Brighton film festival CINECITY returns for two weeks this November

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Brighton Journal spoke to co-founder of CINECITY, Tim Brown, on what to expect from this year’s edition of the festival.


CINECITY is returning to cinema screens around Brighton and the South Coast for its 16th edition of the festival this November. For two weeks, the film festival takes over various screens around the city, offering a wealth of exclusive premieres, previews, talks, and live soundtracks.


Tim Brown, co-founder of CINECITY along with Frank Gray, spoke to Brighton Journal about launching the city’s first film festival: “It seems strange in retrospect to think that Brighton didn’t have a film festival of its own when we started CINECITY in 2003.” The festival explores themes around the ‘cinematic’ converging with music, literature, design and digital culture.


Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet star in ‘Beautiful Boy’.


The programme is compiled of films Tim and the CINECITY team have carefully selected over the past year from film festivals and online submissions. Local filmmakers are also invited to submit short films to be shown before the feature films.


“Over the years we have got to know a little what audiences in the city like to see but it’s also really important that there are films and directors that audiences know nothing about but they take a chance and discover something new at each festival.”


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Tim explained how some popular films have already sold out or are close to, such as The Favourite by award-winning writer, Yorgos Lanthimos (The Lobster, Killing of a Sacred Deer). Also, Sorry to Bother You, a satirical comedy written and directed by Boots Riley, has attracted global attention.


Emma Stone stars in ‘The Favourite’ by Yorgos Lanthimos.


Other films receiving a Brighton premiere ahead of UK release include Green Book, winner of the People’s Choice Award at Toronto’s International Film Festival. This win has prompted rumours of Oscar success along with Beautiful Boy, starring Timothée Chalamet and Steve Carell.


To close the festival, Duke of York’s cinema will hose a very special live event: “Blue marks the 25th anniversary of Derek Jarman’s landmark film with the soundtrack performed live by Simon Fisher Turner and narration by poet and musician Black Sifichi to create a unique sensory experience.”


Brighton-based director, Ben Wheatley, will be attending a Q+A for his new release ‘Happy New Year, Colin Burstead’. The film, which hilariously depicts English dysfunctional family,  was met with success recently at London’s BFI Film Festival.


Brighton-based director, Ben Wheatley, for ‘Happy New Year Colin Burstead’.


Some of the biggest transitions over the years the festival has run include the technological developments in cinema: “When we started it was all 35mm and now it’s 99% digital so in a way that’s been the single biggest change. Though, this is mainly behind the scenes and is perhaps not something that the audience is necessarily aware of.”


Previous editions of the festival have welcomed notable faces including Nick Cave, Ben Wheatley, Laurie Anderson, and Laura Mulvey. It is important to note CINECITY curate an annual programme of events, including the film programme for the annual Brighton Festival each May.


CINECITY film festival takes place in venues across Brighton and the South Coast from 9-25 November 2019. For full film listings and tickets, please visit the CINECITY website.

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