Cambodia Town Film Festival Tickets Go On Sale


Tickets for the first Cambodia Town Film Festival went on sale this week, kicking off a three-month countdown to the one-of-a-kind cultural forum.

Held on September 14 and 15 at the Art Theatre, CTFF will showcase new studio and independent features, documentaries, foreign features, short films, animated shorts, trailers, music videos and re-released classics–all of which deal with Cambodian themes or were made by a filmmaker of Cambodian descent.

Through performances, panel discussions and special events held all weekend, attendees will have an opportunity to interact with both emerging and seasoned filmmakers as well as experience Cambodian culture through a medium not often associated with the Southeast Asian country.  

“The decline of Cambodians in cinema began during the Khmer Rouge era circa the 1970s,” said Caylee So, CTFF’s co-founder. “Since then, few films exceeding or of that same caliber have been produced or directed. But what you are seeing right now in 2013 is a resurgence of Cambodian arts, culture and films…I was at the premiere of The East, with a former Chapman University Professor of mine, and as we were talking about Cambodia Town Film Festival, he said to me, ‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Cambodian Film.’ I smiled and replied, ‘You will.'”

paulina screenshot

Screenshots from Paulina

Though film submissions are being accepted through July 31, several major titles sceening at the festival have already been announced including Saturday’s double feature of Still I Strive and A River Changes Course, the latter of which won the World Cin­ema Grand Jury Prize at Sundance this year. 

So’s thesis short film Paulina as well as local band Dengue Fever’s 2007 documentary centering around Cambodian psych rock will also be showing. CTFF committee members say the selection process has been more on an invitational basis since the pool of available films is smaller than a regular film festival would be. Since CTFF is the only one of its kind in the country to specifically highlight Cambodian films, however, 

“The excitement and support for this festival has been tremendous and it has expanded so globally that when September comes, we’re hoping to pack the theaters and to inspire future filmmakers to continue to carry on our stories,” said So. “That’s why we began this festival and we hope to be around for a very long time to come.”

Tickets are being sold in every increment imaginable from individual screenings (starting at $11) to day passes ($25) to a full weekend pass ($40). A VIP access pass grants entry to all screening and after-party events as well as special programming and events on Friday not open to the general public. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

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Sarah Bennett is a contributor to the Hi-lo and the editor-at-large at the Long Beach Post. She is also a professor at Santa Ana College where she was once a student before transferring to USC to earn her bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Sarah has written about music, art, food and beer in local, national and international publications for over a decade. An L.A. native and longtime resident of Long Beach, she is the co-founder of Long Beach Zine Fest and managing editor at theLAnd magazine. She never sleeps.