CAAMFest (presented by the Center for Asian American Media) is the nation’s largest showcase for new Asian and Asian American films, presenting approximately 130 works in San Francisco and Oakland. Since 1982, the annual festival has been an important launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers as well as a vital source for new Asian cinema.

CAAMFest aspires to incite dialogue and community engagement, motivated by “the innovative ways Asian Americans are contributing to and shaping American identity and culture,” says Stephen Gong, Executive Director of CAAM. In doing so, CAAMFest also showcases music, food, and interactive workshops.

Although 2020 has been an unprecedented year due to the global pandemic (COVID-19), CAAMFest has continues to present vibrant public programs throughout the year. CAAM hosted 2 mostly virtual festivals: CAAMFest: Heritage at Home (May 2020) and CAAMFest FORWARD (Oct 2020), which includes over 100 unique virtual screenings/presentations, in-person Drive-In screenings, over 10K attendees and 200 filmmakers participate.

CAAMFest 2021 is currently expected to be a robust array of in-person and virtual screenings and events. To stay up to date on CAAMFest 2021 plans, keep an eye on CAAM's social media and website: caamedia.org.

About CAAM:
The Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) is a non profit organization dedicated to presenting stories that convey the richness and diversity of Asian American experiences to the broadest audience possible. We do this by funding, producing, distributing and exhibiting works in film, television and digital media.

2020 Juried Awards:
Best Narrative Feature
Best Documentary Feature
Loni Ding Award for Social Issue Documentary

Audience Awards:
Best Narrative Feature
Best Documentary Feature

2019 Juried Awards:
Comcast Best Narrative Feature
Best Documentary Feature
SF Film Critics Award (for International Features)
Loni Ding Award for Social Issue Documentary
INSPIRASIAN Student Film Awards

Audience Awards:
Best Narrative Feature
Best Documentary Feature

By submitting your film for consideration, you grant CAAM permission to screen the above-mentioned work at the 2021 CAAMFest (formerly San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival) if accepted and warrants that all necessary steps have been taken to obtain the rights to use and display the work. Signatory also gives CAAM permission to use stills and excerpts from accepted works for promotional purposes.

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • CAAMFest is one of my favorite festivals. I've attended it in the past and this year I got to participate as one of the official selection narrative features. They did a wonderful job with the online networking events and I was able to meet a lot of different artists through their multiple events. The staff are all really friendly and helpful and did such a great job in making this an awesome festival experience. There was a really great mix of different films and I enjoyed watching them. I would definitely recommend folks check out this festival, it really is one of the best.

    June 2021
  • Myat Noe

    They have so many virtual meet-up events for 2021 edition and nice drive-in venue. The communications are frequent and they really take care of filmmakers.

    May 2021
  • CAAMFest is a world class film festival in every way, and by far one of the best festivals we’ve ever experienced. The curation of the films is stellar - we were truly honored to be part of this tremendous field of projects and artists. The communication and professionalism are excellent. The special programs are fantastic. And during the pandemic, the festival created a really ingenious hybrid of live and online events, and found brilliant ways of bringing the online community together. CAAMFest is like the Sundance for Asian and AAPI film, and we can’t wait to attend as audience members next year. Thank you, Masashi Niwano and team for an unforgettable experience.

    May 2021
  • Sujata Day

    So great to return here with my directorial debut feature, after premiering my short film here in 2017. Masashi and the CAAMFest team made the most of a virtual experience, despite the unusual circumstances. We had fun on the panel and our Best Narrative win made it extra special!

    November 2020
  • Baldwin Chiu

    It's hard to give this festival less than a 5 because 2020 will probably be the worse year to ever release movies. CAAMFest did so much to keep things going in the virtual world even more so than the larger mainstream festivals. They worked tirelessly and the only thing I regret is not being there live. It's so hard to network and make new friends virtually. The live experience is what we had our hopes on but... well...2020. We hope we can come back in person when the world reopens.

    October 2020