Northern Lights Film Festival launches

Okay, okay, I know it's bad form to paste in a press release but boy, can I not wait to get my hands properly dirty with this festival.  It is going to be WICKED.  I'll post little updates as each session is confirmed, but in the meantime check out the first details... Northern Lights Film Festival (NLFF) 2010 has launched with a fresh focus and feel that will appeal to both locals and visitors to the North East.

Taking place between 20-28 March at venues across Newcastle and Durham, this seventh festival will bring the general public, film experts and the media industry together – and will be an experience that will push festival-goers to cross boundaries, whether real or imagined.

Through a mix of events, film screenings and soup sessions, leading risk takers and mischief makers from the worlds of advertising, film, games and science will explore various topics – with opportunities for those in attendance to question, challenge or take part.

Across the ten days, people will be able to see the world’s oldest surviving advert, watch ad men battle it out to repackage Whitley Bay as a Hollywood destination, learn about DIY film making, receive festival top tips and see new work in progress.

Worlds will collide at a sci-fi night during which visitors, via the latest science and media technology, can experience life as an astronaut, watch special effects, have a go on a motion simulator ride and set their own UFO Northern Light into the sky.  Opinions are equally set to collide at an exploration of censorship, where young programmers, artists and censors will join school students to debate who has the right to tell who what to watch. Members of the public will be invited to become film critics for a week and discuss who has the right to judge films.

Lisa Laws, programme director at NLFF, said: “This year’s Northern Lights Film Festival boasts a rollercoaster ride of events that will grab people’s attention and make them experience an emotional reaction whether excitement, fear, sadness, hope, horror or joy.

“Each day of the festival will deliver a chance to listen to tales about different parts of the industry and gain fascinating insights.”

Carol Bell, head of programme development at culture10, added: “The Northern Lights Film Festival has historically attracted a lot of visitors to the region as it is a unique and challenging event that pushes boundaries and questions ideas.

“The programme for this year’s festival will bring together different art forms and has something to appeal to everyone – whether it’s film, people, music or technology that they are most interested in.”

Music and mischief summarises the Northern Lights Film Festival’s closing weekend, with involvement from one of the region’s most successful bands, Maximo Park – more details to be announced soon.

For more information, the latest programme updates and to secure places at Northern Lights Film Festival, which will take place across Newcastle and Durham between 20-28 March 2010, please visit

Northern Lights Film Festival 2010 forms part of NewcastleGateshead’s world-class festival and events programme managed by culture10 and is funded by the Northern Rock Foundation and Northern Film + Media.