The San Diego Film Festival Opened Last Night To A Sold Out Festival!

October 15, 2021

By: Bryan Seltzer
International Press Association, IPANews

San Diego, CA: The Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park was the location for last nights kick off and opening night of the 20th Anniversary Celebration of the San Diego International Film Festival. The Pre-Reception and check in was held outdoors next to the beautiful Lily Pond. The Sold Out event was enhanced by the smiling faces greeting one and enjoying the natural landscape of the unique Balboa Park. 



Badges were picked up at the check in entrance and the attendees were then treated to delicious food bits provided by Miss Shelly’s Catering and the Topside Terrace, oh so tasty!! (I had a couple of each to make sure. LOL)

Miss Shelly
Topside Terrace


The Red Carpet was set up along the sidewalk and utilized by most everyone to receive a great memory of the evening captured in a photograph. Old friends were rejoicing at seeing each other in this natural setting as well as meeting new friends and attendees to this years special Opening Night for the Festival.

The opening night film, C’mon C’mon, was viewed inside the Museum of Photographic Arts where the Post-Reception was also held in the lobby. The history of Photography is amazing and this location to view the opening night film fit perfectly.


Dennis Doucette

Once everyone was seated inside the theater, Tonya Mantooth, CEO and Artistic Director, delivered a great welcome and greeting to all as well as a special thank you to the Patrons, VIP guests, Dennis Doucette and Scott Mantz, a Festival Host.


Scott Mantz





Tonya set the stage for this years International Film Festival which shows films every day until the closing event on the USS Middway for the final Film Screening and Reception in Downtown San Diego. (I think this event is also sold out but go online to or call 619-818-2221 with any questions.)

I totally enjoyed catching up with so many that I had not seen since 2019. I also was not the only one celebrating the great come back to actually viewing these films in person, it was fabulous!

Although the Pre-Reception lasted only 1 1/2 hours, somehow I shot about 300 photos. With perfect San Diego weather all day and into the evening, and a bright moon lit night afterwards to look up and see after leaving the Post-Reception in the totally clear skies, it could not have been a better night.

Well done to all those who helped this evening to be a great success. I’m looking forward to viewing many fantastic films and seeing more friends and making new ones! San Diego International Film Festival is the Best!!