opening remarks and begin with the first feature film, Surveilled by Raya Films. The film will be followed with a brief Q&A with James Smith and Caroline Spence, who are flying into San Diego from the United Kingdom. 

We'll then take a break and mingle. 

Then we'll come back with another feature film, I Feel I Have Lost Something by Sigfrido Giammona from Italy. 

Have you ever heard of a Chill Gala? That's what's next! No need to dress up because we'll be enjoying a chill time, San Diego style! Some munch and chats a bit of fun and some little surprises. 

We then move unto one more feature film from James Demitri in Australia, Misplaced

Take a look at program details for the feature films and the schedule. 

That's a wrap for our first day! 


Second Day, Saturday, April 30

We open with a few words of inspiration and motivation. Elevate!

Then we present Oleg Loparev's feature film, Beyond. You'll recognize the Loparev family for their incredible stunt work during the Red Carpet Extravaganza in 2019. Let's just say, jaws dropped. 

Hungry yet? Time for a late lunch. Some filmmakers team up for lunch since there are some options, including great tacos!

Don't be late coming back for a special presentation as founder Susy Botello shares this year's new category The Rookie Award film presentation. Four short films will screen and they'll be followed with a Q&A moderated by Susy with the filmmakers who attend. 

We know it's never long enough so we'll have a break to mingle before we come back...

It's time for the Short Film Competition Screening! All the short films will be divided into a fun and entertaining jubilee of short 1-5 minute films with narratives, experimental films, a documentary, music and dance. Freaky Films will show last with a brief warning for those who may need to run and hide for a few minutes. 

We'll then serve up some snacks and mingle a bit before the feature film, One Punch by Darcy Yuille from Australia.

That's a wrap for day two! Another full day of exciting fun gone in a minute! 


Last Day, Sunday, May 1

Oh no, already? The last day? Let's Brun-Chill! It's a chill brunch because by now, you'll have made friends of your aquaintances. You'll probably realize today you'll miss some of the people you've met and may want to make sure you're following each other on social media, exchanging photos and tags and more. Hey don't forget to tag us too, we love to see what you captured!

After the fun brunch we'll watch the first western feature film shot with an iPhone! Travis Mills shot 12 Western Feature Films in 12 Months and you'll have a chance to watch, The Woman Who Robbed the Stagecoach. Based on a true story.

We'll take a quick break to come back to 2022 and get ready to learn some great insights on mobile filmmaking!

Ryan McDonald and Brandie McDonald are coming in from Ogden, Utah to present a Mobile Filmmaking Workshop for everyone. Ryan and Brandie made an award-winning feature film shot with an iPhone, Married and Loving It! The film was part of IMFF 2020. They are professional indie filmmakers and they're excited to share their skills, tips and tricks with you. 

Are you ready for some great fun? More fun? Yes! It's time for the Red Carpet Extravaganza! It's like a parade on the red carpet but no, it's like a show, but no it's just awesomeness! All the filmmakers will be escorted by cosplay members of the charity group, Star Wars Steampunk Universe! Let the paparazzi in you come out. Lot's of laughs, cheers, applause and just great fun!

IMFF Graphic Promo Web 

Photo credit: Shot with iPhone by Susy Botello during IMFF 2019, Red Carpet Extravaganza.


SWSU RC SB IMFF2019 logo web

Photo credit: Art Essence Photography. Star Wars Steampunk Universe with founder/director Susy Botello, IMFF 2019.

Time for a late lunch, have you had enough tacos, yet? There are other restaurants and options, no worries. 

Even though by now you've had many conversations with your new filmmaker friends, there's nothing like a Q&A Panel with all the filmmakers. Moderated by Susy Botello, who is also host of the SBP Podcast Mobile Filmmaking the Q&A will end with some questions from the audience. 

The sunlight is beginning to look amazing at the marina by the water with the boats...who could ask for a better backdrop for a photo session? All the filmmakers walk over with our photographer, Dean Curry of Dean Curry Photography to get some great shots by the marina. 

IMFF2019 filmmakers on Marina Sun logo smaller web

Photo credit: Art Essence Photography. IMFF 2019. Left to right: Kimberley Hart, Steve Peterson, Ross Perkins, Aleaxandra Guillossou, Mickey Harrison, Georgie Barnes, Seth Dacio, Joyce Axelrod, Dania Eliot, Nataliia Loparev, Sofiia Loparev and Oleg Loparev.


Then it's time...the time has arrived for the last part of the festival. That last hoorah as we enter the Awards Ceremony. This is the time where everyone who participated in one way or another receives appreciation for their contributions. And of course, all the filmmakers will receive their awards. 

Last words by festival founder and director, Susy Botello bring the festival to a close. The winners will be announced on social media, our website and press release over the following days. 

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Meet the Judges!

IMFF 2019 story.

Our Ambassadors.

SBP Podcast Mobile Filmmaking 

A Big Thank You to Our Sponsors:

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