“Reel Lives” Returns to Illuminate Diverse Voices at Foyle Film Festival

Short Summary:

Foyle Film Festival introduces "Reel Lives," a month-long programme spotlighting diversity, inclusion, and human rights through critically acclaimed films. Highlights include screenings of "The Teacher's Lounge" and "That They May Face the Rising Sun," along with a special appearance by producer Brendan J. Byrne. The festival features discussions, VR short films, and a partnership with Oska Bright Film Festival for a programme on queer freedom.
Foyle Film Festival
United Kingdom (UK)

This April, the Foyle Film Festival is proud to present the return of "Reel Lives," a dedicated film programme that brings to the forefront a diverse array of perspectives, voices, and stories. Over the course of a month, audiences will be treated to a rich lineup of screenings and events designed to both engage and enlighten.

"Reel Lives" focuses on a wide range of themes including diversity, inclusion, inequality, racism, LGBTQIA+ issues, human rights, and disability awareness. Among the offerings are some of the year's most talked-about films, including preview screenings of the Oscar-nominated "The Teacher's Lounge," a drama that navigates the complexities of racism, class, and prejudice, and the Northern Ireland premiere of "That They May Face the Rising Sun," which has garnered attention with eleven nominations at the Irish Film and Television Academy awards.

This year's "Reel Lives" also highlights the theme of sisterhood within community and family through two films: "Earth Mama" by Savanah Leaf, a BAFTA-winning debut that portrays a single mother's fight against the foster-care system, and "Four Daughters" by Kaouther Ben Hania, an Oscar-nominated film that explores family dynamics and loss following a radical decision by two sisters.

A standout event will be the appearance of Brendan J. Byrne, a Belfast-based, award-winning producer of "That They May Face the Rising Sun," on April 26 at the Nerve Centre. Byrne will present his documentary "In the Shadow of Beirut," followed by a conversation about his career and documentary filmmaking.

The festival also emphasizes the importance of the Northern Ireland Screen’s Digital Film Archive with screenings of community-focused shorts and discussions. Furthermore, a new partnership with the Brighton-based Oska Bright Film Festival introduces a curated selection of shorts from their Queer Freedom strand, celebrating learning-disabled and autistic creatives.

Adding to the festival's variety, "Cinematic Breakfasts" offer attendees the pleasure of enjoying classic cinema with their morning coffee and croissant, featuring films such as a 4K restoration of "East of Eden," "Arsenic & Old Lace," and "Dial M for Murder."

"Reel Lives" at the Foyle Film Festival is a testament to the power of cinema in promoting understanding and inclusion. It stands as an invitation to all for a month of thought-provoking and inclusive film celebration. For more details on the programme, tickets, and event specifics, attendees are encouraged to visit the festival's official website.