Join us for our most highly anticipated and festive evening as we celebrate award-winning films as well as our 2020 Spotlight and King Vidor Award recipients on the stage of the historic Fremont Theater.The 26th Annual King Vidor Award will be presented to Director/Screenwriter/Producer, Lawrence Kasdan.

With a long impressive list of screenwriting and directing credits, Lawrence Kasdan is the perfect honoree for our 26th Annual Career Achievement Award. His movies are an eclectic mix of genres, showing his vast range as an artist, much like the namesake of this award, King Vidor.

Presented by BHE Renewables and Justin Vineyards and Winery, the King Vidor Award presentation will take place immediately after the George Sidney Independent Film Awards ceremony. Following the presentation, Turner Classic Movies’ Ben Mankiewicz will host a discussion of Kasdan’s impressive career.

Kasdan’s introduction to film fans as a screenwriter came via two of the all-time popular classics of the 80s and beyond: STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (1980) and RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (1981). What would follow were a string of films that, while varied in setting and style, cemented Kasdan, the writer/director, as one of the top talents behind the camera helping set the tone for a decade onscreen: BODY HEAT (1983), THE BIG CHILL (1983) – for which he received his first Academy Award nomination for Best Screenplay, SILVERADO (1985), and THE ACCIDENTAL TOURIST (1988), for which he received nominations for both Best Picture and Best Screenplay Adaptation. The latter two films, Kasdan also produced.

Prolific, Kasdan continued to both write and direct films throughout the next decade, with highlights including; the critically acclaimed GRAND CANYON (1991), which he co-wrote with his wife, Meg Kasdan (and received another Academy Award nomination for Best Screenplay), as well as directed and produced; the box-office smash, Mick Jackson’s THE BODYGUARD (1992), which Kasdan wrote and produced; the epic western WYATT EARP (1994), which he co-wrote with Dan Gordon, directed, and produced; the Meg Ryan/Kevin Kline romantic comedy FRENCH KISS (1995), which he helmed; and the lightly comedic drama MUMFORD (1999), which he wrote, directed and produced.

2003’s DREAMCATCHER (co-written with William Goldman) and 2012’s DARLING COMPANION (co-written with Meg Kasdan), Kasdan’s other two outings as writer, director, and producer, could not have been more different from one another. The former being an adaptation of one of Steven King’s more gonzo horror works, and the latter being an introspective drama centered around the love for and loss of a dog. 

Kasdan, the screenwriter, has also been one of the architects of the growing Star Wars universe, having written STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS (2015), and SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY (2018). Most recently, he has turned his attention to documentary filmmaking and will be attending SLO Film Fest screenings of his and Meg Kasdan’s, LAST WEEK AT ED’S, about the closing of the beloved Ed’s Coffee Shop in West Hollywood.

Saturday, March 21
7pm | Fremont Theater, SLO
$20 General / $15 Students
All Access passes and Red Carpet tickets

AWARDS NIGHT AFTER PARTY
Sponsored by
Big Sky Cafe, Windows on the Water,Novo, SLO Provisions, Sheila Kearns Chocolate & Confections
and Ancient Peaks, Sculpterra and Stanger Vineyards
Party the night away with the award winners and great live music by The Tipsy Gypsies at the SLO Museum of Art, just a quick walk from the Fremont Theater through Mission Plaza. Enjoy epic food, wine, beer and cider from local purveyors and festival sponsors.


Major Thanks to Loyal Sponsor

American General Media
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You can pick up our physical program guides and passes at our headquarters at the Hotel San Luis Obispo starting Wednesday, February 26th from 12pm to 2pm. Check our website for HQ hours.

See you at the movies!

Wendy Eidson & Skye McLennan
SLO Film Fest Director & Associate Director