New Cross + Deptford Free Film Festival – coming soon!

The Free Film Festivals season is definitely underway.

As a volunteer for the New Cross + Deptford Free Film Festival, I have been getting excited seeing the big audiences and packed out venues on the Instagram feed for Camberwell’s festival, which finished last week.  Ours is getting closer now.  Can’t quite believe it, but the launch night Friday Night Fever, when we will be screening Saturday Night Fever and then having a 70’s disco afterwards at Deptford’s newest venue Number Three London, is in three weeks’ time.  Better dig out the wide lapels and platforms, but be prepared to join the waiting list here if you haven’t already got your ticket.

It takes a lot of planning and a lot of meetings to get a film festival from a nice idea to a brilliant film-filled reality.  The discussions about whether we can afford portaloos, the calculations about how much beer to buy, sometimes you forget that at the heart of the festival is the programme of films. It can be a tense time wondering exactly which events are going to come off, but somehow every year an eclectic programme comes together.  Thus the magic of a local film festival and a committed core team of organisers! The beauty of this festival is that anyone is welcome to turn up with an idea and receive help to execute it. You will get technical support and helpful guidelines from the festival organisers, along with promotion on the social networks, but it’s basically your gig.

As for my highlights, I always look forward to our two big, pedal-powered outdoor events: this year we are showing Guardians of the Galaxy at Fordham Park which takes place on the first Saturday, 25th April, and the classic 1939 Wizard of Oz at Telegraph Hill Upper Park on 2nd May.  Cross your fingers for kind weather! There is also the YouTube cat compilation film which was inspired by the Minneapolis Internet Cat Video Festival, link here, which has been sold out many times over, and which I know I won’t get near to seeing. I, a confirmed cataholic, am totally intrigued by this idea and by the huge success of such videos!  For kids we also have Paddington showing at the Shaftesbury Christian Centre on Frankham Street, and Frozen Singalong at Deptford Lounge. Deptford Lounge is showing a whole ream of films from 27th April; I am going to try and make it along on 29th April when they are converting their upstairs hall into the gym from Carrie, to screen the original 1976 film. Scary but good!

The festival is a great excuse to use new and different venues in New Cross and Deptford. This year’s festival allows us the chance to nosey around a few new locations. We are really pleased to be holding our launch party at Number Three London, which is a new space on Creekside run by the same people behind the Big Red Pizza Bus, and which is currently hiring for use as a gallery, club space, recording studio and general sociable place. Also, for the first time in many years, we have a cinema in the Borough of Lewisham, Deptford Cinema, which of course is getting involved in the festival. I really fancy seeing Barber Shop City, a documentary showing a day in the life of three London barber shops.  You can also have a look in The Field, 385 Queens Road, which is an experiment in creating a new institution of the commons, for local, self-organised research, education and action. They are showing two films, Asylum from the Madness and Sí Se Puede!, both with relevant guest speakers and panel discussions, including the director of the former.

Sanford Housing Co-op as usual plays an important part in the festival. They are hosting a series of events entitled Ways Out: Unfolding The Topography Of The Possible, inviting you to seek ways out of the labyrinth, investigate alternatives to generic Capitalism, expand your space for making free, independent and fertile choices. Come along and encounter people with the courage to act for a better world and think beyond self-imposed limits. There are no limits!

The festival ends on a high note on Sunday 3rd May. Don Letts, legendary DJ, musician and filmmaker, will be talking about his documentary film The Clash: Westway To The World followed by a DJ set at the Job Centre in Deptford.  It’s the Sunday of the Bank Holiday weekend, so we trust you will join us to celebrate another fun and very free film festival in our beloved corner of the world.

For full listings please see the main festival website at this link and keep up with what’s happening on Facebook or Twitter.

Here’s our promo film, produced by Rosie Oliver for Tickertape Productions.

So what are you coming to watch?