Lots of filmnights going on
I remember back in the day - about 8 years ago - when we first started doing an event called Burdzeye at the Custard Factory. (Hopefully we've got better at coming up with names since then.) Fix Film Club was still around but that was about it, and someone even rang up to say 'that was my idea, I was going to do a filmnight.' Birmingham was very much a one- or two-filmnight kind of town.
Fastforward, and they're everywhere. Last week, the Local Shorts Club. Tonight, the launch of a new AV night at Concrete in the jewellery quarter, and on Monday the Spotted Dog in Digbeth hosts a regular Irish Filum Night. Then next Sunday there's us, plus Shorts on Walls, a new animator's get-together the following night at the Rainbow. You've also got the occasional Monosin Short Film Festival (more of a night than a festival), until recently the Screen Test events at mac and from May a new season of screenings and events at the library theatre in town. And probably loads of others. They're all doing quite different things, and all building audiences for different kinds of film. They're egged on by cheaper kit, the marketing/programming power of the internet - and the increasingly limited choice in our cinemas. At least people are taking things into their own hands though. We may get misty-eyed about the days of latenight projector-battles, tussling over corners like dealers in The Wire, but on the whole this seems like a healthier scene.