Film fans are in for a treat later this month as the Ealing Film Festival comes to town, bringing a bit of red-carpet glamour with it as it moves into its new home at the Ealing Project in Ealing Broadway.
Now in its third year, the festival has grown rapidly since it began life in 2020, when its films had to be screened online due to lockdown restrictions at the height of the pandemic.
This year more than 300 films from over 40 countries were entered for the festival, with attendees having the chance to see some of the best at the event, which runs from Wednesday November 23 until Sunday November 27.
The event kicks off with student night on Wednesday 23, followed by an evening dedicated to horror films on November 24, attended by 70s Hammer star Madeline Smith along with David Creed and Mark Kenna from new British film company Bad Blood, which specialises in horror movies.
Saturday 26 is the day for sci-fi and fantasy fans, with some of this year’s films screened alongside an interview with writer and producer Ron Fogelman, while the evening is devoted to documentaries, with environmental films and movies shot on smartphone among those featured.
The festival will wrap up on Sunday 27th with an afternoon of comedy films followed by an evening of drama, before the event’s all-important awards are handed out. These will include the best film prize, as well as the People’s Choice award – with the movies also being screened online to allow viewers to vote for their favourite.
Festival director Peter Gould highlighted the excitement for new filmmakers whose work will be screened at the festival.
“It is a huge thrill for anyone trying to make their mark in the film industry. We are all aware of the major role Ealing has played in the development of British cinema and television,” he said. “Now we are shining a spotlight on a new generation.”
The event’s other director, Annemarie Flanagan, paid tribute to the challenge of launching a film festival during the pandemic – promising that this year’s event, in person, will be even bigger and better.
“We felt that creative people needed some encouragement after being confined to their homes, and they responded to the opportunity,” she said.
“That first festival may have been online, but filmmakers loved the idea of having a new platform for their work. Last year, as restrictions eased, we were able to put up a screen in a church hall. Now, with a brand-new cinema in Ealing, we can finally give people the full festival experience.”
The Ealing Film Festival takes place at the Ealing Project, Ealing Broadway Shopping Centre, from November 23-27. For more information including ticket prices, visit the official website at ealingfilmfestival.com