The Harrogate Advertiser had the pleasure of sponsoring an award at the first Harrogate Film Festival - but that was only a small part of the debut event’s success story.
Special movie events saw zombies taking over Harrogate’s oldest bars, Night at the Museum screened for parents and their young ones inside the Royal Pump Room Museum and 708 entries submitted from all over the world for its short film competition.
And the good news for film fans is planning is in an advanced stage already to repeat the event next year.
Adam Chandler, director of the festival, declared Harrogate Film Festival a huge success with 16 events, five of which sold out and hundreds of people in attendance across the eight venues.
He said: “The first film festival went down extremely well with our audiences.
“People in the audience at the screening of Shaun of the Dead at Hales Bar said “We loved it”.
“Parents at Night at the Museum at the Royal Pump Room Museum asked me afterwards “when are you doing more of this? It’s great fun”.
The sponsor-led festival ran for three days at venues including Everyman, Revolucion de Cuba and Harrogate Theatre Hive.
In total, 23 local and national businesses came together to put on the first-such festival for the local Harrogate community.
As well as offering a fun way to the enjoy cinema-going, Harrogate Film Festival went to some lengths to support fledgling filmmakers.
Sunday night’s closing gala at the Crown Hotel, saw the independent filmmakers competition sponsored by Raworths Solicitors and Everyman Cinema won by young Portuguese director Pedro Nogueira for his emotional drama Livre who sent a thank-you message by video.
Bradford-based independent film director David Gilbert, who makes stunning short filrms on tiny budgets, won the Audience Choice Award sponsored by Raworths, with his witty and blood-splattered thriller Polterheist.
He also received the Critics Choice Award for his comedy Working Late from the Harrogate Advertiser’s Graham Chalmers.
Harrogate Film Society stalwarts Henry Thompson and Brian Madden also presented an award, as did Harrogate Everyman Cinema’s Anna Coates and Chelsea Talbot and Raworths’ marketing and business development manager Katrina McCluskie.
The filmmaking workshop went down a treat, led by Rad Miller from Pocket Projects who collaborates with Channel 4.
Miller’s session at Harrogate Theatre’s HIVE workspace showed an enthralled audience members how to plan, film and edit within a two-hour workshop where the participants, working in groups, ended up with three complete films.
The festival will certainly return said its dynamic young founder Adam Chandler, who owns Harrogate-based production company Reel Film.
He said: “I was delighted to present an event in the town with so much innovation, diversity and audience reach.
“There truly was something for everyone and I can’t wait to announce our events for 2018 later this year.”