Barwell Business Park sponsoring inaugural Kingston International Film Festival

Barwell Business Park has become a founding supporter of the Kingston International Film Festival.

The exciting venture, born out of a partnership between Blue Elephant Films and the Rose Theatre, will run from Thursday 24 to Sunday 26 June 2022. It will include screenings, workshops and masterclasses, Q&As, networking, social events, schools and community projects.

Vanessa Redgrave CBE and Mike Newell are festival patrons, with ambassadors including Marina Sirtis (Star Trek), Dougray Scott (Mission Impossible), Rupert Gregson-Williams (Composer Wonder Woman), Jason Wong (The Gentlemen), Jeremy James Taylor OBE (Founder of National Youth Music Theatre) and Robert Young (Director Fierce Creatures).

Ken Butcher, Asset Manager, Aviva Investors, said: “We’re really pleased to be supporting the Kingston International Film Festival. Barwell Business Park is a key employer in Kingston upon Thames and we are keen to invest in initiatives that enhance the borough’s cultural offer, as well as supporting the Rose, a remarkable, cultural institution within the community.”

The festival aims to support and promote the UK independent film industry, and in particular to identify and nurture emerging talent and to encourage investment into the industry.

The long-term ambition is to build the festival into an internationally recognised event showcasing the work of the world’s leading international filmmakers as well as becoming the premier platform for discovering remarkable new British talent. Supporters include Kingston University and the Odeon Cinema as well as the Royal Borough of Kingston who have awarded a funding grant.

David Cunningham, Founder and Festival Director, said: “We are a nation of great film-makers; from David Lean, Powell and Pressburger, to Mike Newell and Danny Boyle, ours is a rich cultural history which is a big part of our national identity.

“And if the indies where these award-winning directors cut their teeth disappear, so too do opportunities for young producers and directors, writers, DOPs [Directors of Photography], and crew who find their voice on small movies, learn their craft, and forge the next generation of filmmakers. There will be no one coming through to shore up our industry. The consequence? Well, the colossal international production machines will import talent or, worse still, take their money and migrate to another country.

“But more tragically, we will lose a huge part of our national heritage. We simply can’t let this business fade quietly into the dark.”

Visit the festival’s website for more information.