Movie fans across Scotland, UK and Europe have eagerly awaited the twelfth annual Glasgow Film Festival, which is set to have cinema aficionado’s merged (and in some cases handcuffed) to their seats from February 17th – 28th 2016 in a host of Glasgow’s top cinema venues around the city.
In partnership with Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, Creative Scotland, and BFI the Glasgow Film Festival is lights, camera, action! as the GFF opens with the UK premiere of Hail, Caesar! by the Coen Brothers, and closes with the premiere of the Oscar nominated, Anomalisa by Charlie Kaufman.
Glasgow Film Festival brings 174 exclusive screenings, world premieres and old-favourites to fans, with movies being shown in Glasgow’s top cinema venues across the city; from the niche Glad Café, high-profile Cineplex’s like IMAX to the legendary Barrowlands Ballroom music venue. The only struggle fans will have is whether they have enough popcorn or not to last the festival’s marathon of fantastic cinema.
GFF will also be featuring its trademarked, popup cinema which is ready to make use of the city’s most unusual venues. The Glasgow Film Festival, in addition to hosting movies, is also to be attended by some of the most respected names in modern cinema, including Richard Gere who will be supporting the UK premiere of his new film Time Out Of Mind (Sun 28 Feb), in which he plays a homeless man, who is possibly suffering from mental illness and adrift in New York. Actress Natalie Dormer, best known for her role as Margaery Tyrell in HBO’s Game of Thrones and as Cressida in The Hunger Games, will walk the red carpet for the UK premiere of The Forest (Thu 25 Feb).
Renowned director Ben Wheatley will also be in attendance for the Scottish premiere of High-Rise (Thu 18 Feb), a high-profile adaptation of JG Ballard’s dystopian novel starring Tom Hiddleston and Sienna Miller. Also from Game of Thrones; Hannah Murray appears to support Bridgend, a thoughtful look at the suicide ‘epidemic’ experienced by the small Welsh town in the mid-2000s.
The festival will also host veteran arthouse director Peter Greenaway and stuntman Vic Armstrong who will be taking part in some ‘in person’ events discussing their long careers in the movie industry. This year’s festival is described by showrunners as ‘exciting, innovative, audience-focused’ and with the programme bursting at the seams with first time showings, exclusive screenings, free events and movie-making classes for budding directors it’s clear to see that 2016 is a promising and ambitious year for the Glasgow Film Festival.
Some of the highlights from the fantastic cinema programme includes Demolition, the latest film from Dallas Buyers Club director Jean-Marc Vallée, which stars Jake Gyllenhaal; The Forest, shown during FrightFest, in which Natalie Dormer battles malevolent spirits in a Japanese forest inspired by Aokigahara (commonly known as the ‘suicide forest’) and the world premiere of Where You’re Meant To Be starring Aidan Moffat – a movie which embarks on a folk music tinged conquest throughout Scotland. This world premiere screening will also be the first ever feature length film to be shown at Glasgow’s legendary Barrowland Ballroom and follows a spectacular live performance.
If reels upon reels of exclusive movies aren’t enough to convince you that the GFF is more than worth the time and money, remember it’s more than just a movie festival. As well as a packed programme of brilliant movies, GFF2016 will also be heralding its Audience Awards once again – a shortlist of ten movies from first or second time directors chosen by the festival programme team and voted on by the audience.
Created in tandem with the GFF’s Pioneer Strand and sponsored by Scottish Power; the award was devised to celebrate the festival’s reputation for recognising future masters of cinema and to bring greater profile to some of the best talent in the world. Some front runners for the award are: 16 Years Till Summer, a cathartic documentary focusing on the tale of Uisdean after he served sixteen years in prison for killing his friend, which was nominated for a BAFTA Scotland award and Miles Ahead, Don Cheadle’s stylish capturing of the life of swaggering jazz legend, Miles Davis – also featuring Ewan McGregor.
The Audience Awards are a unique and refreshing celebration of new-coming talent, which gives aspiring film-makers the recognition they deserve. However, while new movies are exciting and everyone wants to be the first to see the latest blockbusting flick, what’s also just as exciting and important is reconnecting with the movies which made us love cinema to begin with.
That’s a major focus for Glasgow Film Festival this year. GFF2016 will be showing some ‘classic’ movies among the high-profile releases in its trademark popup cinema style, described as an atmospheric, one off ‘total cinema’ experience hosted in some of Glasgow’s most obscure and best loved venues.
While screenings of Raiders of the Lost Ark and Silence of the Lambs at Kelvingrove Museum are sold out, festival goers still have the chance to attend a special, unique screening of the Nicholas Cage classic, Con Air. Held at a top secret, undisclosed location fans will be given the inmate experience as they are collected at GFT, assigned a uniform, handcuffed to a partner and shuffle onto a prison bus headed towards the secret location (Thu 18th Feb).
As well as the convict experience; fans will also have the chance to experience a little bit of Shakespeare with Baz Lurhmann’s unbeaten adaptation of Romeo & Juliet which turns twenty in 2016. GFF will turn city-centre mansion Trades Hall into the Capulet mansion costume ball on 27 Feb, complete with fishtanks, angel wings and cocktails in poison vials. Whether you’re wearing Hawaiian shirts, Cuban heels or full drag, fancy dress is mandatory!
Dripping with content, packed with stars and full of potential this year’s Glasgow Film Festival is already shaping up to be the best yet in its twelve year history. Glasgow’s Council Leader, Frank McAveety showed his support for the festival, saying: “The calibre of this year’s programme reinforces our credentials as a world-class cultural destination and leading cinema city.”
If you’re an avid movie fan, casual cinema goer, budding director or just looking for something to do in February then make sure you do not miss the most exciting film festival in the world!