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Nottingham International Film Festival

6 October 16 words: Harry Wilding
You'll have square eyes from all the films you'll be watching this month
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You’ve chosen Savoy Cinema for the festival…
It’s nice to work with independent cinemas, they tend to be a lot more supportive. It’s been refurbished and the history of it being the oldest cinema in Nottingham is also really good.

Why Nottingham?
We know there’s Mayhem and the Microfilm Festival here, but it’s a different kind of offering. Notts is a very artsy city, so we thought it would be something that you would really enjoy.

Did you look into other cities?
We started a festival in Oxford back in May – there was no film festival at all in there.

How did the Manchester Film Festivals go?
We had our first in July 2015 and the second in March this year. Both went really well – the second one grew considerably on the first. If you look at somewhere like Raindance, that’s what we’re aspiring to do – build the audience year on year.

What made you want to organise festivals?
We have a filmmaking background: producing and writing. We made a very low budget film together about four years ago, and that did the festival circuit before picking up distribution in the States. There wasn’t a festival in Manchester we could submit to, which seemed strange. With our experience of other festivals, we thought we could do something with a bit of integrity.

So you will be looking to make the Nottingham one annual?
Yes. Manchester will be the showcase event, with Nottingham and Oxford as sister festivals to be a platform for similar types of films.

Did you speak to any Notts-heads beforehand?
We just made sure that we weren’t stepping on any toes – like, Mayhem, is full of feature films but it was very much a different template. I think that the three festivals happening in October all complement each other, there’s no competition.

What can we expect at the festival?
Two short film programmes, five dramatic features and two documentary features. And then an awards ceremony – best short, best feature, best director and so on. We’re also doing a launch party at Das Kino on the Friday 7 October to launch the festival and show off some trailers of the films and generally have a bit of a party – all free.

Have you got quite a mixed bag of films?
It is all about these filmmakers coming to these cities and sharing their films, so we can create that community across the festivals. We got a hell of a lot from outside of the UK – the States, a great one from Austria, Japan, Latvia, Luxembourg – a good broad spectrum of world cinema as well as some more mainstream films. We try and cater for as big a scope as possible.

Any Nottingham entries?
A couple of documentaries. We like to support the local films, but they have to be up to scratch, we don’t put them in for the sake of it. If the craft and quality is there, it’ll always be considered.

Nottingham International Film Festival, Saturday 8 - Sunday 9 October. Individual, day and weekend tickets available. Launch Party, Das Kino, Friday 7 October, 7.30pm, free.

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