Plymouth Film Festival returns this May Bank Holiday for a weekend of exclusive feature films, Director Q&As, and short film screenings, culminating in an awards ceremony on Sunday evening.
Also returning to the official jury panel are BA (Hons) Film Programme Leader Lucy Leake and BA (Hons) Film Lecturer John Sealey. With an unprecedented 650 entries to the festival, the organisers had a tough job on their hands to narrow down their official selection.
Lucy said, "The films were of such a high standard this year, and so varied in topic and style, that it was incredibly difficult to choose our top picks. For me, the most interesting category was the Student Film section, with some beautiful work ranging from a heartfelt coming-of-age story, to an over-the-top comedic love story featuring a goat, a pregnant woman and a kidnapping."
This year, alongside the usual screenings of world-class shorts, Plymouth Film Festival have an exciting festival first as it welcomes talented director Jerry J White III, who will be flying in from L.A. for an exclusive Q&A after a screening of his character led indie feature film, This is Us.
Festival organiser Ben Hancock said, ‘We're thrilled to be welcoming LA based feature film director Jerry J White III to the festival who will be giving audiences an insight into his directing process.’
Also screening at the festival is Doorkeep, directed by BA (Hons) Film graduate Jake Bench. Shot on traditional 16mm film, Jake explained how he came to develop his filmmaking process, "I saw film as a natural way of combining film and literature. That was what drove me to Plymouth College of Art to study filmmaking, there I was exposed to cinema for what it is, and I haven’t thought about doing anything else since."
"It's been really exciting to be part of the judging panel, the festival, which features global submissions, also highlights the strength of the film community in the South West including film students from the college."
– John Sealey, BA (Hons) Film Lecturer
The Plymouth Film Festival was founded in 2013 by Plymouth-based William Jenkins and Ben Hancock with the inaugural event held in May 2014 at the Plymouth Arts Centre. Initially established as a local festival it has rapidly grown to include both national and international films alongside some of the very best filmmakers based in the South West of England. The popularity of the festival has surpassed all expectations, and the programme continues to extend to meet demand.