London Film School has strong showing of current and former graduates at the LFF | The BFI Film Festival runs from 4th to 15th October
London Film School continues a strong year on the festival circuit with seven films by students and alumni featuring in the BFI 2017 London Film Festival- opening next week.
LAWS OF THE GAME, the final year film directed by LFS graduate Aegina Brahim, has been shortlisted for the festival’s Short Film Award, the 14th festival official selection the film has received. Based on the true story of the Surinamese referee Deborah Zebeda, the film has won 5 Awards and was nominated for best producer at the Underwire festival. In addition to Brahim, director of photography JP Garcia, writer by Radu Ghelbereu, editor by Ricardo Saraiva and assistant director Faidra Tsolina are all recent LFS graduates.
Two films by LFS alumni feature in the festival’s comedic shorts programme GITS AND SHIGGLES. Benjamin Cleary (2011*), who won an Oscar for his 2015 short STUTTERER, and fellow graduate Tj O'Grady (2010*) will be showing their film WAVE about a man who awakes from a coma speaking a fully formed but baffling language. Benjamin Bee’s (2015*) MORDECHAI is a touching tale of a reunion between two brothers estranged by religion and life choices.
Carla Simón (2014*) has been shortlisted for the Sutherland Award for best First Feature for SUMMER 1993. This outstanding debut from the Catalan filmmaker depicts the journey of a young girl in the aftermath of her mother’s death in early 1990s Spain. Praised for its visual poetry and compared to classics such as THE SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE, the film won an award earlier this year at the Berlin Film Festival.
Screening as part of the festival’s Special Presentations strand is UNA MUJER FANTÁSTICA (A FANTASTIC WOMAN), co-written by current Screenwriting MA student Gonzalo Maza. The film scooped two awards at the Berlinale, including the prestigious Silver Bear screenplay prize shared by Maza and director Sebastián Lelio.
LFS alumnus Ann Hui, regarded as one of most important filmmakers of the Hong Kong New Wave, brings to London her new film OUR TIME WILL COME. A lushly wrought spy drama, the film is set among a resistance movement during Japan’s occupation of Hong Kong. Distinguished LFS associates Abbas Kiarostami (who sadly died last year) and Richard Linklater also have headlining films in the festival programme, 24 FRAMES and LAST FLAG FLYING respectively.
Interim Director of London Film School, Gisli Snaer, says: ‘We’re absolutely thrilled and immensely proud to hear about the recognition alumni received once more at the BFI London Film Festival. Congratulations to all the graduates involved in this year’s LFF. The fact that so many of our students have gone on to work in the industry is both a credit to their incredible talent and the schools’ teaching excellence.’
The stellar line-up for London builds on the success of LFS at other international festivals this year. Hamid Ahmadi - whose final year film IN THE HILLS won the second prize at the 2016 Cinéfondation at Cannes- has been longlisted for the Short Film Academy Award. At the 67th Berlinale current screenwriting student Gonzalo Maza scooped two awards, including the prestigious Silver Bear for his work as co-writer of UNA MUJER FANTÁSTICA (A FANTASTIC WOMAN). Alumnus Carla Simón and LFS tutor Rafael Kapelinski were also recognized for their feature films SUMMER 1993 (ESTIU 1993) and BUTTERFLY KISSES respectively; Crystal Bear for Best film for BUTTERFLY KISSES and GWFF Best First Feature for SUMMER 1993
At the Venice International Film Festival LFS alumnus director Amanda Nell Eu’s (2012*) short film LAGI SENANG JAGA SEKANDANG LEMBU (IT’S EASIER TO RAISE CATTLE) has been shortlisted in the Orizzonti Corti section. Zhannat Alshanova (2017*)’s student film THE WHITE ORCHID HOTEL has been selected for final competition and screening at the 16th International Student Film and Video Festival of Beijing Film Academy (October 2017).
About London Film School
Founded in 1956, LFS is one of the world's longest established graduate filmmaking schools. The school is one of three Creative Skillset Film Academies and produces over 180 films a year via its Masters programme. The LFS alumni are established in film and television production in more than eighty countries, ranging from world-renowned filmmakers such as Mike Leigh, Michael Mann, Anna Hui and Duncan Jones to writers David Thomson and Iain Sinclair and emerging talents like Gonzalo Maza who won the prestigious Silver Bear, and Rafael Kapelinski, who took a Crystal Bear for best film at the 2017 Berlinale.
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[*] Indicates year of graduation