South Asian Film Festival returns to Renton for third year

Seattle South Asian Film Festival begins Oct. 14 in Seattle and ends Oct. 23 at Carco Theater.

The annual Seattle South Asian Film Festival (SSAFF) kicks off next week and for the third year in a row, they’re ending the party in Renton.

The festival opens Oct. 14 with an opening night gala at Seattle Art Museum and will end Oct. 23 at Carco Theater in Renton with closing awards and reception. The closing ceremony also includes a screening of Indian film “Waiting,” featuring acclaimed Bollywood actors Naseeruddin Shah and Kalki Koechlin.

SSAFF is in its 11th year of highlighting provocative and meaningful films from and about South Asian countries including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and more. This year, the festival is screening 23 feature films and 22 shorts from nine countries.

The theme this year is Love Wins, inspired from #LoveWins movement.

“Love Wins champions the idea that love can empower and elevate humanity during these difficult and dynamic times, when fear and vitriol toward immigrants, Muslims and others runs rampant,” said Rita Meher, co-founder and executive director of Tasveer, the organization that’s producing the festival.

Renton has been a regular stop for the film festival for three years, largely due to its diversity and its growing film scene.

“Renton has been a long-time supporter of SSAFF and is one of the most diverse cities in the state of Washington,” said festival spokesperson Sara Huey. “Part of our mission is to bring films that matter to the people across the Puget Sound region.”

The festival starts Oct. 14 at Seattle with a screening of a Bangladeshi thriller drama “Aynabaji.” The film’s actor, Chanchal Chowdhury, is expected to attend the screening.

A panel of filmmakers will participate in a symposium Oct. 18 at University of Washington to discuss race, sexuality and censorship in film, art and activism in India. This is a free panel.

Renton’s screenings begin at noon, Saturday, Oct. 22 with two movies about mental health issues, “Stuck in Time” and “Unbroken Glass.” The closing gala starts 4 p.m., Oct. 23 with Indian film “Waiting” and American short “Brother, Omar Mateen.”

For more information about SSAFF, ticket pricing and full list of screenings, visit


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