There were many up and coming filmmakers appearing at the Bolton International Film Festival, but this year saw a star from the cobbles grace the red carpet.
Opening this year’s event was special guest Julie Hesmondhalgh, known for her role as Hayley Cropper in Coronation and more recently for the BBC drama, The Pact.
The actress said: “I’ve seen so many amazing films here tonight that have blown my socks off and shown me that the boundaries of filmmaking are nevertheless being pushed, telling stories that will touch people from all corners of the globe.
Daisy Moore, director Seven Bananas said: “The film of mine that was screened tonight was about a friend of mine that took their own life and about revisiting the final messages she sent.
“It method so much to be her and see people’s responses, I don’t think streaming films at home can ever capture the magic of a packed cinema.
“I’m so excited to be able to really talk to people once again and be amongst so many talented filmmakers.
“I used to be an actor, but there’s something about being a director that I really enjoy; that I can take charge and build the world of the narrative and have a cohesive vision that’s my own.”
“I have laughed, cried and everything in between when watching these inventive films that have really dipped a toe into the human condition.”
Adrien Barber, director of the Bolton Film Festival said: “It’s great to be back in the cinema and screening films for audiences which is such an important shared experience.
“Cinema has always gone by its ups and downs and it has had a really tough time during the pandemic.
“But, at the end of the day nothing compares to the experience of watching a film with other people in a cinema, it’s an experience you just can’t replicate at home.”
Ornella Hawthorn Gardez, director of Slow Down, a tense short film about gangs of abductors who prey on women in nightclubs said: “It’s amazing to truly be here, I screamed when I knew that I would be able to come.
“I look at film festivals as a way to travel the country and I have a enormous admiration for all of these other great directors.
“My film is just under 10 minutes, and is based on true events, so I want the audience to be as confused as the main character was when this really happened.”
The festival featured several directors, including Shaun James Grant, director of Hope, a thriller, filmed in Grantham about a young associate searching for their daughter said: “The idea for this film came to me not long after I had a child.
“I was very pleased with some of the comments I received.
“To make something creative and have it resonate with anyone is a blessing, so I’m very happy.”
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