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SFFILM Festival

Opening Night: Stay Awake


Thu, Apr 21

7:30 PM Stay Awake

Castro Theatre

9:00 PM Opening Night Party

The San Francisco Mint

a person sits in their living room surrounded by balloons

Stay Awake

A tender portrait emerges of the day-to-day fight for sobriety and the hopeful resilience of families attempting to overcome addiction in this powerful drama that will make you laugh and cry.


Kick off the 2022 Festival in style with a soirée at the historic San Francisco Mint, featuring live entertainment, dancing, and treats from some of the Bay Area’s finest food and beverage purveyors.

SFFILM Opening Night party

Guests Expected

Director Jamie Sisley, producer Shrihari Sathe, and actors Albert Jones, Chrissy Metz, Fin Argus, and Quinn McColgan are expected to attend.



Rarely conveyed in the headlines decrying the opioid epidemic are the personal struggles of addicts – daily fighting for sobriety and the hopeful resilience of their families. For teenagers Derek (Fin Argus) and Ethan (Wyatt Oleff), the situation is all too familiar as they pace the streets searching for their painkiller-dependent mother, Michelle. This Is Us star Chrissy Metz, playing Michelle, delivers a nuanced portrayal of guilt and shame that fearlessly digs into the trauma of recovery, while newcomers Argus and Oleff infuse the film with vulnerability and unexpected humor. First-time feature director Jamie Sisley masterfully builds a relatable world full of characters that vibrate with authenticity in this powerful, SFFILM-supported drama that will stick with you long after you exit the theater. North American premiere

Director Jamie Sisley

Jamie Sisley has an MFA in film from Columbia University. Among his short films are Ladybug (2012), Love in Four Parts (2013), and We’re All Gonna Die (2016). He also directed, with Miguel ‘M.i.G.’ Martinez, Farewell Ferris Wheel (2018), a documentary that was nominated for an Outstanding Business and Economic News & Documentary Emmy Award. His 2015 short film, Stay Awake, won the Best Narrative Short Grand Jury Prize at the Slamdance Film Festival. Stay Awake (2022), his adaptation of that short and his first feature, won the AG Kino Gilde – Cinema Vision 14plus prize and a Youth Jury Special Mention at the Berlin International Film Festival.

Film Details

Language English

Year 2022

Premiere North American

Runtime 94

Country USA

Director Jamie Sisley

Executive Producer Shannon Akegarasu, Heidi Castelein, Saaz Haque, Ozo Jaculewicz, Adam Kirszner, Nion McEvoy, Chrissy Metz, Barbara Perry, Hannah Pillemer, Rick Rosenthal, Nancy Stephens, Fernando Szew, Yoshinobu Tsuji, Jennifer Westin

Producer David Ariniello, Shrihari Sathe, Eric Schultz, Kelly Thomas

Writer Jamie Sisley

Editor Alan Canant

Cinematographer Alejandro Mejía

Music Ben Sollee

Cast Wyatt Oleff, Fin Argus, Chrissy Metz

Closed Captions Closed captions are not available for this screening.

Audio Description Audio description is not available for this screening.

American Sign Language (ASL) Interpretation American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation is not currently scheduled for this event. For more information about ASL interpretation at our events, e-mail ADA@SFFilm.org.