Actor Bill Nighy among guests as Screenplay line-up revealed

The programme for Shetland Arts’ Screenplay film festival has been announced, with legendary actor Bill Nighy set to make a trip to the isles.

Cinephiles will be spoilt for choice in the 11th annual instalment of the festival, with over 80 screenings and events arranged for the ten-day event – which runs from Friday, 25th August until Sunday, 3rd September.

Mr Nighy will take part in a Q&A session after a screening of his latest film The Limehouse Golem, a dark murder mystery set in Victorian England. The film opens nationally in the first weekend in September, when it screens in Shetland.

Rising star George MacKay will also be in attendance, participating in a Q&A session after a showing of LGBT comedy-drama Pride and introducing a sing-along screening of Sunshine on Leith.

Co-curators Mark Kermode, Linda Ruth Williams and Kathy Hubbard have also brought together a now traditional collection of local productions, Scandinavian features and films from emerging directors.

In the Scandinavian ‘Look North’ section there are films from Sweden, Denmark and Finland, as well as a film shot closer to home – in Eshaness. Among those there is a documentary about the whaling tradition of Faroe and a film based on the true story of Finnish boxer Olli Maki – which was awarded the prestigious Un Certain Regard Prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

The regular selection of locally made short films will be screened in the festival’s annual Home Made section as will longer efforts from more experienced local filmmakers. JJ Jamieson’s documentary about the history of the North Star Cinema will feature, as will an effort from film poets Roseanne Watt and Bruce Eunson.

A new ‘Fur and Feathers’ section will feature films about animals, including the imaginatively named Donkeyote, which is being billed as the Festival Director’s Choice.

Screenplay’s tradition of supporting emerging film makers will continue with a number of first feature directors visiting the festival either in person or by Skype for screenings of films which have not yet secured distribution deals.

Outside of the festival’s Mareel base there will be film showings in Hillswick, Whalsay and Mid Yell, as well as events in schools set to reach over 1000 pupils.

Tuesday, 29th August will see a special 3D screening of Terminator 2: Judgement Day, showing for one night only across the UK.

At a programme launch event in Mareel last night Mrs Hubbard said that Screenplay continued for “the reasons that we have always done it”.

“We do it because film, like any other art form, introduces us to new ways of seeing and thinking”, she said.


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