Underwire is the most exciting new film festival to launch in the last few years. Alongside the Birds Eye View festival, which returns in 2013, it is redressing the under-representation of female talent with positivity, creativity, energy and joy. More than that, it gives film lovers an opportunity to discover thrilling talent, to be lost in stunning visuals, engaging stories, brilliant performances and sharp scripting. And it proves, with its chock-ful roster of amazingly gifted women, that when the people behind discriminatory lists, events, awards nominations, festivals, articles, histories and references protest that "there just aren't any women around" or that women are too shy/absent/modest/unambitious/minor/petty/small to make the grade.... they're lying.
With awards for Best Director, Best Producer, Best Writer, Best Editor, Best Cinematographer, Best Composer and Best Film Journalist, the festival hopes to move the UK film community towards a more gender balanced industry, which recognises and encourages the work of women working across a range of crafts in the UK.
UnderWire was established by co-founders Gabriella Apicella and Gemma Mitchell in 2010. Gemma Mitchell and Helen Jack are the co-Directors of UnderWire 2011. Festival patrons include Samira Ahmed (journalist for the Guardian, the Independent, Radio 4), Kim Longinotto (director of Divorce Iranian Style, Sisters in Law), Andrew Kötting (director of Gallivant, Ivul), Nira Park (producer of Scott Pilgrim v the World, Attack the Block), Laura Mulvey (author of Visual and Other Pleasures, Fetishism and Curiosity).
- “With more than double the submissions and industry events from last year’s festival, we hope to increase opportunities for film creatives and audiences looking to meet and share work at a time when funding and resources are constrained within the UK film industry.”vHelen Jack, co-Director of UnderWire.
- "UnderWire will provide a much needed impetus to take a look at what new female voices in film can do. I'm really looking forward to watching the talent emerge." Rebecca O’Brien, Producer Sweet Sixteen, Looking for Eric.
The films in this year’s festival look at issues ranging from national identity (The Cake, Sunday), female sexuality (First Bite, Nocturn), adolescence (Biatch, I Luv Matt Johnson) and social responsibility (N25, Himalayan Sisters), bringing together work that looks to plant the seeds of engagement and discussion for everyone who attends over the four days in November.
- "There is a burst of female energy in British film at the moment, so having a forum for them to share their work at UnderWire is great!" Maxine Peake, Actor See No Evil, The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister
Alongside the film programme, UnderWire is hosting a day of affordable industry events on Saturday 26 November at The Shortwave Cinema and The Bermondsey Square Hotel. Sessions include Ladies First: Representation of Women in Music Videos, A Room of Her Own: Writing Leading Ladies and The Feminist and the Flirt: Performance Video Art, amongst others.
For the full programme details, visit http://www.underwirefestival.com/
All text except the 2nd paragraph is (c) UnderWire press materials