February 2nd 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WOW Film Festival brings “Tales from the Silk Road” to Wales
Opening on Tuesday 13 March in Taliesin Arts Centre, Swansea, then traveling to Aberystwyth, Cardiff, Oswestry, and Mold.
The much loved WOW “Wales One World” Film Festival returns this March for its seventeenth edition, bringing its eclectic celebration of world cinema to local cinemas across Wales.
The festival has a strong track record in showcasing the voices of women filmmakers around the world, and in 2018 50% of the films in the festival programme have been awarded the “F-Rated” stamp of approval. The F-Rated scheme champions women in film and the F-Rating is awarded to films that have either been directed or written by a woman. Among the exceptional F-Rated films in the 2018 WOW Film Festival are the magnificent Israfil from Iran, Valeska Grisebach’s Western, Palestinian filmmaker Annemarie Jacir’s Wajib, Kaouther Ben Hania’s Beauty and the Dogs and Sonia Kronlund’s amazing documentary about Afghanistan’s greatest film director, The Prince of Nothingwood.
A special focus for the 2018 edition of WOW Film Festival is ‘Tales from the Silk Road’ This cinematic journey follows the ancient trade networks from China through Mongolia and Central Asia to the Mediterranean, and is a rare chance to explore a whole new world of cinema that’s seldom seen in the UK. It includes the gorgeous Heavenly Nomadic from Kyrgyzstan, which opens the festival at Taliesin Arts Centre, Swansea; the stunning Foxtrot; and the intriguing The Gulls from Europe’s only Buddhist country, Kalmykia, where an amazing mix of cultures live side by side. There are also three films from China, the fabulously deadpan, Free & Easy, the smart Tarantino-like animation, Have A Nice Day, and for children, the awesome Big Fish & Begonia.
‘Tales from the Silk Road’ showcases several films from Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan curated by Birgit Beumers, a Professor in Film Studies at Aberystwyth University and an expert on Central Asian cinema. “The five “stans”, or republics of Central Asia – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan – have a long and rich history thanks to their central location on the Silk Road,” says Birgit, “ they are a bridge between West and East, their cultural heritage brings together nomadic with settled cultures, Turkic languages with Farsi, and indeed, their jewellery combines corals transported from the seas with silver mined from the mountain ranges that cross the region.”
“I am enormously grateful to Birgit Beumers for unearthing some truly special films from countries that we very rarely get to see on screen,” says WOW Film Festival Director David Gillam, “so sit back and wend your way across the desert sands and high mountain passes on a trip along the Silk Road.”
The WOW Festival never fails to showcase the best of the best world cinema of the last 12 months. Cannes Palme d’Or winner The Square directed by Ruben Oslund and starring Claes Bang, Elisabeth Moss, and Dominic West is a wickedly funny and bracingly surreal satire on the pretensions of high art. While Venice Film Festival winner Foxtrot from Israeli director Samuel Maoz depicts the devastating impact of conscription on a young man, his friends and family.
“It's always good to see different takes on a situation so as well as Wajib that focuses on the Palestinian Christian community, we’re showing the Israeli film Foxtrot that was simply the most powerful film I saw last year” says WOW Film Festival Director David Gillam.
Always looking to explore new places and connect with new audiences, 2018’s WOW Film Festival takes on two new venues, the luxurious boutique Cinema at Tramshed in Cardiff’s Grangetown and Kinokulture, a wonderful community cinema just over the border in Shropshire’s Oswestry.
WOW Film Festival opens at Taliesin Arts Centre on Tuesday 13 March before heading to Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Kinokulture in Oswestry, Tramshed Cinema in Cardiff and Theatr Clwyd in Mold. See www.wowfilmfestival.com for full details.
March 13 - 15 Taliesin Arts Centre, Swansea
March 15 - 21 Aberystwyth Arts Centre
March 15 - 29 Kinokulture, Oswestry
March 22 - 24 Tramshed Cinema, Cardiff
April 3 - 12 Theatr Clwyd, Mold
With the support of the BFI Film Festival Fund, awarding funds from The National Lottery. and Ffilm Cymru Wales.
For all press enquiries, interviews and images, contact Rhowan Alleyne,