According to the guide published on the official website of the 18th edition of the Sarasota Film Festival (SFF) this year's event will award both audience and jury picks. Audience awards are given to Best Narrative Feature, Documentary, World Cinema and Short, while Juried awards are presented for Best Narrative Feature, Documentary Feature, Independent Visions, Narrative Short, Documentary Short, and Animated Short.
Iranian director Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami is among the people whose works are in the competition. Ghaem Maghami's SONITA is about an 18-year old Afghan girl whose mother is trying to sell her to a groom in order to collect the money needed for buying a bride for Sonita's brother. The 91 minute film is produced jointly by Iran, Germany and Switzerland.
Autumn Leaves is a 4 minute short film directed by another Iranian director Saman Hosseinpour who is present at the event. The short film is about a little girl who voices her appreciation of nature on the way to school.