The third Annual Barnes Film Festival closed this Sunday after a show stopping weekend with a pre-release screening of Toby MacDonald’s Old Boys, where the audience were joined by cast and crew.

The Festival kicked off on Friday at the Olympic Cinema, with a Q&A with Kevin MacDonald and a screening of his new film, Whitney, a biopic about the late, great singer.

The brand new Screening Room of the Olympic, which opened for the festival, was used to showcase new, up and coming talent over the course of the weekend.

The festival also included a number of different workshops for enthusiasts of the film industry, from cinematography to foley sound. The BFF engages with local people as well as a national audience and this is reflected in a range of venues that covered every corner of Barnes.

Over 300 film entries into the short film competition saw young filmmakers from schools, colleges and universities from all over the UK screened in age group categories, under 12s, 13-18 and 19+, with winners being awarded prizes from industry judges hailing from Film4, BFI and UKTV.

The festival was also very proud to welcome Vanessa Redgrave, who was interviewed by Frank Gardener of the BBC, before showing her new powerful documentary on war-zone fleeing refugees, Sea Sorrow.

Attendees included festival patrons George Mackay and Steven Moffat for interviews and thought provoking debate.

The inspirational female panel helped the festival’s goal of diversifying the next generation of filmmakers, including prominent female members of the film industry Candace ONyeama, Sue Vertue, Rebecca Frayn, Diana Phillips and Anushka Kishani Naamyakkara.

The festival has grown significantly since its 2016 inaugural year, with over 1500 people in attendance, 350 of which attended the sold out open-air screening of The Greatest Showman (complete with fire-juggling clown and flash mob).

Festival Director, Samuel Cullis said, “For me, what’s exciting is that as Barnes Film Festival grows, so does its power to reach different audiences. The festival aims to inspire a new generation of filmmakers from all backgrounds and Britain’s young filmmakers now have a distinctive annual festival that’s firmly rooted in Barnes and which people in South West London can all get behind.”