Day 3 and some sore heads from the previous late night, but the festival is well and truly in it’s swing and the comments in the foyer are hugely enthusiastic. 5 films back-to-back – what Francine describes as ”the long Friday” – Is anyone going to make the lot? There may be some sort of prize…
Before the films we are running titles for the festival, trailers for forthcoming films at the festival and one of our flash film entries. Spike Golding’s beautiful titles set the mood – here they are for anyone who hasn’t made it to a film yet….
I’m up early to return James Watkins to the station; as we arrive I think I see a mysterious woman dressed in black and veiled in mist at the end of the platform…. but I don’t like to draw James’ attention to it and dispatch him safely.
On my return, I’m just in time for Went the Day Well? at the BAC, introduced by Francine and tailed by Dr Jeremy Strong from the Centre of Adaptations at De Montford, who talks a little about Graham Greene and the process of adapting this short story. We have always managed to have a Graham Greene film at the festival and this is a cracker of English Villagers protecting their own – again, Kazuo Ishiguro picking out his highlights from the programme - “David Farrar – bizarrely Germans speak in perfect Home Counties accents while pretending to be English, then revert to vee-vant-you-over-zer accents once they drop their disguises!”
Diary of a Wimpy Kid is running parallel at the Stables at the Bull Hotel and we hear reports back that their is a frenzied audience of excited kids and particularly special Leakers gingerbread…
At 2, the quite sensational Bunny Lake is Missing, one of Francine’s highlights for the festival. It achieves satisfying gasps as the story unravels, and coming out blinking into the afternoon sunshine, we are all feeling a little shaken.
Wuthering Heights at 4 – “thank you for coming out of the sun into this dark cinema” says Olivia Hetreed, screenwriter, friend of the festival and member of our advisory panel as she introduces the film ”let me warn you, you’re about to go to an even darker place….”. The film is followed by her and Nic Jeune in conversation.
Next, our huge sell-out event, Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner with Tom Courtenay. The BAC is packed to the gunnels and Sir Tom is a triumph – in conversation with Francine and full of brilliant anecdotes and things to look out for in the film – only those who were there will know why he is suddenly without his socks halfway through his long distance run… The film itself gets a great response and a round of applause, which is great to hear.
Then for the really hardy – our 11pm showing of Masque of the Red Death. There’s a brilliant turn out and a huge effort has been made with the masks. We pull ourselves away from the party atmosphere of the Palace bar to settle into the suitably trippy and mad horror of the film.