Birmingham's Cinema Stories
At Flatpack we've always had a bit of a thing for Birmingham's film-going history, from bus tours of 30s Odeons to the amazing screenprinted posters created at the Arts Lab in the 1970s.
Wonderland is a new project mapping the city's picture-palaces past and present and exploring the stories associated with them - from fairground film shows right up to the birth of the multiplex and beyond. With a team of partners and volunteer researchers, we’ll be looking at how cinema has shaped the streets, social lives and dreams of Brummies over the past century, leading to a rich lineup of activities in 2022 including…
- An exhibition at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery exploring a treasure trove of objects and stories from collections, archives and the people of Birmingham
- An online map detailing the city's 150+ cinemas across a century of movie-going
- A programme of walks, talks, workshops and screenings kicking off as part of the sixteenth Flatpack Festival
Birmingham is the home of the UK's oldest cinema, the Electric, and the place where South Asian movies took off in this country - a city dripping with film history, from the invention of celluloid to the birth of the Odeon chain. We’re so excited to explore and share this story - but we can’t do it alone. We are inviting anyone and everyone with a cinema story to share, a lost-cinema themed photo album or a drawer full of old ticket stubs to be part of this exciting project. If that’s you, visit our public call out page, and get in touch if you have any questions.
Welcome to Wonderland…
Wonderland is presented by the Birmingham 2022 Festival, supported by Arts Council England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund, produced by Flatpack Festival.