Alan Moore, Ambassadors, Article, Arts Connect West Midlands, Black Country, Bonfire night, British Cinema, British Film Institute, Cinema, David Lloyd, Facebook, Film, Film Ambassadors, Film Article, Graphic Novel, Guy Fawkes, Hugo Weaving, James McTeigue, Light House Media Centre, Masks, Natalie Portman, Screening, The Wachowskis, Twitter, V For Vendetta, V masks, West Midlands, Wolverhampton
In 2014, the Light House Media Centre in the city of Wolverhampton launched a new programme run by young people, specifically those between 16-25 years of age, who are interested in British cinema. I am part of it, along with approximately seven others, and each of us specialise in the world of cinema, some of us being graduates, current students and visiting lecturers. This collaboration of young film buffs are now referred as Film Ambassadors and our role is to organise event screenings of British films on a monthly basis, and to draw in a wider audience for our country’s film industry. Although we work with Light House on these events, we are also associated with Arts Connect West Midlands and the British Film Institute. We may be screening different kinds of British films but our objectives for each event are to not only promote British cinema and heighten new experiences but also the Film Ambassadors and work of Light House Media Centre.
The reason we have decided to screen British cinema instead of mainstream Hollywood is because the Light House usually screen independent films and the UK film industry are known for that style. In addition, Light House are an independent cinema anyway and are somewhat different to Cineworld, Showcase and Odeon; however, due to its smaller venue capacity and other events, they have a somewhat mature spectators. We wanted to widen our audience by attracting other young people, like ourselves, to the Light House and watching British films.
Our first screening took place on the evening of November 5, 2014 with a special Bonfire Night screening of V For Vendetta. The film is an adaptation from a comic book by Alan Moore and David Lloyd. It loosely retells the infamous Gunpowder Plot of 1605 involving Guy Fawkes’ attempt to blow the Houses of Parliament. V (Hugo Weaving) is a masked vigilante with Fawkes-like ambitions to destroy the corrupt government and more importantly, to get revenge on them for their wrongdoings against him. It is basically a more comical and dystopian version of Fawkes’ tale. Still, because we, Film Ambassadors, knew Bonfire Night was coming and the film loosely orientates the incident, we decided to screen that.
We wanted to promote our first screening with reference to V For Vendetta. In fact, I came up with the idea to bring Guy Fawkes’ masks identical to those seen in the film and if you do, there will be a ticket discount included. We seeked a positive first-impression and our creativity in this respect became successful. Furthermore, we were serving black cocktails in the Lock Works Café, resembling V’s costume and one of the film’s thematic colours.
Our pre-booking tickets went on sale from October 29th and we sold a total of twenty-six on the actual evening. For our first Ambassadors’ screening, that is not a bad target at all but for us to increase that and to promote British cinema even more, we will need the help and support of our audience.
So, in order for this to happen, please keep an eye out for updates at the Light House. Our next screening could be a British Christmas film scheduled to take place in December. We will decide the film in the upcoming weeks.
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If you’d like to get in contact with me directly, here is my Twitter: