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A woman and a girl sitting on a bench.

SFFILM Festival

Janet Planet

Directed by Annie Baker

USA | Fiction | 113

27 Apr
Sat, Apr 27 at 2:30 pm PT
28 Apr
Sun, Apr 28 at 4:45 pm PT


In 1991, the summer before middle school, Lacy (Zoe Ziegler) brims with questions and gripes. Tightly bonded with her unmarried mom, Janet (Julianne Nicholson), she’s slowly moving from her parent’s orbit into her own, and this remarkable debut from prize-winning playwright Annie Baker portrays this shift with careful intimacy and a wonderfully askew visual eye. Living in rural Massachusetts, Lacy’s days are languorous but not without incident — she has piano lessons, races around the mall with the daughter of Janet’s boyfriend, and attends an odd outdoor theatrical headed up by a semi-guru type named Avi (Elias Koteas). The film is remarkably astute in illustrating how adolescent self-awareness builds from small life experiences and careful observation of adult behavior, and Ziegler perfectly captures the churning of Lacy’s brain and emotions. As Janet, Nicholson is equally astonishing, ever-so-slightly dissatisfied with her life but always there to be the gently listening ear for her unique child.

Director Annie Baker

Janet Planet marks playwright Annie Baker’s feature debut. Among her works for theater are Body Awareness (2008), her first play produced Off-Broadway; Circle Mirror Transformation (2009) and The Aliens (2010), which shared an Obie award for Best New American Play; an adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya (2012), The Flick (2012), which won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama; John (2015); The Antipodes (2017); and Infinite Life (2023). In 2017, she was named a MacArthur Fellow.

Film Details

Language English

Year 2023

Premiere California

Runtime 113

Country USA

Director Annie Baker

Executive Producer Rose Garnett, Eva Yates, Chelsea Barnard

Producer Dan Janvey, Derek Tseng, Annie Baker, Andrew Goldman

Writer Annie Baker

Editor Lucian Johnson

Cinematographer Maria von Hausswolff

Cast Julianne Nicholson, Zoe Ziegler, Elias Koteas

Closed Captions Closed Captions are confirmed for this program

Audio Description Audio Descriptions are confirmed for this program

American Sign Language (ASL) Interpretation American Sign Language Interpretation is not currently scheduled for this film