A single-orbit sampling of labs, flicks and vibes from London’s largest genre film festivalMay 14th, 2009 | Patrick Pearce
London is known for many things, but not necessarily genre film. Overlapping with the Palestine Film Festival and hot on the heels of the East End Film Festival, Sci-Fi London recently hoisted its flag of science-fiction and fantastical film for its eighth edition. The term “science-fiction” doesn’t quite cover this richly-packed six-day event which notably offers a stream of “science fact” related talks, debates and demonstrations. Check out genre films like former Skids frontman Scotsman Richard Jobson's short I Am Digital (view the trailer here) and Stingray Sam, the newly-completed six-part series from Cory McAbee (view the trailer here). The Independent’s Patrick Pearce did a fly-by of the fest to give you a sample of the films, directors and general goings-on at Sci-Fi London.
The Apollo Piccadilly’s neon-lit stairs bathe me in a blue glow, zapping all worries of H1N1 and other possible outside world infections as I descend into Sci Fi London’s infectiously enthusiastic lower lobby, bar, gaming arcade and general festival hub.
A round-up and interview with four young Pakistani filmmakers at LIDF.April 15th, 2009 | Patrick Pearce
What do we know of Pakistan? Formerly part of India and an independent state recently turned 60. Dodgy government and military, complicated nuclear-armed international politics. And in the media blasts of recent years, the home of boot camps and hideouts for international terrorists. But what else? With this question, LIDF director Patrick Hazard set out to see if filmmaking for social change could fly in Pakistan.
With the support (and security apparatus) of the British High Commission, Hazard teamed up last January with Peter Fraser from UK media organization InSight Education to lead 12 media students from four Pakistan universities through an intensive five day documentary workshop in Karachi.
A chat with festival director Patrick HazardApril 15th, 2009 | Patrick Pearce
The London International Documentary Festival has no film marketplace, no pitching sessions, and its debates seem more oriented towards society at large rather than the industry. So what drives it? The Independent’s Patrick Pearce chats with festival director Patrick Hazard about the LIDF’s origins, themes and raison d’être.
Let’s backtrack a bit and tell me about how the festival came into being.
Patrick Pearce blogs the young festival's opening weekend.April 1st, 2009 | Patrick Pearce
From freak shows to fetishes to filmmaking for social change in Pakistan, London International Documentary Festival (LIDF) showcases documentaries from all over the world and subjects from every corner of the imagination. The Independent blogger Patrick Pearce give us the scoop from across the Atlantic, covering everything from the history of this three-year-old festival, to the venues and, of course, the filmmakers. Catching everything from the the John Samson Retrospective to Richard Butchins's first feature The Last American Freak Show (view the trailer here), Pearce relates the full experience of the opening weekend event.
With documentaries being at the forefront of independent film for almost a decade now, you would think that a city like London would have had a major festival dedicated to the documentary for decades. So I was surprised to discover that the London International Documentary Festival (LIDF) is only in its third year of existence.