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Three is the magic number on Sunday, February 19, when SBCAST (S.B. Center for Art, Science and Technology) will host its first-ever 3-Minute Film Festival. With a schedule of 18 films from all over the world, it’s a celebration of compact renderings of cinematic forms, perfectly sized statements in a mediascape of YouTube channels and Twitter feeds. Coming just a week after the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, it’s something like a palate-cleansing petit four course following the larger cinematic feast of the previous weeks.

Festival director and SBCAST curator Lynn M. Holley put out a call for three-minute works made within the last three years and falling into one of three categories: narrative, documentary, and experimental. Holley views the short films as concise expressions in tune with our increasing need for communication speed. “It comes down to tweeting and texting,” she said. “I think it’s harder to sit through longer films now unless they’re super good.” But what’s more, she said, this style of filmmaking asks creators to sharpen and condense their craft akin to a poem for a novelist, and it’s a great format for young filmmakers.

The festival will showcase live-action and animated shorts from countries such as Iran, Italy, Japan, and Romania, as well as three area films. Highlights include a pair of S.B. student films created through the Dance on Camera Mentorship with student dancer/filmmakers from the 2016 Arts Fund Mentorship Program, one of which will feature live music by Freya Phillips and Curran McCrory to a piece arranged by student producer Allie Cole, and another by a Ukrainian exchange student in her second year at Anacapa High School. “The two films are brimming with vitality and mystery and set at the shore, which has its own significance,” said mentor Robin Bisio.

The festival will conclude with a longer piece, the 10-minute Till Human Voices Wake Us, starring Lindsay Lohan and preceded by a reading of T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” after which the film is named. In all, it will be a short, sweet showcase of stimulating cinema.

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