The Future Film Festival returns to London next week and the traditionally weekend-long session is now expanding to five days to pack in more masterclasses for audiences to enjoy. For its ninth year running, the BFI will bring London audiences screenings and masterclasses in an effort to inspire and develop aspiring young filmmakers. This season has been programmed into three distinct sections: Storytelling, Production and Craft Skills and The Business of Film.
For the first time ever, the first day of the festival will be entirely free to the public. It’s a special year for the festival because of this inclusive aspect, which was inspired by this year’s record number of film submissions, totaling over 1,400.
The Future Films Awards is also bigger than previous years to recognize the array of talent. It will encompass ten awards, including prizes for Best Short, Best Micro-Short, Best Experimental Short and the BFI RAWawards, which offers the winner £5,000 and a year’s worth of mentoring from select members of the film industry, yet to be named.
Other anticipated features of the festival include “The James Bay Film Project,” a session held at the festival that will discuss how the award-winning singer-songwriter has helped support newcomers to the film industry via the global platform, Talenthouse. The project, which was launched last year, encouraged filmmakers to submit 1-2 minute shorts using James Bay’s album, “Chaos And The Calm” as their muse. In the spirit of short narratives, director Patrick Lawrence has turned his trailer for “Lionheart” into a 10-15 minute film, which is set to premiere at the festival’s close on Sunday, February 21.
It also marks an important year for women at this year’s Future Film Festival as masterclasses will be lead by director Sarah Gavron (“Suffragette”), writer-director Desiree Akhavan (“Appropriate Behaviour”), producer Faye Ward (“Jane Eyre”), costume designer Jane Petrie (“’71”, “Fish Tank”) and editor Jinx Godfrey (“The Theory of Everything”).
Filmmakers eager to participate in a meet and greet session during the week’s festival are in luck. Ticket holders will have the chance to attend a luncheon in the Creative Skillset’s festival lounge. Notable attendees will include BFI Film Academy members and BFI Film Aademy alumni. Euroscript will also offer their guidance to filmmakers in the development stages of their scripts.
For other information about the festival and to buy tickets, click here.