Festival History

bfmiff2015 / bringing the unseen to light

This is Our Story

THE BFM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL returns once again to bring the magic of black world cinema to London.

From Africa, USA, North and South America to the Caribbean we bring you the best fiction documentaries, shorts and animation many of which have never been seen in the UK.

The Festival is the home for UK filmmakers to have their work recognized and showcased to diverse audiences. The bfmiff is also the place where the film/TV industry meet the black independent film sector through our seminars and workshop.

The bfmiff name has become synonymous with providing a platform for black world cinema and highlighting British talent. Started and founded by iconic director, Menelik Shabazz in 1999, the Festival was borne alongside the leading UK industry bfm Magazine. In its earlier years, this energising Festival attracted professionals in the form of Charles Thompson MBE (Festival Director).

There are too many others to list here, but we are grateful for their contribution. They helped the festival reach its many successes.

Through the years bfmiff provided airing of films from countries to include Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Trinidad & Tobago, Germany, South Africa, Brazil and Cuba – to name a few.

UK-released films and directors also saw recognition, including Rita Gayle (Trace; 2007), Julius Amedume (A Goat’s Tail; 2006), Q (Deadmeat; 2007), Gillian Salmon (Trippy; 2007), Aneel Ahmad (Boot Polish; 2007), Shola Amoo (Knife Trends LDN; 2007) and Dewi Bruce-Konuah (Gone2Soon; 2007).

bfmiff added an awards strand which saw accolades in ‘Best Cinematography’, ‘Best Short Film’, ‘Best International Feature’ and ‘Best Music Video’ categories. Crucially, the Festival included workshops and seminars. These industry facilitated assemblies provided spaces, which introduced experienced and newbie alike into the industry’s workings.

Our workshops and seminars were our pledge to support and nurture burgeoning filmmaking and performance talent. To this end, bfmiff was enabled through support to include Skillset, Kodak and the BBC. Screening venues – an element, without which there’d be no Festival! These came from established places to include Stratford Circus, the Institute of Contemporary Arts, BFI, British Museum and Odeon West End.

Now that we’re back for our 12th event, we hope you’ll stay close as we embark upon a significant extension of an important road.

bfmiff: 10th Anniversary Trailer

A Celebration of Black British Actors