Now in its ninth year promoting and nurturing upcoming talent, the East London Film Festival will set a corner of the capital alight again this spring. Running from 23 - 30 April, it promises 8 days packed with screenings, workshops, talks and after-parties.
For those already part of, or wanting to break into, the industry, this year the Filmmakers Centre is to be found on a Routemaster bus parked in Spitalfields, whose top deck will host workshops and seminars. Screenings take place at various venues in the East End, including Rich Mix (Bethnal Green), Genesis cinema (Whitechapel) and The Rio (Dalston). As part of a commitment to making the festival accessible to all, there will be free events at Spitalfields market, including a screening of the silent classic Nosferatu accompanied by 'soundscape artists' Minima.
The line-up from the UK takes in diverse perspectives on London and the East End, from the notorious legends of its criminal underworld to a rich history intertwined with the cultures of its many immigrants. Features include Steve Kelly's City Rats, starring Danny Dyer (The Business, Football Factory) - billed as "a [film]Pulp Fiction[/film] style blend that reveals London's true dark and twisted underbelly" - and the experimental Trail Of The Spider, which brings the Wild West to the Hackney Marshes using a mixed cast including non-actors.
The ELFF is also brimming with shorts and documentaries with a local flavour, including a triple bill of "Dalston Docs" and a night of "East End True Life Stories". As a closing night treat there's a chance to get a sneak preview of the UK documentary Sounds Like Teen Spirit, which takes a look at the trials and tribulations of teenage Eurovision Song Contest hopefuls as they battle it out to be top crooner.
In keeping with East London's vibrant, multicultural atmosphere, the festival has scouted out cinema from the wider world, with a number of premieres sourced from Europe, the Middle East and Asia, like the eagerly anticipated Afro Samurai: Resurrection - an anime feature that fuses blaxploitation influences and futuristic martial arts action, with Samuel L. Jackson and Lucy Liu providing voices.
Tickets for all screenings cost £7.00 (concessions £5.50). For more information on the East London Film Festival and booking details visit their website.