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Enys Men director Mark Jenkin shares his thoughts on the Edinburgh Film Festival

Ahead of the UK Premiere of his latest film Enys Men, I was fortunate to talk with director Mark Jenkin about the film (the full interview will follow at a later date), but it felt critical that we discuss the recent news about Edinburgh Filmhouse, Belmont Filmhouse, and Edinburgh Film Festival, being forced to cease trading, incurring a loss of 102 jobs.

“It’s shocking, it’s a disaster for Edinburgh, for Scotland, and for British screen culture. It’s also scary for everybody involved in cinema, that that can happen. It’s like when the Arclight shut down in the States” [he also mentions Cineworld falling into administration earlier this year].

“I saw Mark Cousins asking for help on Twitter. The first time I met him was in the [Edinburgh Filmhouse] café there. It’s where I met Bill Forsyth. He came up to me after watching Bait and told me how much he loved the film. I’ve got incredible memories of being in Edinburgh, it was where we did the UK premiere. I thought it was incredible, it’s where we hung out every day. I barely saw any of Edinburgh because every waking hour I was sat in there immersing myself in the culture and watching films there. It’s why, when we went on the preview tour with Bait, two months after the release, the first thing on the list was I want to go back to Edinburgh again. It seems surreal to think that something like that can go. But it has to come back quick.”

“Edinburgh [Film Festival] felt like it was the greatest people on the ground holding it together. We need to subsidise, we need safety netting, they [film institutions] need to be allowed to fail at times, and that not to be the final nail in the coffin every time.”

“I always wanted to go to Aberdeen as well, Bait played up there.”

I mention that Enys Men would have likely been playing in the Edinburgh Filmhouse that night as part of the LFF satellite screenings.

“Yeah, and it was planned in for the January tour because I have an affinity with Edinburgh”

Please sign the petition and share your support for these important film institutions: Petition · Save Edinburgh International Film Festival, Filmhouse and Belmont ·


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