WIRRAL International Film Festival is returning for a fifth year in November – and organisers want your films.
The independent festival, the brainchild of Wirral producers Alan Veste and Phil Bimpson, was established in 2008 with the aim of providing a showcase for the work of the borough’s up and coming filmmakers.
Over the last five years the event has gone from strength to strength, moving to a bigger location and forging links with Latina, Wirral’s twin town in Italy.
This year’s festival will take place at the TA Centre in Oxton from November 12 to 17.
Alan said: “The festival gives a platform to filmmakers who might not ordinarily get a chance to have their work shown to the public.
“They can make contacts and then hopefully get the encouragement they need to go on and do more. It gives ordinary film-makers the chance to learn about the business.
“Most film festivals charge a submission fee but that doesn’t mean they’ll show your film.
“Our festival is free and we aim to show every film that we’re sent. It’s also free admission and filmmakers can bring as many people as they want.
“It’s always been like that and it always will be like that. “
Silver screen enthusiasts can enter efforts covering a broad range of genres, from documentary, short film, music video and animation to feature films.
There is also a category for under 16s.
The only criteria is that either the entrant or their film must relate in some way to Wirral.
Alan said: “New filmmakers are coming through all the time, especially the youngsters, and the quality goes up every year.
“The nice thing about the festival is that we get the professionals and the amateurs meeting each other and bouncing ideas off each other.”
The schedule for this year’s festival is still being finalised but it is expected to include specialist and themed nights, with gongs for the best submissions in each category.
Last year included a tribute to late Wallasey filmmaker Alan Clarke and an Italian night to celebrate Wirral’s links with Latina.
Members of the Latina Film Commission are again expected to attend in support of the event.
The connection between Wirral and its Italian counterpart has inspired scores of filmmakers over the festival’s five years – with one even travelling to Italy to make a documentary about Latina and how it came to be twinned with the borough.
Organisers are again looking for sponsors for the year’s festival and the trophies in each of the award categories.
For more information about how to get involved with this year’s festival, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The festival website, www.wirralfilmfestival.com is under construction and will be updated with more information soon.