Staff Report

Just before its one-year anniversary, the Central Coast Film Society has received 501(c)3 nonprofit status from the Internal Revenue Service.

“This is a new chapter for us. It’s a really exciting time. I feel like we can finally get to work in getting funds and grants so we can really help out the community. We also want to cultivate local artists and help grow their talents and inspire new generations of filmmakers. That’s what we are going to really be able to do now with additional funding,” said Daniel Lahr, executive director of the Central Coast Film Society (CCFS).

The goal of the CCFS is to provide local filmmakers and films a venue to call home, to foster future media artists, and to create opportunities to get involved in the industry by hosting lectures, screenings and eventually a film festival in the Santa Ynez Valley.

The society’s first event as an official nonprofit is the screening of the 1995 Disney film “Pocahontas” at 9 a.m. Sunday, April 7, at Parks Plaza Theater in Buellton. The event will include a talk with former Disney illustrator and Santa Ynez Valley native Art Alvarez.

Alvarez was hired by Disney to provide illustrations of the film’s characters for promotional materials and advertisements. He said in a recent talk at the Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum that illustrating is extremely difficult because it has to match the original animations to the exact hue.

This summer CCFS will host a short-film competition involving student and other amateur film makers by giving everyone a set of rules. Participants will have to come up with a script, produce and put together a film with a common prop or theme.

The rules for the competition will be posted on the CCFS website in late spring.

Tickets for the “Pocahontas” screening are $5 for two people, $8 for a family of four, and free for CCFS members (limit 2 per member).

After the screening, people who want to talk about films can go to the nearby Panda Express, which will donate 20 percent of sales from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to CCFS.

For more information, log onto or follow CCFS on Instagram and Facebook.