Emerging Visionaries

Returning to London’s BFI Southbank is the BFI Future Film Festival, now in its 11th edition. Aimed at encouraging emerging young filmmakers, this four-day extravaganza promises to be the brightest and biggest yet, with 60 different events being held. Ticket prices are just £12 and the festival is open to 16-25 year-olds – ideal for anyone considering a career in the film industry after leaving education.

So what’s involved? Featuring interactive masterclasses, industry workshops, screenings and Q&A sessions, the festival promises to cover the breadth and depth of the film industry, everything from animation to documentaries to fiction features to experimental fare. In other words, whatever your tastes, it’s got you covered.

Better still, there will be British film industry pros on hand to dispense their wisdom and experience. Included will be masterclasses and keynote speeches from award-winning director Athina Rachel Tsangari (Chevalier), editor Joe Bini (We Need To Talk About Kevin), producers Robyn Slovo (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and Loran Dunn (The Pig Child), writer-director Kate Herron (Smear, which screened at ASFF 2017) and VICE UK’s digital programming executive Eloise King.

The festival also offers a chance for young filmmakers to showcase their work. This year over 2,000 submissions from across the UK and abroad were received, the best of which are nominated for the BFI Future Film Awards. Set to be announced on February 15th, there is £12,000 worth of prizes up for grabs, with the awards split across several categories, recognising experimental shorts, new talent, and best short films for filmmakers aged 16-18 and 19-25. There are also an additional two international awards with support from The London School of English.

With the shorts divided into thematic programmes each day, ticket holders will be given the chance to see the nominated films alongside other notable works submitted this year. Among the programmes on show is ‘Female Portraits’, a series of shorts documenting struggles female protagonists face. The festival will also be once again working with S.O.U.L – a foundation that celebrates and connects ethnic filmmakers – to present one of the events in the programme. For anyone with ambitions in film, this might be the best £12 you spend all year.

The BFI Future Film Festival runs from 15 February to 18 February at the BFI Southbank. Find out more.

James Mottram

1. Trailer for Kate Herron’s Smear.