GFT Blog: ICO Screening Days

It doesn’t get much better for a film fanatic than getting to spend a weekend in the cinema, binging on a plentiful array of movies and that is exactly what I got to experience recently when attending the ICO’s screening days at the wonderful BFI Southbank.

Screening days are a really good opportunity for programmers, organisers and marketers to see titles set for release over the following months and the ICO did not disappoint by providing a diverse line-up of films.

Among my choices was Nora Twomey’s solo feature debut, The Breadwinner, In the Fade and A'Ciambra, all of which will be showing at GFT in the near future and I would definitely recommend catching all of them if you can!

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As well as the quality of films on show, the effort that the staff put into the screening days shone through. Their friendly team was always on hand to help, the venue was adequately signposted and announcements were made in the waiting areas before each movie was due to start to ensure attendees didn’t miss anything that they wanted to see. 

On the Saturday night, there was also a drinks reception, hosted by Filmbankmedia, which gave me the opportunity to chat to some of the other attendees about what they had watched that day. There was plenty of alcohol to go around and let’s just say it helped the conversation to flow pretty easily! It definitely sparked some interesting debates for sure.

It was also just a good chance to meet like-minded people from around the country and introduce myself as who knows where or when we might cross paths again.

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Another thing to note was the venue itself, which was great! Just a short walk from the London Eye and overlooking the River Thames made for some nice surrounding scenery although sadly it was quite dull and overcast over the weekend. But on a positive note, it was the perfect weather for cinemagoers so I couldn’t complain. Inside there are 3 main screens as well as a smaller studio space and I spent my time moving between the 3 bigger screens. Each screen has it’s own unique layout and charm due to their varying sizes and I would not want to have to say what my favourite was because I genuinely liked them all!

Downstairs in the main foyer you will also find the BFI shop, which is a complete minefield for anyone who loves film. Aside from a massive selection of dvd/blu-rays, vinyl soundtracks and books they also have a great selection of quirky film related gifts. Luckily I managed to show some restraint otherwise I would have walked away from the weekend in severe debt!

Overall, it was a very enjoyable weekend and although spending so much time in the cinema can be tiring it is definitely worth it and I can’t recommend these types of events highly enough.

Chris Kumar
Programme Assistant

To find out more about ICO Screening Days, please click here

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