By Berwyn Rowlands
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04 December 2018
• 2019 tour starts in Llandudno Junction, before visiting Newcastle, Manchester, Brighton and Bournemouth
• Lebanese director and 2018 Iris Prize winner Lara Zeidan to return to Wales to attend Llandudno Junction film festival
• 19 short films up for the 3rd Iris Community & Education Awards Short Film Awards

Award-winning films, award-winning filmmakers and the best community and education work produced in Wales are confirmed for Iris on the Move 2019, as the three-day film festival returns to Cineworld in Llandudno Junction on 23 January 2019.

The highlight of opening night is the North Wales premiere of 1985, which takes us back to the early days of the HIV/AIDS crisis. Adrian returns from Manhattan to his conservative, Christian family in Texas, and a warm welcome from his mother, but a frostier one from his father. The moving film was presented with the Best Feature Award at the 2018 Iris Prize Festival.

Much anticipated Rafiki is also screening as part of the festival. The lesbian love story was the first Kenyan film to be included in the Un Certain Regard section in Cannes earlier this year and was then controversially banned from being shown in Kenya by the Kenya Film Classification Board.

The 2019 programme also includes more short films than ever. The line-up includes Three Centimetres by Lebanese filmmaker, Lara Zeidan (pictured above) who will be interviewed on stage following the screening to talk about her Iris Prize winning film. She will also be joined by Iris Best British winner, Claire Lawrie who will also be in conversation after the screening of her film, BEYOND ‘There’s always a black issue Dear’. There will also be a programme of short films looking at intimacy in LGBT+ relationships and Gender and Family - a selection of trans stories.

Andrew Pierce, Iris Prize Chair, commented:
“It is important that Iris engages with audiences across the UK. I’m thrilled that during 2019 we will be adding Bournemouth to our list of destinations as Iris on the Move returns to Llandudno Junction, Newcastle, Manchester and Brighton.”

Lewis Bayley, BFS Industry Liaison, commented:
“We’re delighted to be working in partnership with the Iris Prize to bring Iris on the Move to Bournemouth next year. February is both LGBT History month and National Student Pride and therefore I can think of no better time to showcase this programme of award-winning short and feature films. We’re excited to accompany screenings with talks and networking to give our up and coming future filmmakers and storytellers the opportunity to gain greater insight into the industry. Some of Bournemouth Film School’s finest LGBT stories will be featured with the best of the best represented by Iris. We can’t wait for February 20th for 4 days of captivating cinema exploring LGBT+ stories. “

The organisers have also confirmed the names of the short films competing for the third Iris Community & Education Short Film Awards. Seven secondary schools and youth groups are competing for the Education Award. They are: Ysgol Gwynllyw, Trefddyn; Ysgol Bro Edern, Cardiff; Ysgol Eirias, Colwyn Bay; Risca Community School, Newport; Home Educated Pupils, Carmarthenshire; Media Academy Cardiff and Willows High School, Cardiff.

The films will be judged by:

  • Joshua Bebbington Chair, Bangor University LGBT+ Society
  • Claire Lawrie Director: BEYOND ‘There's always a black Issue Dear’ (Iris Best British Winner 2018)
  • Pauline Williams Off y Grid
  • Jacob Percival Student, University of South Wales

There are twelve short films competing for the Iris Community Short Film Award, the groups responsible for the films are: TSMU (Trans Social Meet Up, South Wales); PRISM (Welsh Government’s LGBT+ staff network); Unique Transgender Network, North Wales; Birchgrove WI, Cardiff; UNA International Students; Powys Mind/PAVO; Cymru Cymraeg Caerdydd; Aberration, Aberystwyth; SWS (Standards in Wrexham Services), Attic Players, Newcastle Emlyn; Betsi Cadwaldr University Health Board and Ty Dewi Sant Care Home, Penarth. The films will be judged by:

  • Tim Heywood South Wales Gay Men’s Chorus
  • Paula Johnson North Wales Police Enfys
  • Lara Zeidan Director: Three Centimetres (Iris Prize Winner 2018)
  • Kris Francies University of South Wales

The Leadership Award, which is open to all the community groups competing will be judged by:

  • Carol Jones Chartered Marketer / Iris Trustee
  • Sue Oliver RainbowBiz Ltd
  • Sarah Way RainbowBiz Ltd

The full Iris on the Move: Llandudno Junction programme and box office is available here!

The main festival sponsors are: The Michael Bishop Foundation, Welsh Government, BFI, Ffilm Cymru Wales, Pinewood Studios Group, Cardiff University, For Cardiff, Bad Wolf, Gorilla Group, Co-op Respect, Gelert Post Production and Cineworld. The festival also works in partnership with BAFTA Cymru, Pride Cymru and Stonewall Cymru.

Iris on the Move is also funded by Film Hub Wales.

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