Volunteer Spotlight: Tommy Vu

tommyvuAfter Tommy Vu's family moved to America from Vietnam in 1993, they lived in various states until they landed in San Jose, California in 1998 where Tommy was born.When he was only 3 months old, his family settled in Sarasota, Florida.

Now a senior at Sarasota High School, Tommy is an aspiring graphic designer. He began volunteering for the Sarasota Film Festival last year and caught our attention when we hosted a Shiftboard Orientation for Volunteers. Only two people showed up, Tommy and his friend Natalie Luong. Ever since then, Tommy has manned the merchandise table at the Moonlight Movies, worked in Theater-Tech, and screened and reviewed films for our Programming department. You also might recognize him from the Volunteer video...he is the one breakdancing in the Hollywood 20 Theater lobby.


What are your hopes once you graduate high school?

I hope to attend the University of Florida. As of right now I plan to major in Advertisment, focusing more on the artistic side of the field such as creating logos.

You have an interest in graphic design, is there a certain style that would describe your work or a specific graphic designer you follow?

There's no certain style I try and follow, I started dabbling in graphic design last year and let the style basically change naturally with each project. I do on the other hand follow some outstanding artists that inspired me to start designing after seeing their work, as well as tutorials. The artists that inspired me the most are Will Paterson, who does unbelievable hand lettering, and a graphic designer that goes by the name Swerve.

When you are not busy studying or volunteering for the Sarasota Film Festival, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

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This year the Sarasota Film Festival was able to expand its LGBT programming, thanks to a generous grant from Our Sarasota Fun. The SFF Programming Team selected the very best LGBT films this year and created a panel discussion about LGBT filmmaking.




Michael Dunaway, SFF Director of Programming, has proclaimed FIRST GIRL I LOVED as one of his favorite films this year.  This coming out story involving a high school girl is so authentic, so universal, that somehow you’ll feel it’s your story too. It taps into the feeling we all have at some point in middle or high school of not fitting in, of confused identity-building, of feeling different and not even knowing how to articulate it. One of the most powerful elements is that there really are no bad guys in this film, just well-meaning people getting in their own way. This won the Audience Award, NEXT section, at the Sundance Film Festival.

Friday, April 8, 4:45pm

Sunday, April 10, 6:45pm


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KATEPLAYSCHRISTINEOur local program draws a large crowd each year, so we recommend getting tickets while you can! Here are our picks for films that were shot in Florida, by Florida filmmakers, and about Florida.

 As with all of our programs, these films are not rated and may contain material of a sensitive nature. For films for the family please take a look at our youthFEST program!

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