By Kim McKenna
For 10 years the Glasgow Film Festival has been celebrating cinematic extraordinaire from around the world; and with a lot to live up to after the success of the 2013 Festival, this year hopes to be the best one yet.
GFF offers a huge range of events, including the Youth Film Festival for schools where pupils and teachers from nursery, primary and secondary schools can participate in a number of screenings and workshops, in a bid to inspire and motivate the youth of today. A Music and Film festival is also held in Glasgow’s Arches, following a programme of live music events and ‘Rockumentaries’, celebrating the imperative alliance between music and film.
The main festival will open its doors on Thursday 20th February, kicking off with a showing of Wes Anderson’s film, The Grand Budapest Hotel – tipped to be the first Oscar contender for 2015 already! It will close on Sunday 2nd March, showcasing the Scottish film Under the Skin – an adaption of Michael Faber’s novel of the same name. The film stars Glasgow’s very own Paul Brannigan alongside Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson, as she prowls the streets of Glasgow in a white van in a bid to seductively lure unsuspecting male victims to their bitter end.
Brannigan shot to fame in Ken loach’s BAFTA award winning film Angel’s Share, and it is no secret that the opportunity changed his life dramatically. Brought up on the rough streets of Glasgow’s East-End, Brannigan was exposed to a life of crime and drugs; something that he is glad to have put behind him: “Since becoming an actor my life has changed dramatically, I’m working all the time and feel more confident than ever. It has also boosted the work I do with kids due to my profile which is now allowing me to work up and down the country.” Paul pays a lot of gratitude to the Scottish Film Industry for changing his life, and hopes he can help do the same for others that may find themselves in the same position as he was: “I’m very excited for this new life I’ve been given the chance to have, and I hope I can give other people who were in my position the opportunity to realise that they can do the same.” Brannigan’s inspiring story is akin to the explorations of the Youth Film festival, and he hopes people will be motivated by this new lease of life. Ticket’s to the Closing Gala and viewing of Under the Skin can be purchased from just £10, and include access to the closing party – an event not to be missed!
GFF does not just offer film and music based events, it also has something for the gamers out there too! Glasgow’s Robert Florence, co-creator of Scottish comedy sketch show Burnistoun, will be hosting a number of games-based events as well as showcasing his very own horror film The House of Him, which he laughs about filming slasher scenes while his mum watched Corrie in the next room. Robert’s gaming events include 48 Hour Games, Rab’s Videogames Empty and a Story Writing for Games discussion, to name a few. A comical Geeks vs Gamers Superquiz will also take place, displaying a panel of comedians including Still Game’s Greg Hemphill and a number of comic book kingpins, as they battle it out in a war of geeking and gaming knowledge. The smack-down will be hosted by comedian Billy Kirkwood.
Glasgow Film Festival is a truly exhilarating event and something that film, music and gaming addicts alike will not want to miss! A great day out for those who enjoy experiencing the culture of the media industry. Tickets for the mass of events can be purchased from the Glasgow Film Festival website. 2014 looks set to be its biggest and best year yet!