From 7 to 18 October the 64th BFI London Film Festival is available across the UK.

It will be the first ever edition of the festival to be widely accessible wherever you are in the UK, with over 50 virtual premieres, free online events, and cinema screenings across the land

Featuring twelve days of UK premieres available to enjoy online via BFI Player or in cinemas at BFI Southbank, around London, and throughout the UK. A Shorts, events and XR exhibition programs and an industry programme for professionals in the business.

TBB has pulled out our Event recommendations for the festival …


Screen Talk: Letitia Wright

Much celebrated actor Letitia Wright joins us to discuss her stunning performance in our opening film Mangrove, as well as her outstanding career to date.

Much celebrated Guyanese-British actor Letitia Wright joins us to discuss her stunning performance in our opening film Mangrove (Steve McQueen), as well as her outstanding career to date. Trained at Identity School of Acting in Hackney, Wright’s first leading role was as troubled teenager Jamie Harrison in Urban Hymn (2015) – a powerful drama that unfolded against the backdrop of the 2011 London riots. Over the past ten years, Wright has played dynamic roles in several feature films and TV series, including a charismatic turn as Shuri in Black Panther (2018), which brought her international recognition. She also appeared in British dramas Top Boy, Banana, Humans, Doctor Who and Black Mirror. Wright was listed among the BAFTA Breakthrough Brits for Urban Hymn and in 2019 she received the BAFTA Rising Star Award, as well as the Outstanding Performance award from the Screen Actors Guild for Black Panther.

  • Watch on YouTube Start time Thursday 8 October 2020 18:30 BST


Spotlight Conversation Ava DuVernay and Array

Filmmaker and ARRAY Founder Ava DuVernay will be joined by ARRAY President Tilane Jones, ARRAY Director of Programming Mercedes Cooper, ARRAY Alliance Executive Director Regina Miller, ARRAY Filmworks President Sarah Bremner and ARRAY Filmworks Head of Physical Production Paul Garnes, in conversation with Gaylene Gould, writer, broadcaster and artistic director.

Founded in 2011 by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, ARRAY is a multi-platform media company and arts collective arts and social impact collective dedicated to narrative change. The organization catalyses its work through a quartet of mission-driven entities: the film distribution arm ARRAY Releasing, the content company ARRAY Filmworks, the programming and production hub ARRAY Creative Campus and the non-profit group ARRAY Alliance.

Over the past ten years ARRAY has blazed a trail, challenging industry orthodoxy across distribution, production, exhibition and through focused community activism. ARRAY Releasing focuses on grass-roots distribution of narrative and documentary feature work by Black artists, people of colour and women of all kinds (including LFF2019 titles Lingua Franca and Burning Cane). Its film and television production arm ARRAY Filmworks’ slate includes Peabody and Emmy winning limited series When They See Us, Oscar®-nominated criminal justice documentary 13th and the ground-breaking TV series Queen Sugar. The non-profit ARRAY Alliance expands on the organisation’s work through impactful, inclusive programming and community initiatives.

As industry re-thinks its systems and ways of doing things, the Festival asks what can we learn from their model and approach to working across multiple platforms in amplifying underrepresented voices and building a more inclusive industry. www.arraynow.com


Telling Black Stories on Screen – Kemp Powers and Kwame Kwei-Armah in Conversation
Despite a focus on diversity and inclusion over recent years, endemic issues around access and representation remain within the film and television industries. In an extension of the festival’s association with Ida Rose and the Young Vic Theatre on a pitching showcase for black writing talent, director, playwright and Artistic Director of the Young Vic Kwame Kwei-Armah talks to filmmaker, screenwriter and playwright Kemp Powers (screenwriter and co-director, Soul; screenwriter, One Night In Miami, both screening in the festival) about his work and the importance of representing black stories on screen.


Taking Black Writers Seriously in association with Ida Rose and the Young Vic Theatre

This year the festival is hosting a 2-part industry event with black writers to raise awareness of their work and create a live opportunity to explore new stories from new voices with commissioners and production companies.

LFF 2020 has joined with black-led film production company Ida Rose founded by Shantelle Rochester and Kwame Kwei-Armah’s Young Vic Theatre to present a showcase and pitching event with black novelists and early career screenwriters to raise awareness of the range of novels with strong potential for adaptation, and the ability of black-led development teams to create compelling original concepts and scripts that should be commissioned for development and production. There will be an invited audience of editors, producers, and production companies.

Writers have long voiced a frustration at the way characters and storylines fall all too easily into lazy stereotypes rather that reflecting the diversity of black people and their lives in Britain and around the world. Addressing this in a fresh and proactive way with this event is former theatre director Alby James who moved into film and broadcasting with the BBC in the mid-90s and has helped the South African film and television industry emerge from decades of apartheid, championing equality over division.

Kwame Kwei-Armah says: “This is an important time in the history of our sector, a time when there can be no more excuses. Let’s all do our bit and make sure that the talent meets the broadcasters and broadcasters meet the talent. This is the time.”

What’s Stopping Young People Getting Into the Film Industry?
Practical advice and information on ways to overcome difficulties such as accessing funding, learning to network and making contacts, and finding opportunities for work outside filmmaking centres like London.

  • Watch on YouTube Start time Saturday 10 October 2020 12:00 BST Find out more

Another Perspective
Discussion around the possibilities for disabled people to create and provoke with their art is rare. Events promoting accessibility are often formulaic, usually aimed at access to the industry and not the talents and unique perspectives of disabled filmmakers. This event will recognise disabled filmmakers’ contributions to the landscape of film while interrogating how their disabilities are a positive and integral part of their filmmaking.

  • Watch on YouTube Start time Sunday 11 October 2020 12:00 BST

Queer and Pleasant Land
A panel discussion exploring cinematic answers to the question: what does it mean to be queer in a rural community?

  • Watch on YouTube Start time Sunday 18 October 2020 12:00 BST Find out more

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