On Wednesday, July 14th, Cine Circle UK hosted another successful edition of their Women's Film Festival in partnership with Greenlit.
The festival began with a 90-minute panel discussion with the award-winning, all-female creative team behind the feature music drama Love Without Walls, including Director Jane Gull (My Feral Heart), Producer Karen Newman (Just Charlie) and DP Susanne Salavati (BBC’s Enterprise). The three women also served as judges for the festival, which finished with an awards ceremony.
Greenlit founder and CEO Peter J. Storey was very excited to be hosting the virtual event and expressed his admiration for the distinguished panel and encouraged all guests to spread the word about the Love Without Walls campaign. ‘I can't tell you how excited I genuinely am to be working with these filmmakers,’ he said. ‘They’re doing something genuinely different, genuinely outside those traditional gatekeepers in the traditional industry.’
Inspired by her own family’s experiences with housing insecurity, Gull wrote a first draft of Love Without Walls in 2011. She revisited the project during the beginning of lockdown last year and eventually sent a script to Newman for feedback. ‘And I remember ringing her the next day going, “we have to make this,”’ Newman said. “It was so unique, so beautiful, so poignant. ‘There was so much in the story, and with a musical element that’s in it as well, it was just perfect.’
When the panel discussed the benefits of crowdfunding, Newman admitted that she found the process “painful” before being exposed to Greenlit. ‘And then I met Peter, and the way that Greenlit approach crowdfunding is just so filmmaker friendly, and you don’t feel like you are basically begging, you actually realise that you’re creating an audience and you’re marketing the film,’ she said. ‘And I don’t think — I think I can say this with some confidence — that there isn’t any other platform that does that.’
The competition for awards at this edition of the festival was notably stiff. Cine Circle UK founder ZB Siwek said he and the panel received submissions from over 30 counties. Yellowbird, a short thriller written and directed by Lucy Chappell, who also starred in the film, won Best Cinematography. Marcela Cossíos brought home the award of Best Director for her work on the Peruvian short film Under the Balcony. And to finish off a terrific evening of celebrating women in the film industry, Finn’s Law was named Best Film. The short documentary directed by Holly McClellan tells the emotional story behind a 2019 law protecting police dogs from which the film gets its name.