1. Miami International Film Festival
Attracting more than 65,000 people during its 11-day run last March, this 26th annual festival is produced by Miami-Dade College and screened more than 250 features, shorts, and documentaries. The 2010 festival was scheduled for March 5 to 14.
2. Miami and Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
Presented by HBO, this 10-day international festival took place April 25 to May 3 and showcased 100 films (nearly 30 fewer than in 2008, due to a drop in submissions) at seven venues in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Organizers scrapped the Centerpiece Gala due to budget cuts, but still attracted more than 11,000 people to the festival. The 12th annual event is April 23 to May 2.
3. Sunshine State Award Ceremony
The South Florida chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists produces this award ceremony to recognize journalists across the state in 80 categories. The May 2009 ceremony attracted 25 percent more guests than in 2008, due to lower ticket prices and a move to the Art and Cultural Center of Hollywood. The 2010 event date had not been announced at press time.
4. American Black Film Festival
Recognized as the leading film festival for African-American and urban content, this lineup primarily screens world premieres. HBO and Nickelodeon sponsor filmmaking competitions. The 2010 festival is scheduled for June 23 to 26.
5. Brazilian Film Festival of Miami
The 2009 edition of this festival expanded with screenings in Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood. Part of the Inffinito Festival Circuit, which promotes film events worldwide, the fest screened 41 films made in Brazil to an audience of more than 18,000 people. The 2010 festival is set for August 13 to 21.
6. Miami Short Film Festival
Presented by the University of Miami School of Communication, in 2009 this 10-day event showed more than 90 films from 27 countries, culled from a record 600 entries. The screenings took place November 13 to 22 and attracted 5,000 attendees, about 10 percent more than in 2008. The festival’s ninth outing is scheduled for November 13 to 20.