We do culture and creativity extremely well in Manchester. We love art, we love music and we love to be entertained. We also see more than our fair share of drizzle, so we’re pretty adept at being entertained indoors. Through the 3 universities, we have a wealth of talent pumping into the media profession and now even the behemoth BBC has lifted its London-centric anchor and docked down in the shiny Media City harbour. We’ve even got a bevvy of picture houses – from your big, proper, blockbuster style Odeons, to the cultural, cool Corner House and even a few pop up cinemas throughout the year, such as yellow deck-chaired Screenfields in summer.
So it may come as a surprise that… until now – 4– 7th October 2012 – we had no film festival of our own. That has now changed courtesy of the brilliant efforts of local film director, Simon Powell, whose sterling efforts have brought us the inaugural Greater Manchester Film Festival! Betwixt the Printworks and Media City UK, GMFF presented a host of events and films for our viewing pleasure. It showcased an array of independent movie talent from exclusive premieres to vintage archive footage.
Through the magic medium of twitter, even the busy people of BAFTA got in touch and got involved. I had the pleasure of attending the BAFTA best 8 short films tour today, a cracking compilation of mini movies: from sick stock-motion horror, through foreign politicised heart-wrenchers to uplifting funky animation.
I was pleased to see the festival programme included features from local emerging talent as well as family friendly events, proving there’s a lot to be excited about with the future of this festival. The inaugural GMFF was a resounding hit; as long as rain drops fall on Manchester, I’m sure its success will continue.