Day One @ Clermont Short Film Festival
We’ve arrived and we’re in France, so our first stop is coffee! This is shortly followed by a visit to the Maisonde la Culture where we collect our festival passes and welcome packs – all presented in a brand new bag… We love the festival bags!
It’s clear immediately that this is an incredibly well-oiled machine and is really organised. There’s a pigeonhole for everyone attending where you can exchange messages and invitations, and everyone is very accommodating.
From the festival HQ we head across the road to the Marche du Film (the market) and the Media rendezvous area, where our first meeting is with Litterbugs’ sales agent/distributors Network Ireland Television. It’s been a whistle-stop tour for them, but a very successful one – they were even chased down the street by an eager buyer!
After our meeting we spend some time in the market (the Swiss stand has the best chocolates) and we stop at the UK stand to say hi to the British Film Council, the BFI and Creative England.
Next, there’s time for a spot of lunch before an afternoon of screenings. The attendance at each of these is reassuringly high and for those aimed at families, there are LOTS of VERY excited kids, aged four and up. The programs are packed with really inspiring content – standouts for us were Chemin D’Eau Pour Un Poisson, a beautiful British production, Lucky Chicken, and a greedy chameleon in Our Wonderful Nature – The Common Chameleon.
This was followed by a brisk walk to the Petit Velo, a quirky old theatre at the other end of the city, where there was a packed auditorium for a program including Litterbugs and another – very amorous – chameleon in Darrel. It was really interesting to watch our film with a foreign audience and to see it with subtitles. It’s an education to see which jokes land well, and to see which lines of dialogue are superfluous – even a year after completion, its hard to stop editing!
The day is finished – in true Brit style – with a gin and tonic at the UK stand’s drinks reception where we meet some festival co-ordinators, other filmmakers and the Creative England and British Council teams. It’s been a great day and we’re looking forward to another one tomorrow…