Film festival includes classics The Searchers and Local Hero

SHETLAND Arts’ second film festival, Screen­play 2008, will open on 4th September with a special screening of Dr Who and the Sontaran Strategy, introduced by director Douglas MacKinnon who will be making his return to the festival.

The Time Lord and the “scary baked potato aliens” are the first in a four day line-up of heroes and villains, the theme on which this year’s festival is based.

Screenplay boasts three highly-regarded curators this year – critic Mark Kermode, Professor Linda Ruth Williams and Royal College of Art rector Christopher Frayling. All have visited Shetland before. Mark and Linda curated last year’s festival and Christopher was here for the Tall Ships Race in 1999, where he gave an illustrated lecture on maritime movies.

Each curator has been asked to select films based on the theme, and their choices so far mean that Shetland film lovers will be able to see The Vanishing (the original rather than the unsatisfactory re-make) and The Searchers (arguably the best Western ever made, starring the legendary John Wayne).

Linda was keen that we should see our share of villainesses and heroines, so watch out for Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction and 101 Dalmatians, two films in which she plays the baddie, but for very different audiences.

The cowboy keeps appearing throughout the festival. Mark will introduce the recent film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford while Christopher will be giving a special illustrated lecture on the western genre, followed by a screening of Once Upon a Time in the West.

There will be the occasional Local Hero too, starting with the classic film of that name which, while filmed on the west coast of Scotland, was inspired by the story of Shetland and the Sullom Voe Terminal.

Along with such famous offerings, there will be short works created by local film-makers scattered through the programme.

If any film-makers would like the opportunity to have their work included, Shetland Arts is looking for short films of no more than 10 minutes duration, preferably (but not exclusively) on the heroes and villains theme. Phone Kathy Hubbard or Donald Anderson for details on (01595) 743843.

The festival will run from 4th to 7th September at the Garrison Theatre, coinciding with the book festival Wordplay 2008 which will be at Islesburgh. Details of the full programme will be in the local media later this summer.

Shetland Arts Development Agency will receive £156,803 from the Scottish Arts Council towards the cost of foundation funding for 2008/09 to support its role in promoting and developing the arts in Shetland and assisting individual practitioners to achieve their creative potential.


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