“Basquing” in the Ambiance of Donostia

Reliving the days and nights of the San Sebastián International Film Festival


San Francisco -> Paris -> Bilbao -> San Sebastián is a trip that takes about 15 hours, if everything goes smoothly. Unfortunately, if the first leg is delayed for any reason (it was) just add another 6 hours in the airport waiting room and make that trek a 21-hour marathon!

San Sebastián, a.k.a. Donostia, is a mid-sized human-scale city on the Basque Coast of Spain; a “beach town” with two pristine semi-circular beaches (playas) divided by the Urumea River that snakes its way through town, dividing the old city from the new.

Cocktails, San Sebastian style

Drinking white wine and eating pintxos (peen-choz) for lunch seems to be an inalienable worker’s right. Evening time (8pm-onward) brings the red wine and tapas that are often balanced on the top of a wine glass. Admittedly, I am not a “foodie” but I ate and drank more than my fair share of these terrific little concoctions.

Overall, a pretty city, terrific food, and a well-organized festival!

Susan Weeks Coulter attended the 59th San Sebastián International Film Festival (Cinema in Motion and Films in Progress),

Continue reading “Basquing” in the Ambiance of Donostia

WEEK IN REVIEW: Saving Birds and Soaking it up in San Sebastian

We’re gearing up for the busiest season of the year here at GFI, with final decisions being made for the Global Lens 2012 lineup, grant applications under review and continuing DVD releases and Global Lens screenings.

In the midst of all this, it seems that each day brings more great news, important events and unexpected surprises. Here’s what we’ve been up to lately, and what’s in store for the near future:

GFI messenger bag

"Look for the yellow bag!" (Our calling card at festivals)

WHEN IN SPAIN: GFI Founder and Board Chair Susan Weeks Coulter traveled to the San Sebastián International Film Festival, where she met with filmmakers from around the world, saw a few unreleased and extremely impressive new projects, and made some new friends—most memorably after missing the last bus and getting stranded in the rain!

Gaston Kabore

Gaston Kabore

A VISIT TO REMEMBER: We’re very excited about Gaston Kabore’s visit during the Mill Valley Film Festival (Oct. 6-16)! The festival features a tribute to the Burkinabe filmmaker and GFI Film Board member, as well as a screening of Kabore’s Buud Yam

Continue reading WEEK IN REVIEW: Saving Birds and Soaking it up in San Sebastian

FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Durban, San Sebastian, Montreal and more!

There’s a lot to celebrate these days! Congratulations to the following GFI grant recipients and Global Lens films:



SKOONHEID was awarded Best South African Feature Film and Jury Special Mention Prize at the Durban International Film Festival, and will also be traveling to the Toronto International Film Festival in September! Read an interview with director Oliver Hermanus here.

San Sebastian Film Festival logoON THE PLANK will screen at the San Sebastian International Film Festival as part of the Zabaltegi Specials lineup (ON THE PLANK received the Cinema in Motion award at the festival last year). Watch a video of writer-director Leila Kilani speaking about the film here.

THE DEAD SEA will screen at the Montreal World Film Festival in the First Films Competition. This follows the film gaining CBFC clearance and having a successful world premiere at the FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Durban, San Sebastian, Montreal and more!