Inspired by Ideas: ASFF Day One

300 films. 5 days. 18 venues. The seventh edition of the BAFTA Recognised Aesthetica Short Film Festival opens today in York, transforming the historic city into a cultural landscape. The 2017 edition is the largest to date, offering five days of visually arresting and conceptually captivating shorts.

Wednesday is the perfect day to introduce yourself to the festival and orientate yourself with the city before our programme of masterclasses, panel discussions and networking events begins. Our Youth Programme is the first event to start the day, with schools from the city voting for their favourite film from a selection of Family Friendly screenings; the winner will be announced on Sunday as part of our Closing Ceremony.

Open to all festival pass holders, the first of our Morning Coffee sessions, which have been expanded and developed for our 2017 festival, return to City Screen Basement, 11:00-12:00. Hear from emerging and established practitioners about the integral nature of screenwriting. Developing scripts into compelling dialogue is one of the key elements necessary to any successful piece of work, whether it be drama or comedy. Join our dynamic team of filmmakers as they answer any questions you might have about writing for short format.

Further to this, a new event for ASFF takes the form of a unique and relaxed networking environment with fellow filmmakers and aficionados. Everyday, starting today, from 15:00-16:00, City Screen basement provides the opportunity for a laid-back hour to talk with those who have shaped the festival selection for 2017. This is your chance to build lasting connections, discuss collaborations, and plan the day ahead.

For the first time, screenings have also been curated not only by genre, but by theme, with each reel reflecting upon the contemporary condition through a range of emotions, everyday phenomena and universal tropes. Each film belongs to one of 12 colour-coded categories, becoming part of a wider spectrum that touches on the entirety of human emotion. Today, highlights include Comedy 1: Modern Families, 21:30-22:30 at Yorkshire Museum and Thriller 1: Love Me Tender, 16:45-18:30 at National Centre for Early Music.

Cinema Bambino also returns, kicking off today at City Screen at 13:30 with the Documentary reel: Capturing Souls. Returning for a second year, these specially tailored screenings for parents and carers of babies from 0 months to two years old. As an inclusive festival, we have organised showings in a relaxed and welcoming environment where you can park your buggy and enjoy great film.

Closing the day, and raising the curtain on ASFF’s seventh anniversary edition is the Opening Night at York’s own riverside arthouse cinema and live performance venue, City Screen. The event features a dynamic taster of top films from the festival’s Official Selection, chosen by our Festival Director, Cherie Federico. These unique and connective films will be on display to the general public as part of the Opening Night showcase, tomorrow at York Theatre Royal from 10:30-11:30. The presentation is a great introduction to ASFF for first-time festival visitors – a chance to see in one screening the breadth of films on offer.

For more information about screenings, read our full programme online:

Tickets are still available at the Festival Hub, based at Visit York. For more information:

1. Opening Night 2015. Courtesy of Jim Poyner.