Forums and Education

SIFF Education expands and strengthens the community of film lovers and filmmakers in Seattle. Our programs include FutureWave (for youth and educators), Catalyst (for filmmakers), and Film4All (cinema education for everyone). Learn more about our programs here.

Our Festival Forums, listed below, set the stage for engaging discussions, extraordinary demonstrations, and hands-on workshops for a variety of ages and experience levels.


The Art of Writing a Short

60 minutes

Experienced screenwriters share their knowledge about taking the narrative foundation of your future short to the next level or amplifying your short into a feature.

Can Critics Save the Movies?

60 minutes

It can be easy to assume that everyone's a critic. Gone are the days in which two thumbs could determine the fate of any single movie. At the same time, there is a greater need than ever before for a signal in the noise that defines today's media landscape.

Catalyst Filmmaker Panel

60 minutes

All eight SIFF 2016 Catalyst directors divulge the experiences that brought their films to the big screen.

Catalyst Keynote with Ted Hope

June 11, 2016

60 minutes

Ted Hope, Head of Motion Picture Production at Amazon Studios, delivers the 2016 Catalyst Keynote, sharing his extensive experience in independent film production and presentation over his 25+ year career.

Catalyst Screenplay Competition Winner

120 minutes

In association with SIFF's Catalyst program, SIFF launched its first feature-length screenplay competition to help support and discover emerging storytellers. Grand Prize-winning script "The Trail" by Yvonne Paulin will be performed by local and visiting actors. The screenplay is a riveting dramatic thriller set in the snow-covered forests of Oregon state that follows a young mother as she fights for her life while unraveling the mystery of her missing daughter.

Developing Audience on Social Media

60 minutes

Meeting your audience where they exist on social media is always changing. Stay ahead of the game with this innovative workshop for filmmakers.

Getting it Done: Taking Documentaries from Seed to Completion

60 minutes

SIFF 2016 documentary filmmakers ring in on their challenges and successes as they took their films from a moment of creative inspiration to presenting it on the big screen. 

Light the Set Up: Cinematography Panel

90 minutes

Women in Film Seattle presents an illuminating panel of professional cinematographers discussing the psychology of creating images and manipulating resources to paint a picture on screen.

Masterclass with James Schamus

60 minutes

James Schamus shares his knowledge of the film industry as a producer, studio head, sales agent, and now, director.

Producing: Balancing Art and Commerce

60 minutes

A panel of feature film producers examine the challenge of creating artistic content while satisfying the commerce required in the film industry.