Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Culture: Lights Shine on Past Present and Future; It's Lights, Camera, Action on Tyneside as the Focus Turns towards This Year's Northern Lights Film Festival. Barbara Hodgson Finds out More

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Culture: Lights Shine on Past Present and Future; It's Lights, Camera, Action on Tyneside as the Focus Turns towards This Year's Northern Lights Film Festival. Barbara Hodgson Finds out More

Article excerpt

Byline: Barbara Hodgson

PAST, Present and Future is the theme of the fifth Northern Lights Film Festival which opens on December 7.

The three-day event will showcase the best of Baltic, Scandinavian and Northern European film at Tyneside Cinema's temporary home in Gateshead Old Town Hall. Other venues will feature additional screenings and events.

With seven premieres, Northern Lights promises to take over Tyneside for one action-packed weekend and, as well as including hits from the festival's history, it will show current releases and introduce the UK's brightest emerging film-making talents.

Highlights include the black comedy How to Get Rid of Others at the opening gala, and the closing gala production Hope, an elegantly-crafted tale of blackmail, deceit and redemption.

Alongside the main programme, Baltic in Gateshead will host the international premiere of Orange North Star award-winning short film Trip by young director Harry Wootliff.

Shot in Whitley Bay, it tells the story of a father going the wrong way about trying to do the right thing for his two daughters.

And the atmospheric surroundings of St Paul's Church next to Bede's World, Jarrow, will be the setting for documentary Into Great Silence, which offers a rare insight into the gentle rhythms of the lives of reclusive monks in the French Alps.

Mark Dobson, festival director and chief executive of Tyneside Cinema, said: "Since 2003, NLFF has grown year on year into one of the UK's most talked about film events. We've lined up an exceptional range of regional and UK premieres for people to enjoy."

He said that with support from Northern Rock Foundation, a search is also being launched to find a new artistic director to take the Northern Lights Film Festival up to another level.

Meanwhile up and coming producers in the region are heading off to Hollywood to learn from the world's best movie-makers.

Rising talents Ed Barratt and Chris Taylor have been picked to accompany North-East based Ipso Facto Films to the US as part of a new Producer Training Initiative. The six-month programme, launched by Ipso Facto together with Newcastle Gateshead Initiative and Northern Lights Film Festival, aims to invest in the future of local film production. …

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