UK film premieres at Film4 Somerset House Summer Screen include THE WIFE and AMERICAN ANIMALS

 Glenn Close drama THE WIFE opens this year's Film4 Somerset House Summer season

Glenn Close drama THE WIFE opens this year's Film4 Somerset House Summer season

Though the cobblestones of the Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court can kill your backside, there is no doubt that Film4 Summer Screen at Somerset House is one of the capital's premiere outdoor film events. 

The season returns this August for 14 nights of the expected classic, cult and contemporary cinema mix, with extras provided by Bryn Williams' picnic hampers  plus a range of food to buy on site from vendors, and there's a fully-licensed bar and coffee point. There are  back-rests and blankets and even a very limited number of seated tickets for those who can't rough it.

What spices up the film programme though are the double-bill nights and red carpet premieres. In particular the Smoke Screen can recommend THE WIFE, the opening night premiere, for its superb Glenn Close central performance as a wife who has to confront her internalised submission to her husband's desire for a famous literary career which has in fact been built on her support and sacrifice. If you want to see acting greats like Close and co-star Jonathan Pryce tear chunks off each other in a timely story about wives and the patriarchy, this is for you. Closing the season is heist thriller AMERICAN ANIMALS, based on the true story of four students who mistake their lives for a movie and attempt to pull of one of the most audacious art-thefts in recent US history. It hails from the BAFTA-winning director Bart Layton, who will introduce the premiere.

The Somerset House E-newsletter Subscribers Pre-Sale is open from 10.00 today Wed 16 May. Tickets go on general sale on Friday 18 May at 10.00.

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Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Sundance London 2018 is nearly here... and women dominate the lineup

The cream of this year's American Sundance Film Festival crop comes to London again, once more in its Picturehouse Central home. The Smoke Screen's appetite is truly whetted by the line-up, having kept an eye on many of the titles since their original festival debut. Some have since gone on to theatrical release and to drown in evenmore acclaim. Two films stand out in particular. The Miseducation of Cameron Post, a wry and empathetic look at an American girl struggling in a gay conversation therapy genre, comes from the mind of Appropriate Behaviour director/writer Desiree Akhavan, and Smoke Screen remains a huge fan of that debut and thus eager for this follow-up, which has garnered great reviews since its original Sundance US appearance. Then there is Ari Aster's Hereditary, a horror film starring Toni Collete that has been lavished with the kind of praise that puts it in The Babadook and Get Out zone of greatness. Collete is expected to attend a Q&A after the screening of the film, for those who haven't passed out in shock from the terror.

The festival will open with the international premiere of Jennifer Fox’s The Tale, starring Laura Dern and Ellen Burstyn, and close four days later with the UK premiere of Leave No Trace, Debra Granik’s highly anticipated follow-up to the Academy Award-nominated Winter’s Bone. Both these films have garnered great reviews stateside.

Sundance has made a point of curating a line-up dominated by female filmmakers this year (7 out of 12 films are female-directed), as well as sprinkling panels and talks into the programme that reflect the current conversations about sex and gender in the American film industry. #Metoo and #Timesup are here to stay. Major UK film funders will join Half the Picture director Amy Adrion for The Big Culture Shift panel to examine what is next for the film industry and the steps needed to create a fairer and more inclusive film future. Triple Threat: Three major filmmakers in conversation will see three of this year's female Sundance filmmakers come together to discuss their careers and approach to their craft.

Sundance Film Festival: London returns to Picturehouse Central from 31 May to 3 June. You can view the programme and book tickets at the Picturehouse Central website.

 The Miseducation of Cameron Post

The Miseducation of Cameron Post

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Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Secret Cinema to launch Romeo + Juliet event tickets 18 May, promising to bring you to Verona Beach this summer

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Seemingly not content with letting Backyard Cinema play Baz Luhrmann's Romeo+Juliet in an immersive event cinema setting (they book a church and an entire choir), Secret Cinema are getting in on the action too with this just-announced limited run. Promised is an outdoor, summer festival-type experience taking place (once more) in a secret location, transformed for a limited time into the colourful world of Verona Beach from the movie. Will this deliver? Or will yet a barrage of yet more articles criticising the hefty ticket prices vs the actual experience be Secret Cinema's fate this summer? Its certainly a safe, crowd-pleasing choice of film, so high sales are no doubt ensured. Get thee to their mailing list to get early access to ticket sales from Tuesday 15th May at 12pm (BST), 72 hours before everyone else.

Tickets start from £49 (+ booking fees).

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Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Women to be championed by the BFI throughout June

 Agnes Varda is one of several female filmmakers celebrated by the BFI in June

Agnes Varda is one of several female filmmakers celebrated by the BFI in June

The BFI always have a lot going on, but June promises to be something extra special. Tying in with the Vote100 campaign, June will see the BFI celebrate work by and about women in a dizzying number of ways, through screenings, panels, Q&As, and more.

There will be a major season devoted to legendary french auteur AGNÈS VARDA, as well as the pioneering figure of IDA LUPINO, who carved out her own space in the male-dominated Hollywood of the 1940s as one of the few female directors and producers. The BFI’s new CLOSE UP series focuses on 13th and A Wrinkle In Time director AVA DUVERNAY, while women animators get their due as part of the BFI’s year-long ANIMATION 2018 programme. The WOMAN WITH A MOVIE CAMERA SUMMIT will honour trailblazers of the past, explore the power and pitfalls of grassroots feminist cinephile activism, champion new voices in criticism and programming, and explore movements like #MeToo and #TimesUp. The summit will take place on Saturday 16 June, with events including The Guilty Feminist podcast and a screening of Working Girl (Mike Nichols, 1988)Also in June the BFI will mark the 70th anniversary of Windrush with a programme celebrating WINDRUSH WOMEN.

Gaylene Gould, BFI Head of Cinema and Events said: “One hundred years ago British women marched to the voting booths for the first time. One hundred years later, Frances McDormand brandished a little gold man and instructed the women at the Oscars® ceremony to stand up. A continuum of action has brought about seismic change and, just like those women and men a century ago, we are witnessing a shift. This month, in honour of the Vote 100 campaign, we pay tribute to the women who transcended their worlds to expand ours, and present a programme bursting with female stories.”

Find out more and book tickets on the BFI site here.

Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.

Catch the London Kinovan this christmas

The Film London and London Screen Archives Kinovan (think a cinema-in-a-van) will be out and about this christmas, offering Londoners the chance to see -for free- archive footage from across decades of London history.

The van will be at the following locations:

Xmas Lights Switch On, Sutton
Sat 19 Nov 2016, 16:00 – 19:00
Sutton – KinoVan
Trinity Square, London EC3N

Winter Wonderland, Wimbledon
Sun 27 Nov 2016, 12:00 – 18:00
Merton – KinoVan
Wimbledon Station, Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 7NL

Raynes Park Xmas, Merton
Fri 2 Dec 2016, 15:30 – 19:00
Merton – KinoVan
Raynes Park, London SW20

Christmas Winter Festival, Haringey
Sat 3 Dec 2016, times TBC
Haringey – KinoVan
Tottenham Green, London N15

Bruce Castle – WinterFest, Haringey
Sun 11 Dec 2016, times TBC
Haringey – KinoVan

Click here to find out where the KinoVan will be pitching up next.

The KinoVan can also come to you! Email to book a screening at screenheritage@filmlondon.org.uk

Comment

Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.