VIDEO PREVIEW: Sir Lenny Henry, Louis Theroux and Ian Hislop to speak at Sheffield Doc/Fest

Comedy icon Sir Lenny Henry, TV documentary star Louis Theroux and satirist Ian Hislop are amongst the high profile special guests coming to this year's Sheffield Doc/Fest.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 4th May 2017, 9:46 pm
Updated Sunday, 4th June 2017, 9:37 pm
Sir Lenny Henry is making his Sheffield Doc/Fest debut.
Sir Lenny Henry is making his Sheffield Doc/Fest debut.

The city's late great rock and blues legend Joe Cocker and Yorkshire's tragic murdered MP Jo Cox are subjects of two of the 182 documentaries and short films to feature at the 24th annual festival, from June 9 to 14.

It is a showcase for the world's best documentaries, virtual reality and interactive experiences.

For programme details visit

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Sheffield Doc/Fest, now in its 24th year, widely recognised as a global leading documentary film-making festival and the UK’s premier event of its kind, will host 153 premieres from the UK, Europe and around the world.

Doc/Fest, based at Sheffield's Showroom cinema, will also see screenings and talks across the city, including use of the brand new The Light Cinema on The Moor, two outside pop up screens, the Free Screen on Tudor Square and The Light Free Screen on Howard Street. The Abbeydale Picturehouse and The Leadmill will also host special event screenings.

It will again put the spotlight on 26 state-of-the-art alternate realities projects, with eight immersive virtual reality and nine interactive installations from eight different countries in the Alternate Realities Exhibition at The Millennium Gallery.

Sheffield City Hall will host the opening evening event, the world premiere of Daisy Asquith’s documentary Queerama - to mark 50 years since the Sexual Offences Act. It is about relationships, desires, fears and expressions of gay men and women since 1919 against a backdrop of lyrics and music by John Grant, who will attend to give a short live performance.

Sir Lenny Henry is making his Sheffield Doc/Fest debut.

On the final day of the six-day Festival, Doc/Fest honours the Yorkshire MP Jo Cox with a special closing night world premiere screening of Toby Paton’s Jo Cox: Death of an MP, followed by a discussion about Jo’s legacy.

To celebrate the life Jo Cox MP, who was the Labour Party Member of Parliament for Batley and Spen, festivalgoers and Sheffield folk will be invited to join a lunchtime picnic street party at Doc/Fest Exchange on Tudor Square.

The line-up is revealed today. First time guests include Sir Lenny Henry, in conversation with June Sarpong MBE to talk about campaigning for change through humour and his passion for blues music.

Louis Theroux and Nick Broomfield will be in conversation during an extended Q&A following the screening of Whitney Can I Be Me, which explores the career and complicated life of Whitney Houston, at the Crucible Theatre on Sunday, June 11

Toby Patons Jo Cox: Death of an MP will get its world premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest

Have I Got New For You TV quiz show star and Private Eye editor Ian Hislop, talking with Jolyon Rubinstein, will explore the fundamental role that satire plays in documenting our world and searching for the truth.

Liz McIntyre CEO & Festival Director, announcing the festival programme at a launch at Curzon cinema in Sheffield, said: “This year at Doc/Fest, we’re thrilled to be bringing the most extraordinary and inspiring stories, born out of this time of seismic change. From remarkable new talents to world renowned greats, documentary and Alternate Realities storytellers are converging on Sheffield to show their work both maverick and influential, funny and quirky, heart stopping and heart breaking."

For more details visit

Television documentary star Louis Theroux
Sir Lenny Henry is making his Sheffield Doc/Fest debut.
Toby Patons Jo Cox: Death of an MP will get its world premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest
Television documentary star Louis Theroux