In just a few weeks time the Encounters Film Festival will be celebrating their 19th successful year.

In that time they have played host to an array of diverse live action shorts and animations from across the globe. A unique springboard for filmmakers of varying experience and backgrounds, the Bristol-based event continues to promote an eclectic mix of films that are enjoyed by a broad spectrum of audiences and insiders alike.

In the run-up to next month’s festival, which will launch on 17th September, we thought it only too appropriate to give you the lowdown on what to expect from this year’s line-up that will screen over 200 international films from 40 participating countries during its eagerly anticipated week-long stint. Previous winners have gone on to secure entry into the OSCARS and BAFTA’s, underlining the independent festival’s importance in the worldwide filmmaking scene.

Showcasing homegrown talent in the form of Hunger favourite Jody Whittaker and the legendary Alan Rickman, Dust is a creepy tale from directors Ben Ockrent and Jake Russell with an unexpected twist that will keep viewers guessing until the end. The festival will also be welcoming back several Encounters veterans such as Chris Shepherd who will be presenting The Ringer, as well as John Smith whose fascinating documentary Dad’s Stick centres around his father’s artistic perfectionist tendencies. Also keep an eye out for Ben Whishaw and Mackenzie Crook who will appear in Beat and No Kaddish in Camarthen respectively, and promise to be equally gripping viewing.

Leading the way in the animated shorts category will be Sundance winner Tony Donoghue’s Irish Folk Furniture as well as BAFTA award winner Will Anderson who will be entering his latest offering Sweetie and Sunshine. Collabora8te will also be fully represented with their darkly touching animation The Hungry Corpse featuring the voices of Bill Nighy and Stephen Mangan – and not forgetting the selection of formidable stop motion films that will also be on show… well, Bristol is the home of Aardman, after all.

As if that weren’t enough the festival will be airing a digitally-remastered 25th Anniversary screening of the 1988 classic Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, which also happens to mark the 80th birthday of the man responsible for bringing the iconic characters to life, Richard Williams – as well as getting proceedings off to a suitably stellar start. It might be wise to get those passes purchased now.

Encounters 2013 will run between 17th and 22nd September. For more information please visit www.encounters-festival.org.uk

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