Glasgow Film Festival celebrates record figures as David Tennant dubs GFT ‘possibly my favourite cinema in the world’

Nae Pasaran World Premiere
Nae Pasaran World Premiere

DESPITE challenging weather conditions, the fourteenth annual Glasgow Film Festival has reported record attendance figures.

Admissions across the first seven days were nine percent higher than the 2017 event.

The Scottish film event closed on Sunday with a rousing screening of Scottish-made documentary Nae Pasaran.

The feature, by Felipe Bustos Sierra, tells the true story of the East Kilbride factory workers who defied a dictatorship by grounding half of Pinochet’s air-force in the 1970s.

The workers themselves – Bob Fulton, Stuart Barrie, John Keenan and Robert Somerville – were all in attendance at the World Premiere along with Felipe.

Fittingly, the festival’s final screening ended with a standing ovation and some heartfelt speeches from both Chilean representatives and the four workers expressing solidarity and empathy across borders.

2018’s impressive line-up also included appearances from David Tennant, Karen Gillian, Lynne Ramsay, Gemma Arterton and Ben Wheatley.

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Tennant, who attended the festival for the European Premiere of You, Me and Him said: “I am so pleased and proud that we got to premiere You, Me and Him at the GFF. In the GFT, possibly my favourite cinema in the world.

“The Glasgow audience is so engaged and enthusiastic and discerning, it’s the perfect place to celebrate all that is exciting about British film. Thanks for having us!”

Volunteers, staff and organisers have been commended for their commitment and tireless work as they battled to remain operational during the inclement onslaught from the Beast from the East.

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Allison Gardner, Glasgow Film Festival Co-director said:  “Despite the best efforts of the Beast from the East, our fantastic team here pulled together and achieved the herculean task of ‘the show must go on’.”

The festival’s Audience Award was won by Xavier Legrand for Custody, a tense courtroom drama which will be released across the UK from 13 April.

On winning the coveted prize, director Xavier said: “It is a great honour to win this award and my thanks go to the festival and its wonderful audiences for it.

“The festival has a great spirit and sense of community especially in the face of this week’s weather events and myself and the film’s star Denis Menochet hope to revisit again in the coming years, with or without the snow!”