BEVFF09’s Roaring Success Proves Audience Appetite for Female Talent

BEVFF09’s Roaring Success Proves Audience Appetite for Female Talent

Sally Hawkins, Rachel Millward and Gurinder Chadha at the Opening Night Gala

Sally Hawkins, Rachel Millward and Gurinder Chadha at the Opening Night Gala

The 2009 Birds Eye View film festival has been resting peacefully for over a month now. And what a hugely successful festival it was. Festival Director Rachel Millward sums it up.

This was Birds Eye View’s (and therefore my…) fifth festival. It was the first since we won the UK Film Council’s film festivals funding, but also our first since the credit crunch took away sponsors we’d nurtured in the finance sector, so the twelve month run-up was a rollercoaster to say the least!

But the fantastically gratifying fact is that audiences flocked to all events, nearly 11,000 of you altogether. Our box office stats show an average of around 90% capacity – the majority of events through festival week selling out. The average audience rating across all films and events was 4.5 out of 5. And, demonstrating fresh outreach, 83% of the audience were new to Birds Eye View this year, 98% said they would come again.

Festival Audience at the BFI Southbank

Festival Audience at the BFI Southbank

This is a huge compliment to Birds Eye View, to the strength of our programming, the appeal of the brand and the success of our grass-roots marketing campaign. Three cheers to team BEV! It is also a huge vote of confidence in female talent. There is a clearly strong and ever-increasing market demand for a better balance of content on our screens.

So, Birds Eye View will plough on and keep pushing towards our goal of equality,  exploring new ways to connect audiences with the best women filmmakers from across the globe.

THANK YOU all for coming to the festival in droves, as you did, and making our fifth birthday festival every bit as magic as we’d hoped.

b_19DJ Pearl at the Opening Night PartySally Phillips, Zina Saro Wiwa and Andrea Riseborough at the Closing Night Awards Party

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To take a look through all our festival pics, go to our flickr page.

And if you missed the huge amount of festival press coverage (including major features in The Times, The Independent, Screen International and several leading magazines), you can find some of it on our press page.

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