This is what we are all about
Short Film – END OF WAR
Narrative Feature – THE SUFFERING
Documentary Feature – 3/12 MINUTES, TEN BULLETS
FL Short Film – LEAN
Narrative Feature – NIGHT OWLS
Short Sponsored by Indiepix – THE WHISPERS

We are looking for unique visions from the next great storytellers to bring to our audiences. Submit now!


Marketing, Screen Films, love film? Then join our 2015 Festival Team! Internships available as well.


Brand Integration using custom innovative and creative programs to engage your audience. Maximum exposure!


Erik Lunseth
Director: Executive & Operations

Erik Lunseth is a founder of the Skyway Film Festival. He served the last 4 years (2011- 2014) as a member of the Board of Directors for a top international film festival where he ran the film screening program and founded a screenplay competition. While championing the work of filmmakers and artists requires a global perspective, Erik facilitates the needs of internal and external partners with a hands-on role. Along with being an advocate for film visionaries, Erik is a writer, commercial and feature film actor and producer.

Joseph Restaino
Director: Artistic & Programming

Joe Restaino is a founder of the Skyway Film Festival. His work as a financial advisor to several in the entertainment industry led to his passion for film producing and film festivals. He is a recent alum of Independent Film Project(IFP) No Borders program at Lincoln Center, attends Sundance annually as an Industry Member and has been a guest juror at several film festivals. He overseas creative direction and has final decision on film programming for Skyway. As a programmer and consultant for several festivals, Joe solidifies World Premiere screenings and arranges appearances of some of the best independent filmmakers.

Wey Lin
Director: Interactive Marketing

Wey Lin is a founder of the Skyway Film Festival. She plays a central role in defining, promoting & communicating Skyway Film Festival’s branding strategy built around the needs of film industry artists, community supporters and festival attendees. Her film and entertainment industry experience includes programming at the top film festival in the Tampa Bay area and working as a program coordinator at the Cannes Film Festival. She currently is the promotions manager for Campus MovieFest, the world’s largest student film festival.

Jennifer Davidson
Director: Digital Communications

Jennifer Davidson is responsible for telling our story online in new and compelling ways which connect the community and all film artists to Skyway Film Festival. She works collaberatively with a wide range of partners to share our story, build awareness and increase attendance. With extensive experience executing marketing and communication strategies, Jennifer is also a CPA, MBA and is able to manage multiple initiatives at once. She currently is a creative partner with a top film festival.

Shana Nichols – Technical Director Melissa West – Festival Coordinator Karlie Loland – Events Coordinator Mattox Gardner – Programmer Mary Rachel Dudley – Programmer

Jorge Hermez
Director: Creative

Jorge Hermez is the owner of Go2 Creative, an ad agency which most recently worked on the creative roll-out for “Sex Ed”, a local independent film featured across the nation. When designing the Skyway Film Festival poster, he was inspired by the calm before the storm. That moment of clarity for creatives, where work really begins to flow – that crucial moment before developing a great idea.


The organizers have been a part of other successful film festivals, produce independent films and travel to festivals all over the World to bring their knowledge to make Skyway a worthwhile film festival for filmmakers and audiences. The Skyway Film Festival team looks to capitalize on industry relationships to make it a must-attend fest!

The premiere entertainment communication and marketing firm PMK*BNC has partnered with Skyway to bring their breadth of contacts and assets to the festival. The festival inspires to bring a new cultural experience to the area that will resonate throughout the community.


Arts industry individuals bring their expertise to award the winners of the festival.

Dori Sperko, (Sex Ed, XY)
Ryan O’Nan, Actor/Writer (Ray Donovan, The Iceman)
Daniel Bort, Expression Entertainment, President
Andre Holland, Actor (The Knick/Selma)
Leslie Cohen, HBO, VP of Programming
Lee Broda, Actor/Producer (Amnesiac/The Phenom)
Caroline Connor, Producer (Chu and Blossom/Franny)
Michael Darrow, Editor (Albion: The Rise of Danann/Casual Encounters)
Marty Clear, Bradenton Herald
Julie La’Bassiere, BAFTA, CEO


Dori Sperko, Sundance Catalyst Producer
Ryan O’Nan, Actor, Director, Writer
Paul Wilson, Wilson Media & Advertising
Marian Koltai-Levine, PMK*BNC, Executive VP
Leslie Cohen, HBO, VP of Programming
Debbie Meihls, Bradenton Area Film Commission
Elliott Falcione, Bradenton Area CVB, Executive Director
Heather Rae, Academy Nominated Producer
Julie La’Bassiere, BAFTA, CEO


Making the impossible possible. That’s what Film does.

Festival tickets can be purchased at the Manatee Performing Arts Center in person, by phone or online by clicking the link below and choosing SKYWAY FILM FESTIVAL event name and then clicking SEARCH located to the right. Get your festival passes NOW!


Skyway Film Festival dates June 12-14, 2015. Program guides will be available in print and an online. See what’s playing NOW!

Filmmaker Info

Welcome Filmmakers! Skyway Film Festival partners with FilmFreeway for online film submissions.


Skyway Film Festival starts with a story but it doesn’t end there. From conversations with industry leaders and special guests to eclectic music from indie musicians, stand up comedy and live painting, Skyway Film Festival entertains and educates by offering something for everyone. And did we mention the PARTIES? Choose your event NOW!


The Skyway Film Festival will provide a wonderful “weekend getaway” for the brightest minds in the film and television industry. The Riverfront Courtyard Marriott is our host hotel and special festival rates are available. You must call the hotel property directly.


The beauty and charm of the Gulf Islands: Bradenton, Anna Maria Island and Longboat Key will be the “Hollywood” backdrop that showcases the works of filmmakers from all over the world. The goal of the festival itself is to combine the excitement and experience of Hollywood with the relaxing atmosphere of a vacation.