Long-awaited sequel of the St Albans Film Festival

PUBLISHED: 18:32 24 April 2014

St Albans Film Festival 2014

St Albans Film Festival 2014


St Albans has been a mecca for film and movie-makers for decades; from the very first and soon-to-be reinstated cinema on London Road, to Stanley Kubrick choosing the district as a base from which to complete his creations, or even Tom Cruise popping into a city centre restaurant for a curry – it seems the city and its surrounding villages can’t escape the cinematic spotlight.

So it should have come as no surprise at the start of 2013 when local actress and casting director Leoni Kibbey first revealed her blockbuster idea for a citywide festival celebrating all things film.

To say the festival director has brought “coolness” to the city would be an understatement.

Last year alone welcomed pre-release screenings, a famed Hollywood stuntman and even Stanley Kubrick’s widow Christiane, with 2014’s listings set to dazzle yet again – so much so the festival has been extended by a day.

From May 1 to 4 St Albans will once again morph into a movie fanatic’s playground with a programme of events ready to entertain, educate, or in the case of last year’s immersive cinema experience at the clock tower, provide some escapism.

Full length screenings being shown to the city’s cultural crusaders include an uncut version of Lars Von Trier’s newly released Nymphomaniac, the legendary The Birds by Alfred Hitchcock, and the poignant adoption drama Philomena – based on St Albans resident Philomena Lee – with the latter two films contributing to the festival’s themes of birds and women.

Each day will be a mixture of opportunities for ticket holders and Leoni insists guests will be hard pressed not to find an event that takes their fancy: “There is something for all tastes. Whether you are a general film fan who loves blockbusters with a chance to see one in a unique venue or whether you love experiencing brilliant indie films.

“There are workshops for pro-filmmakers and for anyone wanting to try filmmaking for the first time. We have family events and special over 18s events and lots in between.”

Families will be able to enjoy a Harry Potter workshop in conjunction with the Warner Bros. studio tour in Watford, while those musically inclined can be blown away by the inimitable sounds of Cassette Boy.

The duo, that mix up samples and sound bites from TV shows such as The Apprentice, will be performing a special pre-Glastonbury gig at the breathtaking Cathedral opening party, as well as the closing awards ceremony to recognise the main film competition winners.

Happy memories of last year are still fresh in the festival director’s mind: “It was overwhelming to see screenings packed and the city buzzing with visiting filmmakers and film fans.

“I loved the buzzing festival office and it became clear we had a success when lots of the ‘in competition’ filmmakers arrived from as far as Spain and the USA.”

And with just two months until the curtain is the raised on the second festival, the mum-of-two can’t wait for all the event’s surprises to be unveiled: “We create a real festival buzz in the city and love a good party too.

“Plus we attract some great names in filmmaking so it’s a chance to rub shoulders with some very interesting people.”

The event can once again count on the support of the Herts Advertiser as media sponsor, and editor Matt Adams added: “This event has contributed so much to putting St Albans on the cultural map of the UK, and we are proud to again be giving it our full backing.

“As the only local newspaper based in St Albans, and a long-term campaigner for the return of a cinema to our great city, it’s the perfect match for us.”


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Royston Crow visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Royston Crow staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Royston Crow account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 14:57

Herts historians marking the First World War’s centenary are to craft a state-of-the-art online archive after today receiving a £99,800 National Lottery grant.

Yesterday, 08:32

A pair of childhood friends, from Melbourn and Cambridge, have got together to write a children’s book, which is now set to hit the shelves of a Cambridge bookshop.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Quizzers from Royston businesses, clubs and societies are invited to get together in teams of four to six people to take part in a quiz night organised by the town’s Chamber of Commerce.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

With Mother’s Day tomorrow you may be needing some (very) last minute inspiration – or why not have a few ideas up your sleeve for next year? Here are 10 ways to spend it in North Hertfordshire.


Most read stories


Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Read the Royston Crow e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter