The Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara.
The Arlington Theatre, seen during the 2019 Santa Barbara International Film Festival, will showcase the 37th festival in March. (Steve Kennedy photo)

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival has announced the lineup for its 37th festival, which will run March 2-12 and feature tributes with some Academy Award contenders, 48 world premieres and 95 U.S. premieres, industry panels and more.

“After two years of incertitude, it feels good to know we can continue to count on film and the festival to give us a sense of comfort and continuity,” SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling said as the lineup was announced. “We’re extremely proud of the offerings at the 37th fest.”

The film festival will open at 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 2 with the opening night film, “The Phantom of the Open,” and end with the closing night film, “Dionne Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over,” at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 12, both in The Arlington Theatre.

Throughout the festival, more than a dozen actors, directors and others involved in the filmmaking process will be honored in the SBIFF’s tributes, which will all take place at The Arlington Theatre.

At 8 p.m. Thursday, March 3, the Outstanding Directors of the Year Award will take place, with honorees to be announced. Previous recipients include Chloé Zhao, David Fincher, Lee Isaac Chung, Thomas Vinterberg in 2021 and “Parasite” director Bong Joon Ho in 2020.

The following evening, at 8 p.m. Friday, March 4, Kristen Stewart will be honored with the American Riviera Award, and the Virtuosos Awards will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 5.

Virtuosos Award recipients include Caitriona Balfe, Ariana DeBose, Jamie Dornan, Alana Haim, Emilia Jones, Troy Kotsur, Simon Rex and Saniyya Sidney.

The Variety Artisans Award, which honors “below-the-line professionals who are essential to the filmmaking process,” will take place at 8 p.m. Monday, March 7, with recipients to be announced.

Recipients for the Montecito Award, which will occur at 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 8, also are yet to be announced.

Will Smith and Aunjanue Ellis will be receiving the Outstanding Performers of the Year Award, with the tribute taking place at 8 p.m. Sunday, March 6, and Benedict Cumberbatch will be honored with the Cinema Vanguard Award on Wednesday, March 9.

Finally, the Maltin Modern Master Award will honor Javier Bardem and Nicole Kidman on Thursday, March 10.

Tributes and panels taking place throughout the duration of the festival also will be streamed live.

Panels taking place at this year’s festival include the Writers Panel, the Producers Panel, the Women’s Panel and the free Animation Panel.

“SBIFF has become renowned for creating smart, insightful panels that feature a who’s who in the world of filmmaking, including many Oscar contenders,” festival organizers said in a news release.

About 120 feature films and 60 short films representing 54 countries will be screened, with some premiering for the first time in the United States or in the world. 

Tickets and passes for events and film screenings can be purchased online on SBIFF’s website, but free screenings also will be offered through support from the John C. Mithun Foundation.

Admission for free daily screenings will be on a first-come, first-served basis following passholder admission. Some of the free film screenings include “The Power of the Dog,” followed by a Q&A with director Jane Campion; “Licorice Pizza,” followed by a Q&A with director Paul Thomas Anderson; “Belfast,” followed by a Q&A with director Kenneth Branagh; “Selena,” followed by a Q&A with director Gregory Nava and actor Edward James Olmos; “El Norte,” with another Q&A with Nava; “The Good Boss”; “House of Darkness”; short films from the 10-10-10 student program; and a 10th anniversary screening of “Silver Linings Playbook,” with a Q&A with director David Russell.

The full lineup of films and events and information on buying tickets can be found on the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s website.

Noozhawk staff writer Serena Guentz can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Serena Guentz, Noozhawk Staff Writer

Noozhawk staff writer Serena Guentz can be reached at