The mission of the California Film Institute is to celebrate and promote film as art and education. 

This goal is achieved through our three core programs

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Christopher B. Smith
Rafael Film Center


This beautifully restored, state-of-the-art, three-screen theater is one of few nonprofit theaters in the United States. The venue exhibits independent features, documentaries, classics, retrospectives, international works and hosts special events with filmmakers from around the world year-round.
The Film Center serves approximately 150,000 attendees annually.


Mill Valley
Film Festival


Founded in 1978 by California Film Institute director Mark Fishkin. The world-renowned 11-day festival is held every October, screening over 200 innovative US and international films for over 40,000 film lovers. It has established an impressive track record for launching new films and new filmmakers, and has earned a reputation as a filmmakersā€™ festival by offering a high-profile, prestigious, noncompetitive environment for celebrating the best in independent and world cinema. The annual event is consistently rated as one of the top film festivals in the nation.




Through innovate educational programs, 100 free annual screenings for school groups and their families, filmmaking workshops and a year-long cinema appreciation curriculum, CFI Education touches the lives of over 5,000 children annually. Utilizing a broad range of activities, ranging from Q&A sessions with top international filmmakers to seminars with industry professionals CFI Education promotes tolerance and a sophisticated world view by expanding classroom topics across borders and disciplines.