Programme & venues
Official Selection – competition
The Festival panel, made up of film professionals, film enthusiasts, academics and lecturers in film, and festival staff shall short list feature films and film shorts in categories designated by narrative and documentary. Films selected for competition will be from first and second time filmmakers. We do not operate a premier status for films in competition. Note: a first or second time features director will be eligible even if they have made film shorts in the past.
The Festival shall pay homage to the legacy of cinema by screening the debut and second film of celebrated directors (and actors, who have directed films), many of which are screen classics. Invites have gone to the same directors to introduce their films and to take audience Q&A afterwards.
Foreign language films (with English sub-titles) may be submitted for consideraton for official selection to the Festival.
But, the Festival also nominates one country (every year) for our official “Country Focus”. In 2019, Festival organisers have selected Poland for its “Country Focus” segment of the Festival. Four films by exciting Polish directors have been selected for screening out of competition, introducing these films to new audiences and re-acquainting Polish audiences, who live in and around Cheltenham, with films that reflect their heritage.
The Festival plans to screen films out of competition that have a special status – it may be the premier of a new feature film by a well-known director or it may be the directorial debut of a well-known and celebrated actor.
Complementary to the screenings, the Festival is organising a series of master classes, panel discussions, lectures/talks, Q&A with film industry executives, film craftsmen/women such as cinematographer, producers, directors and financiers as well as media, historians, academics and lecturers in film. And, the Festival will host a series of receptions and parties, include a closing night gala awards dinner.
The Festival will use venues across town: Cineworld, Parabola Arts Centre, Wilson Centre, Princess Hall, Manor By The Lake, University of Gloucestershire for screenings and events with plans to use hotels and pubs across the town, by way of variety, and to create more intimacy for interaction between audiences and speakers.