A new student film festival is in town! Introducing Film In Flux

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By Katya Spiers, Film & TV Digital Editor

In the few days post-April 12, life — for a lot of us — has regained a semblance of normality. For some, though, the true recommencement of reality starts not with pubs and gyms, but at the cinema. Enter Film In Flux, a new student-led film festival bringing you a three-day, in-person (!) program of films, talks and festivities, taking place in the Winston Theatre from June 8 to 10.

With free tickets and a chance to support our peers, Film In Flux is a final-year university project run by four graduating students who want to give their colleagues a heroic send-off after what has been a tumultuous year.

I spoke to Maddy Raven, one of the festival’s producers, to find out just what we can expect from the festival.

Film In Flux is open to submissions from film students in their third year at the University of Bristol, who can submit work made during any of their three years at the university — from first forays to expertly crafted projects. This work can take any form, too: bedroom shorts produced over lockdown, university assignments, or even written presentations and proposals for film projects that haven’t been able to go ahead during the pandemic. Anything you’re proud of, Film In Flux wants to showcase it!

‘It’s something the university has been trying to get off the ground for a few years in a row now, but we’re the first group to really put the program into action,’ Maddy told me.

Maddy, who has previously screened short film programs at home in Margate, crowdfunded the money to get Film In Flux up and running. ‘Plans were initially being discussed to showcase the films digitally,’ she explained. ‘But after the year we’ve had, who wants another Zoom meeting?’

Ruby Ballantyne in Bobby by Maddy Raven and Rosanna Lloyd | Courtesy of Bobby, Film In Flux

The festival’s organisers — Kat, Cam, Maddy and Ollie — have taken it upon themselves to turn this opportunity into an exciting and engaging physical event, with social distancing measures in place to make sure that everything runs smoothly and safely.

The festival includes a series of guest talks from the likes of Mark Herman, who directed The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas (2008) and Brassed Off (1996); Sarah Smither, a camera operator and director of photography whose recent work includes Talia (2021) and Sacrilege (2021); and Rob Holder, a director, writer and producer. ‘They’ll be discussing the ins and outs of working in the film industry, as well as acting as the jury for our awards ceremony,’ Maddy explains.

‘The names for the awards were voted on by our peers. Best Cinematography is called the Roger Deakins award; Best Performance is the Daniel Kaluuya award. After being decided on by our panel, the winners will receive trophies to keep as a memento of their time in Bristol.’

Maddy explains, ‘It’s been a lot harder to get people engaged over the past year when everyone’s spending hours online all day. But we’re excited to be working towards an in-person event at the end of it all.’

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University of Bristol alum Laura Marcus wins Best Writer at the BFI Future Film Festival

Film In Flux follows the pattern of student and alumni film festival success that has come out of the University of Bristol in recent years: Minute Made, a new festival celebrating student shorts in Bristol; The Indoors Project, a festival set up by former student Daniel Sved, screening animation and shorts from around the UK; and Bristol alum Laura Marcus, whose film The Massive F*cking Bender won Best Writer at the BFI Future Film Festival earlier this year.

Whether you’re a self-professed cinephile wanting to dive into the world of student film, or just looking for a reason to get out of the house, Film In Flux is certainly something to look forward to.

Featured: Film In Flux


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