Epsom’s first international film festival honours women heroes
The red carpet will be rolled out in Epsom next month when the town’s first ever SATISFIED EYE International Film Festival (SEIFF) holds its inaugural event with a theme of Women Heroes. Tickets are now available for a host of exciting screenings and events.
A long weekend of screenings, with 35 new films including a UK and a European premiere, workshops, an international street food market and Q&As kicks off with a dramatic Star Wars-themed opening ceremony, with stuntmen from Rogue One performing a death defying leap. The festival closes with a glamorous red carpet awards ceremony at the historic Queen’s Stand, Epsom Racecourse.
Tickets can be bought HERE
Something for everyone
The three-day programme unveiled this week comprises 16 screenings and other events in the Myers Studio, Epsom Playhouse, and in Epsom Square, and the gala dinner awards ceremony when specially designed trophies will be awarded to winning filmmakers.
Screenings include a mixture of feature length and short films, including fiction, animation, and documentary. The films were selected from hundreds of submissions across almost 40 different countries by panels of industry professionals including Oscar, BAFTA and Emmy winners, as well as local judges.
SEIFF Artistic Director Chris Hastings said: “The standard of entries was extremely high, and we could easily have filled a whole week’s worth of screenings with fantastic new films. The judges had such a difficult time selecting just the 35 we do have, and we are all so excited to share them with people in the borough.”
In contrast to Venice, which came under fire this year for having only one female director in the contest, SEIFF organisers are proud to announce they have selected films by several women, with one screening entirely composed of films directed by women. The festival also has an award for Best Female Director. Around half the films submitted were by women directors.
The festival is also screening a much-acclaimed new feature-length film for children called Behind the Blue Door. In its original Polish version, the film has English subtitles suitable for competent young readers.
Road to Sparta is a feature-length insightful documentary following four runners taking on the gruelling 246 kilometre marathon (Spartathlon) held in Greece each year. This will be followed by a question and answer session with the makers of the film.
Polterheist is an uproariously funny British-made feature where two hapless criminals kidnap a psychic medium, forcing her to contact a man they accidentally murdered in order to find where he buried his cash.
There will also be a question and answer session with Surrey-based animator and director Liam Harris whose short animation Perched has been nominated for the People’s Choice award. Other events include a chance for filmmakers to pitch to industry professionals and for budding actors to learn some of the secrets of the infamous casting couch.
The festival is hosting the European premiere of Indian-made short D.A.T.E., where an older woman looks to return to the job market, as well as the UK premiere of French feature film The Sleeper by the River, a dark comedy based on the award-winning book “Les Bottes Rouge” (The Red Boots) by Franz Bartelt. Shot in the Ardennes, this is a story of love, sex, madness, homemade beer and the Zen of making French fries.
All events, some of them free, are open to the public and tickets are on sale to everyone from Monday, 17 September (following a period of early access to those pre-registered on the SEIFF site).
Most events cost £5 per ticket but a festival pass giving access to all events except the awards ceremony costs £25.
Chris Hastings added: “There is something for everyone and, as an event that brings together both the industry and the community, we believe it’s the first festival on the planet to combine great films with the world’s best brownies, casting workshops and the chance to get your face painted like Spiderman!”