City Shorts

Runs May 14-21

Get your tickets by clicking right here!


The students, faculty and staff of the Cinema Department at City College of San Francisco and the Roxie Theater, proudly announce the 20th Annual City Shorts Student Film Festival, happening virtually for the first time ever! In its 20th year, City Shorts has launched hundreds of artist’s careers!
City Shorts stands out as one of most unique film festivals in the Bay Area as one of the most prolific cinema production schools in San Francisco. The festival has screened early work by award-winning filmmakers such as Jim Granato, Joe Talbot (director, THE LAST BLACK MAN IN SAN FRANCISCO), Tina Takemoto (PhD, Experimental film and comedy improv), David Weisman (Emmy-winning documentary maker), Sam Berliner (Seattle Film Fest), Amy Hicks, and Muayad Alayan (Palestinian films), to name just a few of our successful students working professionally in the film industry!

After a year hiatus, due to the pandemic, during budget and faculty cuts, the students of City College San Francisco present the best films from the Cinema Department from 2019 to today.

The festival features experimental, short-action, documentary, and a few hybrid films that blend the cinematic form.

Some standouts include, CALL ME WHEN YOU GET HOME, directed by, Mark Kuroda. The film’s timing on Asian American hate crimes is matched by the professional skill in which the story is told. Excellent quality for a community college, you will think. TURFIN by Latiece Brown goes behind the scenes in this Oakland-born dance-form. CERCAS reveals the value of food, intimately revealing the life of a farmworker. DEAD BEET, by Diana Hartman, is a funny stop motion, capturing everyone’s pandemic feelings, and offering up a few laughs to remind us that ‘this too will end’. J. Andrew’s DREAM UPON WAKING, might be the best pandemic short you’ve seen this year. Bold colors, excellent storytelling and editing expand the film’s dreamy world. Danielle Karstetter’s documentary NEON SPARKS, takes us behind the scenes with one of America’s best neon sign creators while exploring these bright lights that are having an ‘all things vintage’ comeback. Joann Perez’s INVASION will remind you of Orson Welles’ adept storytelling skill, and she creates this embodiment in less than 4-minutes. I AM EVA, by Nata Zverovich demonstrates the joy of gender identity freedom for immigrants to the USA.

A person applies blacklight-responsive make-up while sitting at a mirror.


Rounding out the film festival is a bit of dark comedy with TIPO DI CAMBIO by Anabel Ontiveros, where you will wonder is this fact, or fiction? In our current world, where economic desperation has only grown, you will still be wondering about this dilemma a few days after viewing this short film. Carl Rennie’s short GUEST ARTIST reveals a surprise. TEETH by Joey Nelson explores the dental x-ray, your next visit to the dentist will be easier after viewing. THE CODE by Liz Lopez takes us to a new planet, or a new world, post-covid.


A person with a masked and bandaged face looks into a jar filled with an amber-colored substance.


Molly Cargas’ LIQUID OPTICS, shot on celluloid film, explores the beauty and strangeness of light and life near the ocean. PERSPECTIVE by Eduardo Maia, is a direct shout-out to the power of media, via experimental film. FLOWER POWER, by Erik Grow is another gem, shot on celluloid film, combined with found footage from Gunsmoke television show into a twist that is a direct homage to CCSF’s long-prosperous Cinema Production program. We’ve been editing Gunsmoke for more than 30 years at the school to teach the rules of editing.

You are invited to experience the spirit of Bay Area independent filmmaking while raising funds for two vital institutions in San Francisco. The City College of San Francisco’s Cinema Department nurtures talented filmmakers from the ground up, with a curriculum that covers everything from film studies to advanced cinematography, and directing. CCSF student films have screened around the world after premiering at City Shorts. Students compete for prizes donated by BAVC, JCX Expendables, SFFILM, LittleGiant, and MORE, ensuring this is just the beginning of their film production career.

$5-$20 suggested donation