The Foyle Film Festival, founded in Derry, Ireland in 1987, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. The festival is set to kick off today and run to Saturday, November 25.
The Irish FIlm and Television Network stated that the festival’s theme this year is “Milestone” as it hits the quarter century mark.
“The initial idea was just to have a yearly film festival, I don’t think there was a plan that it could sustain itself,” Jim Curran, a producer and film professor at the University of Ulster, told the source. “There was a need for a platform for independent film and documentaries and videos to have some sort of outlet.”
Although the festival is considered to be relatively small, it’s still Oscar affiliated, and recognized by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) and the British International Film Awards (BIFA). This allows those accepted by the festival to be eligible for awards granted by these organizations, which gives it a wide appeal to serious filmmakers.
This will surely increase the festival’s level of attendance as artists from all over Ireland and the United Kingdom vie for a spot in such a recognized event. Additionally, this talent may draw in many attendees who want to get close to the action, especially as Oscar-winning director Andrea Arnold will be in attendance and feature film actor Martin McCann. Furthermore, Ray Winstone and Mat Whitecross, major Irish talent, will be premiering their new feature film “Ashes” on opening night.
Although the festival is screening films at three different locations, it may benefit from investing in an outdoor movie screen, which can be set up in local parks. This method of viewing can allow for an increased turnout and bring together the entire surrounding community.