// About

2011 Opening Night Party Bently BikeSPUR outdoor screeningFestival audience


The San Francisco Green Film Festival (SFGFF) is the Bay Area’s leading festival for films and discussions about people and the planet.

Launched in 2011, SFGFF presents an annual film festival each Spring, along with year-round community screenings and events in the San Francisco Bay Area. Attendees discover new films from around the globe and hear stories from people facing the world’s most urgent environmental issues and creating the most innovative solutions.

SFGFF brings critical and contemporary environmental issues to local audiences and, in the process, highlights the vital work of our many partners, including local businesses, schools, and non-profit organizations. Since 2011, we’ve partnered with over 140 community organizations, presented over 214 programs with 439 films, and reached audiences of over 125,000.


The San Francisco Green Film Festival’s mission is to educate and connect communities through forward-thinking programs of environmental films, dialogue, and action opportunities.


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  • Each festival includes local premiere screenings of carefully-picked new international films that explore sustainability and environmental action.
  • Inspiring and informative discussions with international filmmakers and leaders in the fields of technology, science, business, conservation, and the arts. Each film includes a Q&A with leading experts and change makers and a call to action.
  • Numerous social events and networking opportunities.
  • Free screenings for educators and students.


  • San Francisco Premiere of The Island President with Jon Shenk, Bonni Cohen and Richard Berge
  • Live Q&A with iconic writer and environmentalist Margaret Atwood following the screening of Ron Mann’s In The Wake of the Flood
  • West Coast premiere of Werner Herzog’s new feature documentary Happy People: A Year in the Taiga
  • SF Premiere of Bidder 70 with special guest Tim DeChristopher
  • Q&A with author Jonathan Franzen following the West Coast Premiere of Roger Kass’ Emptying the Skies
  • Outdoor screening with solar-powered projector of Tiny – A Story About Living Small in Annie Alley in downtown SF
  • West Coast Premiere of Shored Up and Q&A with director Ben Kalina. The film went on to win the Hilton LightStay Sustainability Award at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.
  • SF Premiere of Rebels With A Cause with Huey Johnson, Nancy Kelly, and Kenji Yamamoto
  • Special screening of HOME and Q&A with aerial photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand
  • SF Premiere of Anthony Baxter’s You’ve Been Trumped in a special double bill with Bill Forsyth’s 1983 classic Local Hero
  • 40th Anniversary screening of Chinatown, as part of a series of films and discussions on the California drought
  • Conversations and panels exploring film, new technology and ideas, including transmedia, virtual reality, gamification, storytelling for change, Google Earth, crowdfunding.
  • Awardees include Fredrik Gertten for BANANAS!*, Thomas Riedelsheimer for Breathing Earth and Garden in the Sea, and Markus Imhoof for More Than Honey
  • Work-in-progress screenings give local filmmakers the opportunity to share their work and gain valuable audience feedback, including Judy Irving’s Pelican Dreams and Sophie Constantinou’s Green Streets
  • Festival Awards 3-D printed in the cinema lobby using green, non-toxic, recyclable and compostable materials in a zero waste process.
  • In 2012, SFGFF launched the “Lights! Camera! Take Action!” initiative, providing resources for festival attendees to get involved with local partners and their vital work

  • Certificate of Honor

    Certificate of Honor presented at Opening Night of the 1st Festival, March 3, 2011.


    In addition to the annual film festival, SFGFF presents year-round screenings and discussions – many for free to the general public. We present regular monthly screenings with GreenStacks at the San Francisco Public Library Main Branch, and other recent co-presented events include the David Brower Center, SPUR, and Nightlife at the California Academy of Sciences.

    In addition, we take films into local schools and businesses. Contact us to find out how we can engage your students or employees in this program.


    SFGFF is fiscally sponsored by Green Planet Films, a 501(c)3 non-profit distributor of nature and environmental films from around the globe. As fiscal sponsor, Green Planet Films provides the non-profit status and back office support for SFGFF operations.

    SFGFF is a member of the Green Film Network, an association of the leading film festivals worldwide that focus on environmental issues. The network’s objective is to coordinate the events of the associated festivals, promote and distribute films worldwide, and encourage initiatives and projects that increase people’s understanding of the environment.

    SFGFF’s office is based in the Ninth Street Independent Film Center, a creative community of the city’s leading film & media organizations.