Crowds of film-enthusiasts headed over to Barnes this weekend to attend the launch of Barnes Film Festival, an environmentally-themed three-day film festival in Southwest London.
Local MP and former mayoral candidate, Zac Goldsmith, was called upon to speak at the launch party on Friday, which took place in the brand new H20 building at the London Wetlands Centre. Guests were invited to take part in the Green Carpet Challenge and wear sustainable clothing, with prizes presented to the best-dressed.
Goldsmith even found himself in the running when he confessed, ‘By sheer coincidence, I came here in a jacket which was my dad’s who died 20 years ago … This suit was crafted before I was born: if that ain’t sustainable I don’t know what is!”
Following a star-studded launch party, the Festival hosted a full day of screenings, film-making workshops and a film-making competition, showcasing young talent from across London and the UK. The shortlisted films, submitted by film-makers age 25 and under, were screened in front of a panel of judges from the TV and film industry: Nick Mason Pearson (Director of Corporate Comms Public Affairs at the BFI), Charlotte Macleod (playwright and founder of The Script Factory), Rayna Campbell (actor and director), Anthony Quinn (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art), Lisa Burge (Olympic Studios, Empire Design and Film Four) and Rob Shearman (scriptwriter for Doctor Who).
Screenings of award-winning films and documentaries included Across Antarctica, featuring a live Skype interview with the film’s director, Stéphanie Gicquel, The Beautiful Game, followed by a live Q&A with the film’s director, Victor Buhler, and The True Cost, presented by film producer, Lucy Siegel. Among the workshops, highlights included a ‘Sound Effects’ session with School of Noise Foley and sound technician, Mark Williamson, and ‘Comedy School’, led by Laura Lawson of the School of Comedy.
Lucky winners of the film-making competition were presented with amazing prizes on the final day of the Festival, with Liam Harris, maker of the animation Perched taking home a 2.5K Black Magic camera. The Festival closed at the Olympic Studios in Barnes with a film-themed pub quiz.
Festival Director and film-maker, Samuel Cullis, was ‘overwhelmed’ by the Festival’s success. ‘I’d like to thank everybody who took part – those who entered their films in the competition, those who came to the workshops and film screenings, and everyone who offered their enthusiasm and support. It’s been a hugely rewarding experience, and I’m already excited to discover more film-making talent at the Festival next year!”