Hours & Directions

Mon, Tue: Closed

Wed - Sun : 10am - 5pm

Bay Area International Children's Film Festival



Saturday, March 11th (10am - 8pm)
Screenings and workshops begin at 10am, doors open at 9:30am
*$5.00 admission for adults and children after 5pm for festival screening only. Exhibits will close at normal hours.

Sunday, March 12th (10am - 5pm)
Screenings and workshops begin at 10am, doors open at 9:30am

Chabot Space & Science Center and the Bay Area International Children’s Film Festival have joined forces to present the 9th annual Playdate for the Imagination™ where education and imagination collide. In its 9th year, the festival continues to delight and inspire Bay Area families with a full weekend of events and special programs that include internationally celebrated family-friendly films, special presentations from Award-Winning Pixar filmmakers, hands-on animation workshops and more. This year’s theme of science, technology, engineering, art and math, STEAM, will be featured in the films and with the hands-on programs offered in the Center.


BAICFF is an annual Playdate for the Imagination™ where education and imagination collide. The festival offers families a cinematic view of the world’s varied cultures and traditions. The films inspire curiosity and conversation, and allow children to experience a wide range of cultural perspectives.


  • Guest Adult: $25 / Youth: $14 (includes admission to the center)
  • 2 Day Weekend Pass: Adult $35 / Youth: $20
  • Member Adult: $15 / Youth: $7 (includes admission to the center)
  • 2 Day Weekend Pass: Adult $21 / Youth: $10

Festival Tickets

Tickets can also be purchased at the Front Desk on the day of the event
All tickets include General Admission to the Center


Brave: Women Breaking the Mold

Join us for this exciting and thought provoking evening with a panel of leading women in the field of animation and film making. This discussion will focus on women who are pushing the boundaries of what has been expected of women in media.

Date: March 10, 2017
Time: 7pm
Price: $12 Adults; $6 Youth

Buy Tickets Here


Brenda Chapman, Writer/Director

Brenda Chapman started her career as a story artist at Walt Disney Feature Animation in 1987, where she worked on films such as The Little Mermaid, The Rescuers Down Under, the Oscar nominated Beauty and the Beast, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Fantasia 2000. Chapman was the story supervisor on The Lion King, for which she won the Annie Award. Chapman then helped launch DreamWorks Animation Studios, where she co-directed the 1998 release of the Oscar winning Prince of Egypt. Chapman was the first woman to direct an animated feature for a major Hollywood studio, for which she won the Movieguide Epiphany and Teddy Awards. She joined Pixar Animation Studios in September 2003 as a senior story artist on Cars. Chapman then created, wrote and directed Brave – inspired by her relationship with her own daughter - for which she won an Oscar, BAFTA and Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film.

Other awards include the Novus Creative Catalyst Award, the 2013 Burbank International Film Festival’s Feature Animation Honoree Award and the San Francisco International Women’s Film Festival Achievement Award. Chapman has helped to develop and consult on films for several studios over many years which include not only Disney, DreamWorks and Pixar, but also Universal, Sony, Lucasfilm and Fox. Currently, Chapman is writing, directing and producing several projects in different stages of development. She has been engaged to write and direct a Chinese financed/American made feature-animated film – working title Truth for Truth Pictures and is attached to direct Come Away, a live action film written by Marissa Goodhill. She is also collaborating on a hybrid script, working title The Touch, with her husband, director Kevin Lima (Enchanted, A Goofy Movie, Disney’s Tarzan).

Cameo Wood, Filmmaker

Cameo Wood is a local Bay Area Filmmaker. Her debut short documentary film, "Dukha in Summer" was shot solo in Northern Mongolia and premiered at the St.Louis Film Festival. Cameo wrote, produced, and directed "Real Artists", a narrative thriller about Artificial Intelligence and the future of filmmaking. Cameo's career began in 2012 when she produced, and co-directed the web series "The Alternative Guide to Secret Beijing" which was then featured on Atlas Obscura. Cameo has since won awards for her direction, cinematography, and screenwriting. She is currently in pre-production on her first feature.

Deanna Marsigliese, Character Designer

Deanna Marsigliese is a Character Designer at Pixar Animation Studios. Originally from Toronto, Canada, Deanna first entered the industry as a 2D animator. Over the last 15 years, she has contributed to a wide variety of commercial, television and feature film projects, while teaching both Classical Animation and character development at College level. Deanna is a vintage enthusiast and collector of mid-century clothing. When she isn’t drawing, Deanna explores the world, dabbling in travel photography and satisfying her fascination with amazing cultures around the planet.

Robin Hunicke, Video Game Designer

Robin Hunicke is the Co-Founder of the independent game studio Funomena, which creates experimental games for Console, PC, VR & AR platforms (Luna, Woorld and Wattam) in the heart of downtown San Francisco. A game designer and producer by training, she has a background in Computer Science, Art and applied Game Studies. She has been designing, making and teaching about games for over 12 years (Journey, Boom Blox, MySims, TheSims2).

Robin is an outspoken evangelist for increasing the participation of women and underrepresented minorities within the Arts, Games & Tech. She is Associate Professor of the Arts Division at UC Santa Cruz, Director of the Art, Games & Playable Media BA and faculty in the Digital Art and New Media MFA. She also supports a broad range of initiatives including: Amplifying New Voices, the annual Experimental Gameplay Workshop, Play SFMOMA, the Lexus Design Award, Google Made with Code, Girls Make Games, and the CS For All initiative.


Children can learn filmmaking techniques and produce their own short animated video by enrolling in the workshops listed below. The workshops require a fee in addition to the film festival tickets and are instructed by filmmakers and animators from Berkeley City College's Multimedia program. Each day workshop films can be seen on a big screen in the afternoons of the festival. Films produced in the workshops will be available for download by participants.

Clay Puppet Workshop

Our most popular workshop! Decorate and film your very own, professional stop-motion puppet and take the puppet home with you. Spend the first half of the workshop personalizing your "actor” with googly eyes, buttons, feathers, etc. Then lights, camera, action – it’s time to make your puppet come alive. Use your imagination to place your little "actor” in a series of poses that add up to action!

Date: Saturday March 11
Start Times: 9:30am, 10:15am, 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm
Duration: 45 minutes
Age Range: 7 – 14 years old
Price: $30
Number of Participants per Time-Slot: 10




Pixilation & Foley Workshops

What is Pixilation? It’s an animation technique that uses the most readily available tool at your disposal – your body! In this workshop, the participants are the actors. Just change your pose slightly from one photo frame to the next and you will magically float, fly around a room, ice skate, disappear and reappear in a different location, slide along the ground, drive an invisible car, or almost anything else you can imagine!

You add the sound! In addition to creating your film using pixilation you will then add your own sound effects in our Foley Sound workshop. At no additional cost, we will record you creating noises on our foley stage to the live playback of your pixilation film. We will provide a variety of noise making objects and props, you can even use your own mouth to make explosions - boom!, car engine noises - vroom! vroom! or other bips and boops.

Date: Saturday March 11 & Sunday March 12
*Remember to adjust clocks on March 12th for daylight savings!
Start Times (Sat): 9:30am, 10:00am, 10:30am, 11:00am, 11:30am 12:00pm, 12:30pm, 1:00pm
Start Times (Sun): 9:30am 10:00am, 10:30am, 11:00am, 11:30am, 12:00pm, 12:30pm, 1:00pm
Duration: 55 minutes
Age Range: 6 – 14 years old
Price: $30
Number of Participants per Time-Slot: 4



How to Be a Kid Critic Workshop presented by Common Sense Media

We are delighted to work with Common Sense Media to present "How to Be a Kid Critic” at this year’s festival. Our children are consuming an enormous amount of media, often filled with conflicting information. ”We can’t cover our kids’ eyes, but we can teach them to see,” said Common Sense Media’s founding editor in chief, Liz Perle. In this workshop, kids will develop their media literacy skills, learning what it means to evaluate media critically through discussion and hands-on activities. Participants will see film clips and review them based on Common Sense’s unique rating system. They will also be shown a selection of news stories and learn why it’s so important not to take everything they see in the media at face value.

Date: Saturday March 11 & Sunday March 12
*Remember to adjust clocks on March 12th for daylight savings!
Start Time: 11am
Duration: 75 minutes
Age Range: 8-14
Price: $15
Number of Participants: 30

Found Object Workshops

Using found objects, participants will create short stop-motion animated films. Select your objects and use your imagination to change their placement slightly from one photo frame to the next to tell a story. Watch the objects come alive as they disappear and reappear, travel from one side of the screen to another, or magically create cool patterns and designs.

Date: Sunday March 12th
*Remember to adjust clocks on March 12th for daylight savings!
Start Times: 9:30am, 10:15am, 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm
Duration: 45 minutes
Age Range: 7 – 14 years old
Price: $25
Number of Participants per Time-Slot: 10


Introduction to Animation Character Design : with Pixar character designer Deanna Marsigliese.

This is a rare workshop opportunity not to be missed! In an extensive 3 hour workshop, learn what goes into designing an animation character by one of the top designers in the business today, Deanna Marsigliese. This workshop is not about characters with big eyes and silly faces this is the real deal! Story telling through shape, line and color. Using real materials, pencils, markers, cutouts and glue participants will learn what makes a character read with appeal, with humor, with villainy, with well a story to tell. Deanna is also the host of the podcast Straight Against the Curve about character design, so participants should not be surprised if she happens to pull out her recorder for an impromptu interview.

Date: Sunday March 12th
*Remember to adjust clocks on March 12th for daylight savings!
Start Time: 10:30am
Duration: 2 hours
Age Range: 6-9 years old
Price: $10
Number of Participants: 20