St Albans Film Festival 2014: Programme highlights

10:40 28 April 2014

St Albans Film Festival logo

St Albans Film Festival logo

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Unusual and unexpected venues are one of the main focal points of this year’s second annual St Albans Film Festival, with guests being invited to watch suspense classic Jaws in a swimming pool.

Mamma MiaMamma Mia

Westminster Lodge Leisure Centre will also be hosting a Film and Swim family event in the learner pool on Saturday, May 3, from 1.30 to 3.30pm with the screening of the feature-length animation movie Ponyo.

This year mixes cult classics and movie-buff favourites with family fun and lots of behind-the-scenes magic about how films are made. Here are some of the top family attractions over the weekend:

* The opportunity to meet the much-loved Hedwig of Harry Potter fame (pictured below) who will be putting in a guest appearance at the film festival’s launch event screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds on the evening of Thursday, May 1, at the Cathedral. The film has a 12A certification;

Hedwig the owl on Privet Drive, St AlbansHedwig the owl on Privet Drive, St Albans

* Experts from Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter will be in St Albans to reveal how there is no costume without a character.

The audience will have the opportunity to look at original mood boards and costumes from the Harry Potter film series that bring a character to life. Saturday May 3 10.45-11.45, The Pioneer Club;

* There will be lots of workshops and opportunities to learn about film from every angle, including Sion Hughes from Rights TV talking about how to get your ideas for film or TVB noticed and turned into reality, and Robin Mukherjee, author of The Art of Screenplays: A Writer’s Guide, running sessions for aspiring screenwriters aged 16-plus. Both of these are at Verulamium Museum on Friday, May 2;

* A parent and child screening of Mamma Mia at the Town Hall on Friday, May 2 from 10am-12pm with a special Greek tea and cake;

Harry Potter costumesHarry Potter costumes

* The King and The Mockingbird will be on at the Maltings Arts Theatre from 10am-12noon on Saturday, May 3. Adapted from a fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson about a tyrannical King ruling over the kingdom of Takicardia, The King and The Mockingbird is widely considered to be one of the best animated features of all time. Sponsors, SEO specialists My Mustard, will be handing out treats to the audience;

* One for pre-schoolers, there will be a fun, interactive workshop at the Museum of St Albans from designed to introduce Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream to three to five year-olds;

* BBC Young Musician of the Year finalist Julian Trevelyan will be playing a live piano accompaniment to Chopin’s Shorts films with an introduction to each short by Julian. The Maltings Arts Theatre, Sunday May 4, 12pm-12.40pm;

* Leading UK talent agency boss Warren Bacci will be answering questions from actors about how to get an agent, and what to expect once you have one, and from filmmakers about how to book child or adult actors through an agency at Costa Coffee in St Peter’s Street on Saturday between 7.30-10.30pm.

The King and The MockingbirdThe King and The Mockingbird

The St Albans Film Festival is creating a fun ‘Bird Trail’ throughout the city which anyone can take part in – they just need to pick up a sheet of clues from the festival office inside the Town Hall and they will be taken around the city, hunting for birds.

At each stop a sticker must be collected on the sheet or a question must be answered about the bird.

How to take part:

1. Put a bird in your shop or premises window. It can be any bird you like. Phoenix? Dodo? The choice is yours! Get creative.

2. Pay £50 to take part in the trail. The fee will be sponsorship to help pay for the printing of the Bird Trail forms and a prize for the lucky winners who will be selected at random.

There are just 10 places left on the trail so if you want to be part of it email info@stalbansfilmfestival.com before April 27.

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