French Film Festival UK returns for 28th edition

Hybrid edition planned

by Amber Wilkinson

Isabelle Huppert in Mama Weed
Isabelle Huppert in Mama Weed Photo: Courtesy of FFF
The 28th edition of the French Film Festival UK has been announced as a hybrid event, combining physical screenings in 25 towns and cities with an online selection.

The festival, which runs until December 17, will open on November 4 with the UK premiere in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen of the comedy thriller Mama Weed (La Daronne), starring Isabelle Huppert, who is expected to introduce the film virtually from Paris. The screenings will be followed by a recorded Q and A with director Jean-Paul Salomé. An innovation this year (in common with many international festivals) will be a week of online screenings (fff @ home) in collaboration with Festival Scope. Many of these titles will be UK premieres.

Richard Mowe, Festival Director and Co-Founder, commented: “Although many blockbusters have been postponed until next year and multiplex cinemas have either closed or restricted their schedules, the festival and its partner cinemas are staying faithful to audiences by presenting an exciting programme of contemporary and classic films from France and beyond.”

Directors in the line-up include: Anne Fontaine (Night Shift), Valérie Donzelli (Notre Dame), Nicholas Vanier (Spread Your Wings), Eric Barbier (Small Country) and Emmanuel Mouret (Love Affairs). Newcomers will also be screened, including Manele Labidi (Arab Blues); Laurent Michell (Lola); and Caroline Vignal (My Donkey, My Lover & I).

The rich history of French cinema is represented this year by a 60th anniversary restoration of Jean-Luc Godard’s iconic Breathless and Franco-Greek director Costa-Gavras’s first feature The Sleeping Car Murders.

Mowe added: “Despite the challenges, we are delighted to have one of the most varied and vibrant programmes ever at this year’s French Film Festival thanks in part to the continued support our funders and sponsors. We hope audiences will respond to the selection in cinemas where current health guidelines are in operation and will appreciate the option of fff @ home. In these dark times we need the light and reflection that cinema can offer."

The full programme will be announced on October 22.

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