Top picks not to miss at Encounters Film Festival


Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival returns to Bristol from 19-24 September

Now in its 23rd year, this much loved Bristol event is a qualifying festival for the Oscars, BAFTAs, Cartoon D’or and European Film Awards and never disappoints thanks to its diversity of genres from sci-fi to documentary with content ranging from educational and informative to the down-right risqué.   

With over 400 films to choose from here is our guide to the top picks not to miss out on:

Join the creator of ‘Despicable Me’ Minions:

Discover the origins of these universally loved characters with this masterclass from Pierre Coffin, the creator who gave life and voices to the Minions. The fantastic French animator will be giving insights into the making of the films and what inspired him to come up with their wonderfully bizarre language.

Thursday 21st September, 20:30, Arnolfini 

Best of British talent: 

‘Playback’ is a touring exhibition that showcases the concerns and visions of a diverse pool of young people working in film today. Shining a spotlight on emerging talent, expect narrative films about drag queens, super-heroes, job centres and zombies, along with poetry and spoken word features about feminism, age and identity. In association with Random Acts, all of the award-winning short films were created by 16–24 year olds.

Wednesday 20th September, Watershed

Join in a Wifi War

WiFi Wars is the World Record-Breaking live comedy game show where the entire audience play along. Login with your smartphone or tablet (make sure you’ve got plenty of battery) and compete in a range of games, quizzes and challenges to win the show, and prizes!

Wednesday 20th September, 20.00, Arnolfini

Screenings for all the family:

This year Encounters Festival will take a family friendly turn on Saturday 23rd September at Watershed. The programme includes an extended interactive version of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, a screening of short films selected for children by children and two half-hour screenings based on Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes. Great for big or small kids!

Saturday 23rd September, Watershed

Soul of a Nation

The Tate Modern has commissioned a series of original films, created by black filmmakers and directors about African American artists in the civil rights movement. These short films are presented alongside Tate Modern’s latest exhibition, Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, and shine a bright light on the vital contribution of black artists during the civil rights movement.

Wednesday 20th September, 18:00, Arnolfini

Desert Island Flicks

It is unlikely Encounters will ever have a more apt desert island castaway than this year’s very special guest, Academy Award® winner Michael Dudok de Wit. ‘The Red Turtle’ is one of the most outstanding animation films of recent years. Michaël has a long record of producing beautiful short films and has selected his favourite shorts and clips that he would like to take to a desert island.

Thursday 21st September, 18:00, Arnolfini  

Discover a brand new immersive VR cinema:

Immersive Encounters brings the best of virtual and augmented reality as audiences can enjoy four days of collaborative viewing experiences at the Watershed’s VR cinema. Touching on disquieting topical issues, ‘The Last Moments’ is a film which explores assisted suicide, whilst ‘Bosch VR’ takes viewers on a virtual trip through The Garden of Earthly Delights with its celebration of one of the world’s greatest artists, Hieronymus Bosch.

Various screenings, Watershed: Waterside 3. 

3D Holographic show from an AV pioneer: 

Holotronica is a brand new 3D Holographic show from electronic musician, AV producer and visual artist, Stuart Warren-Hill.  The futuristic music/VR crossover piece, uses Holo-Gauze, his own invention that is taking the world by storm for a 3D experience like you have never seen before!

Friday 22nd September, 20:30, Arnolfini






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