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Women Over 50 Film Festival comes to Brighton

There are just two weeks to go until the Women Over 50 Film Festival (WOFFF) comes to Brighton and the organisers are delighted to unveil the full programme of films and events for the third festival, plus announce celebrity endorsement from award winning Sussex based actress Greta Scacchi.

The Women Over 50 Film Festival (WOFFF) supported by FilmDoo, takes place on 16th and 17th September 2017 in Brighton, is an international film festival aiming to redress the age and gender imbalance older women face in the film industry; Actress Greta Scacchi who lives in a village near to Brighton, is supporting the event because of what she sees happening in Hollywood.

Greta said: “I am delighted that Women Over 50 Film Festival is here to upset the Hollywood apple cart that accepts actresses playing ten years older while actors can play ten years younger. This festival is unique in celebrating rather than hiding or ignoring older women in film. WOFFF rejoices in our older stories, older faces and older hearts and it is my pleasure to be associated with the Festival.”

WOFFF champions women over 50 in front of and behind the camera, and this September’s third annual, interactive, engaging, entertaining weekend of films and activities for older women and their friends looks to be the largest event yet with 55 films being screened, from over 150 submissions from around the world, the largest number of submissions ever received.

This year’s festival includes work from filmmakers in the UK, Ireland, France, Australia, USA and Canada. Nuala O’Sullivan, WOFFF festival director commented: “What’s exciting this year… Is that for the first time we’re also screening work from filmmakers in Afghanistan, Iran and Egypt.”

There’s an impressive lineup of onscreen talent at this year’s festival. Stars like Maureen Lipman, Denise Welch, Anita Dobson, Miriam Margolyes, Carrie Cohen, Ewan MacIntosh, Sheila Reid and Maureen Beattie are front and centre on the WOFFF screen showing that women over 50 are here to stay.

There’s something for everyone at this unique two-day festival. As well as eight programmes of over 50 short films, there is an all-female panel event, filmmaker Q&As, a lecture about older women’s representation on screen and a variety of practical workshops. There are workshops to interest filmmakers and non-filmmakers alike. Sessions include How to Make a Film on your Smart Phone and How to Navigate Digital Distribution and Self Distribution. For non-filmmakers there are workshops on Learning to Embroider with Vanessa Marr from the University of Brighton and Latin American Dance with 86 year-old Elsa Perez, who is also the subject of the documentary ‘Get Riel’ which is screening at WOFFF.

Nuala O’Sullivan adds: “We’re excited to see the depth and breadth of talent on display, both on screen at the festival and in our other events. We’re delighted to have film industry professionals, like Felicity Beckett and Claire Lamond, on our jury panel and University of Brighton film academics, Vanessa Marr and Louise FitzGerald, hosting workshops and delivering lectures at this year’s WOFFF.”

WOFFF 2017 festival launches officially on Thursday 14 September with a screening of Mamma Mia! at the Duke of York’s Picturehouse at Preston Circus. This feel-good gem not only stars three strong, older women – Meryl Streep, Julie Walters and Christine Baranski – but also has three strong, older women behind the camera – writer Catherine Johnson, producer Judy Craymer and director Phyllida Lloyd.

WOFFF closes on Sunday evening with an awards ceremony and jury prizes for all winning filmmakers, (Best Animation, Best Drama, Best Documentary, Best Experimental Film), and the all-important Audience Choice Award.

For tickets go to www.wofff.co.uk/2017-festival/tickets. Prices start from £8.55 per programme. A Weekend Pass giving you access to all eight programmes is £56.35. All tickets are available via Eventbrite at https://wofff17tickets.eventbrite.co.uk. Some events are free but still require booking via Eventbrite. Limited concession tickets are also available.

For more information about the Women Over 50 Film Festival 2017, visit www.wofff.co.uk