Last year’s showcase featured some huge talent in the industry, including Manchester born Natalie Kennedy making her feature directorial debut with the Black Mirror-esque film Blank. This year Manchester Film Festival (MANIFF) is set to be even bigger with the line-up including huge actors such as Nicolas Cage, Timothy Spall, Gemma Arterton and Juliet Rylance.
Taking place at the ODEON in the Great Northern Warehouse between March 10 and 19, this year’s festival will showcase over 140 short films including 32 world premieres. Attendees can expect six feature film world premieres and 17 feature film UK premieres alongside screenings, Q&As and more. Local talent will also be on show with three sessions of North West Shorts, which is the most ever screened at the festival.
Opening the festival will be British film Rye Lane – a romantic comedy about two twenty-somethings both reeling from bad break-ups, who connect over the course of an eventful day. Rye Lane will be making its world debut at the Sundance film festival before having its UK Festival premiere at MANIFF on Friday 12th March at 7pm. Cast and crew will be in attendance for a post-screening discussion and audience Q&A after the screening.
Stockport actress Kelly Wenham stars in Dan Clarke’s A Kind of Kidnapping, about a young, broke couple who kidnap a sleazy politician who decides he can spin the story to his own advantage. Manchester based production company Old Hall Films present Wait For Me, about a young woman dragged into a life of crime after arriving in England from Ireland. Love Without Walls is about a young couple who, after struggling to pay their rent, find themselves lost in the underbelly of life on the streets.
Bolan’s Shoes, starring Manchester Film Festival alumni Timothy Spall and the directorial debut of Ian Puleston-Davies (Coronation Street, Tin Star), captures glam rock mania through the experiences of a group of kids before a road accident changes their lives. Years later survivor Penny takes best friend and fellow Marc Bolan fan to visit his shrine in London, but a chance encounter catapults her back to the horror she had tried to forget.
Rounding out the narrative world premieres is Snorkeling, which sees a teenage romance blossom just as a new hallucinogenic drug hits the streets. The film is the feature debut of renowned music video director Emil Nava, who has shot videos for Ed Sheeran, Eminem, Calvin Harris and more and stars Funny Pages‘ Daniel Zohlgari. In the documentary section there will be the world premiere of The Road of Excess, which follows the stars of early noughties cult TV show Dirty Sanchez and examines the consequences the show had on their lives.
UK premiere highlights at Manchester Film Festival include:
- Everything I Ever Wanted To Tell My Daughter About Men, a collection of 23 short stories, directed by 23 female directors in support of Survivors of Abuse.
- Horror film Anacoreta starring and produced by Antonia Thomas (The Good Doctor, Misfits).
- Jill- Life Will Find You starring Juliet Rylance (Sinister) and Tom Pelphry (Ozark).
- Manchester premieres include the Nicolas Cage starring western Butcher’s Crossing, about a young Harvard dropout seeks his destiny out West by tying his fate to a team of buffalo hunters.
Manchester Film Festival 2023 will take place 10th-19th March at the Odeon Great Northern. Discover the full film schedule here.