1-4 February 2007
That difficult second festival was not too difficult, thanks to a slightly less miserly budget and a bigger team. We are still organising everything from our attic at this stage, which does get a bit much during holidays when the kids stomp up the stairs or when work experience placements have to find their way into deepest Balsall Heath from the bus.
Proceedings kicked off with Minima accompanying The Seashell and the Clergyman in St Paul’s Church (still not sure how we got away with this one, given that it concerns a priest’s erotic hallucinations). Matt Hulse, a guest the previous year with his Audible Picture Show, returned with an awesome, clanking beast called the Harrachov Exchange which set up home in 22 Green Street for the duration. Our first ever international guests, ‘the Olis’, bring with them a UK premiere of Berlin comedy Black Sheep, and Nicholas Bullen & company rescore a selection of aquatic avant-garde shorts from Man Ray and Harry Smith.
A particularly strong year for animation includes Paprika by the late Satoshi Kon, Christiane Cegavske’s one-of-a-kind Blood Tea and Red String, and terrific shorts by Peter Larsson and Luis Nieto. Starkly contrasting Q&As come in the form of Mark Locke’s Saturday Night Takeaway (a riotous pseudo-chatshow with Tamworth’s one-man film industry) and a discussion with writer David Rudkin following his cult 1974 TV play Penda’s Fen. After being blown away by Broadcast at the Jug of Ale on first arriving in Birmingham, to have them come and DJ for Flatpack as part of Andy Votel’s Hocus Focus night is a genuine treat. Looking back, it’s still hard to believe that Trish Keenan is no longer with us.
We emerged from Flatpack vol.2 a little burnt-out (nothing new there), and for all its popularity not sure whether it’s possible to turn this thing into an actual living. We take the risky decision of having a year off, in order to plan for the longer term and move into a proper office.