Festivals 2018



 26 – 28 January   Slapstick Festival featuring a considerable number of silent films including including this year’s festival gala consisting of Keaton’s 1924 masterpiece Sherlock Jr,  Chaplin’s 1918 comedy A Dog’s Life and Laurel & Hardy’s 1929 silent, Angora Love.  Further screenings TBC   Colston Hall/Watershed, Bristol Link


23 February to 11 March Borderlines Film Festival     The sixteenth  annual Borderlines Film Festival runs in the Shropshire, Hereford and Marches areas and screens some quality silents, including this year The Lost World (1926) and Behind The Door (1919) Various venues.  Link


10 – 11 March  Kennington Bioscope Silent Laughter Weekend  A whole weekend of classic and rarely screened silent comedies.  Programme includes Raymond Griffith in The Night Club (1925), Beatrice Lillie in Exit Smiling (1926) and Max Linder in Seven Years Bad Luck (1921).  The Cinema Museum, LambethLink

21 – 25 March.  HippFest –  Seventh Hippodrome Festival of Silent Film,   Scotland’s premier silent film festival takes place in Scotland’s oldest purpose-built cinema, with a range of British and international silent films all with live musical accompaniment including Last of the Mohicans (1921), Lubitsch masterpiece The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg (1928) and a European premier for newly restored Chinese melodrama Striving (Fen Dou) (1932).   Hippodrome Cinema, Bo’ness, Scotland Link


19 – 20 April  British Silent Film Festival SymposiumA day of presentations at KCL and a day of rare film screenings at the Phoenix Cinema in Finchley .   Film details TBA.  Kings College/Phoenix Cinema, London Link


8 – 30 May     3rd Annual Yorkshire Silent Film Festival A month long festival all across Yorkshire showcasing the best of silent film, all with live musical accompaniment.  Multiple locations across Yorkshire. Link


26-19 July  Cinema Rediscovered The 3rd annual event bringing the finest digital restorations, contemporary classics and film print rarities back where they belong – on the big screen, including a selection of silents.  Programme TBA Various cinemas across BristolLink


8-9 September –  Kennington Bioscope Silent Film Weekender  An unrivaled programme of rare, unique and little seen silents, presented by leading silent film historians with live music by some of the country’s finest silent accompanists.   Cinema Museum, London Link

18 – 19 September   New Approaches to Silent Film Historiography: Technology, Spectatorship and the Archive  This conference will analyse the impact of recent technological and institutional developments on the study, experience, and restoration of silent films and discuss sustainable ways forward.  University of Leeds, Leeds Link


25 October – 1 NovemberCambridge Film Festival     Now in its 38th year (and the third longest running film festival in the UK) the Cambridge festival always features a strong silent film theme.  Film details to be confirmed. Link




15 – 25 February  Berlin International Film Festival.  Usually containing a strong element of silent film, this year is no different with a strand  focusing on cinema of the Weimar era, showcasing a programme of 28 narrative, documentary, and short films made between 1918 and 1933. Titles include mountaineering epic Fight for the Matterhorn (1928), a long thought lost Urban Gad epic Christian Wahnschaffe (1921) and Menschen im Busch (People In The Bush, 1930), an early example of ethnographic cinema.  Link

23 – 24 Februry    Kansas Silent Film Festival  In its 22nd year the Kansas Silent Film Festival’s mission is to provide an entertaining and educational forum for silent films and it’s one of the few  festivals to do so for free. Every year, on the last weekend in February, from Friday night through Saturday night, come rain or snow or shine, the festival showcases films from the silent era with live musical accompaniment. All films are shown on a big screen like they were originally intended.        Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas, USA  Link

21 February – 4 March  Dublin International Film Festival  With a modest but quality silent film strand featuring shocker Behind The Door (1919), a newly restored version of The Italian Straw Hat (1928) and The Big Parade (1925) plus documentary masterpiece Dawson City: Frozen Time (2017). Link


14-18 March16th Karlsruhe Silent Film Festival  Programme TBC  ZKM Medientheater, Karlsruhe, Germany Link


6 – 9 April  Toronto Silent Film Festival Programme includes; Hamlet (1921), The Sensation Seekers (1927), Battle of the Somme (1916),  A Page of Madness (1926) and The Strong Man (1926)  Various cinemas, Toronto, Canada Link

19 – 22 April  15th Polish Silent Film Festival (Święto Niemego Kina).   The programme this year focuses upon Polish silent super-star Pola Negri and films being screened include Bestia (1917), The Wild Cat (1921), When The Heart Glows With Hate (1917) and The Spanish Dancer (1923).  Other films being screened include People With No Tomorrow (1919), The Doll (1919), The Dumb Girl of Portici (1916), Pandora’s Box (1929) and The Patsy (1928).  The festival also includes a two day international conference on Pola Negri’s career, including reflections on her legacy, as well as the people of her epoch who shaped her artistic education, and those who she have in turn influenced.   Kino Iluzjon, Warsaw, Poland  Link

27-29 April   6th Loud Silents Film Festival  Finnish top-notch artists and internationally acclaimed silent film musicians compose new soundtracks for classic silent films.  Programme includes The Golem: How He Came Into the World (1920), The Suffragette (1913), The Lost World (1925) and in a programme definitely not to be missed, a collection of 1920s French erotica with a Finnish rap soundtrack.   Tampere, Finland  Link

26-30 April     Denver Silent Film Festival      The Denver Silent Film Festival was established in September of 2010. It presents a broad spectrum of silent film by programming a lively and thought-provoking mix of educational and entertaining films. American and foreign classics, as well as lesser-known rare and restored films will be presented.  Programme TBC.  Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, Denver  Link


4 – 6 May  The 4th Nitrate Picture Show  This festival of film conservation  features screenings of vintage nitrate prints from international archives—including the Eastman Museum’s own collection—as well as lectures, workshops, and other opportunities to experience the art and science of film preservation, from print conservation to archival projection. “The Nitrate Picture Show is unlike any other festival of film preservation in that its ‘rules of the game’ are far more challenging—and often unpredictable,” said Paolo Cherchi Usai, Senior Curator, Moving Image Department, George Eastman Museum. “Our selection is based primarily on the physical condition and on the pictorial beauty of the prints; the quality and reputation of the works themselves comes next.”   Programme TBC  Eastman Museum, Rochester, New York, USA Link

19 May  Catalina Island Museum Silent Film Benefit. Recognized as one of the world’s longest running annual celebrations of Silent Film, the Catalina Island Museum’s 31st annual benefit is set to present a broader and more sensational program than in any year past. Held in the historic Avalon Casino Theatre, William Wrigley Jr.’s 1929 Art Deco Movie Palace, attendees will be treated to an authentic 1920s cinematic experience.  Harry Houdini, the celebrated handcuff king and self-liberator, stars in Jesse L. Lasky’s 1920 movie, Terror Island, which was filmed, in large part, on Catalina Island. Award-winning composer and sound designer, Michael Mortilla, and a group of the very best musicians in the nation will provide a 1920s Jazz-inspired live orchestral accompaniment for Terror IslandAvalon Casino Theatre, Catalina Island, Calif. USA Link

24 – 27 May  Cinevent 2018  This is a gathering of fans of silent and early sound films, and of collectors of motion pictures and related items. Movie screenings take place nearly continually every day of the convention.  Dealers fill over a hundred tables full of film, video, sound recordings, posters, stills, lobby cards, books, autographs…everything imaginable associated with film.  Programme TBC  Renaissance Columbus Downtown Hotel, Columbus, Ohio, USA.  Link

24 – 31 May  The 5th Silent Film Festival In Thailand  Featuring an eclectic collection of quality titles, this year including The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928), The House on Trubnaya (1928), The Goddess (1934) and Foolish Wives (1922).  Scala and Lido Cinemas, Bangkok  Link

30 May – 3 June    San Francisco Silent Film Festival   Full programme TBC   Castro Theater, San Francisco, USA Link


6 – 16 June   Nitrate Film Festival, Belgrade  Now in its 20th year this festival includes a considerable number of silent film screenings, this year including Dawn (Dir. Herbert Wilcox, GB, 1928), Maldone (Dir. Jean Grémillon, Fr, 1928) and Spring Awakening (Richard Oswald, Ger, 1929).  Presented by Jugoslovenska Kinoteka of Serbia and held in two Belgrade cinemas.  Few further details on festival programme or organisation.  Unable to find a festival link but further details apparently available from kinoteka.org.rs (in Serbian).

13 – 16 June  Mostly Lost 7.  Fancy going to a film festival where talking during the films is not only allowed but positively encouraged? Then Mostly Lost is the one for you, as the audience seek to put a name to unidentified fragments of silent and early sound film.  There are also quite a few complete films being screened….where its probably best not to talk!  Library of Congress, Packard Campus, Culpepper, Va USA  Link

23 June – 1 July     32nd Il Cinema Ritrovato,   A festival dedicated to the rediscovery of rare and little-known films with a particular focus on the origins of cinema and the silent movie period. It is organised every summer by the Cineteca di Bologna and is one of the world’s major festivals of film restoration. Bologna, Italy  Link


10 – 12 August   Capitolfest – Capitolfest is Central New York’s premier summer Cinephile film festival—a place to see rarely-shown and newly-discovered films of the silent and early talkie era, held at the historic 1,788-seat movie palace, the Capitol Theatre, which opened in December, 1928.  Set in the small upstate New York city of Rome, Capitolfest 16 promises to surpass its fourteen previous installments, with three days of eclectic and critically-acclaimed programming, which includes; The Coming of Sunbeam (1913) directed by Alice Guy Blaché; Lillian and Dorothy Gish in Henry King’s Romola (1924); On The Brink (1911) directed by Edwin S. Porter and Lois Weber; The Night of Love (1927) with Ronald Colman and Vilma Banky and directed by George Fitzmaurice; and The Rescue (1929) directed by Herbert Brenon with Ronald Colman and Lili Damita.  Capitol Theater, Rome, New York, USA Link

16 – 26 August   Bonn International Silent Film Festival.  Another long running festival, now in its 34th year, featuring outdoor screenings in the courtyard of Bonn University, this year’s festival includes Pabst’s The Devious Path (1928), Franz Osten’s epic Shiraz (1928) and Andre Antoine’s beguiling The Swallow and the Titmouse (1920).  University Courtyard, Bonn, Germany Link

27 August – 2 September   Forssa Silent Film Festival   In its 19th year, the festival includes well known classics such as Wings (Dir. William Wellman, 1927), The Big Parade (Dir. King Vidor, 1925) and Arsenal (Dir. Aleksandr Dovzhenko, 1927), the seriously grim Behind The Door (Dir. Irwin Willat, 1919) as well as a number of Finnish films including the long thought lost but now rediscovered and restored Kihlaus (Dir. Teuvo Puro, 1922).  All films have live musical accompaniment.  Forssa, Finland Link

30 August – 2 September Manila International Silent Film Festival  Now in its 12th year and this year featuring eight films including the wonderful Little Veronika (Dir. Robert Land, 1930), The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (Dir. Robert Weine, 1920), an as yet un-named Ozu comedy, all accompanied live by local musicians.   Cinema 2,SM Megamall, Manilla Link

31 August – 3 September  Telluride Film Festival  This long-running (now in its 45th year) and star-studded festival usually has an interesting selection of silents.  Festival tradition is that the programme isn’t disclosed until the opening night so its all something of a surprise but this year included Danish director Urban Gad’s Christian Wahnschaffe (1919) with live accompaniment by Stephen Horne, a new documentary on silent film pioneer Alice Guy-Blaché and a tribute to silent clown Buster Keaton from Peter Bogdanovich.  Telluride, Colorado, USA Link


6-16 September   First Wave Film Festival – Now in its third year and focusing on films from the silent  and pre-war sound era the First Wave festival screens a broad range of films and this year’s silent programme includes The Lodger, The Outlaw and his Wife A Page of Madness and Shiraz. Screenings run on the weekends of 6-9 September in the Skalvija art house cinema in Vilnius and 14-16 September in the Romuva cinema in Kaunas.  Also included are some magic lantern shows and a child focused event.  Screenings come with live accompaniment by local musicians and a factual introduction.  Vilnius/Kaunas, Lithuania  Link or Link


6 – 13 October  37th   Pordenone Silent Film Festival   Running since 1982 as a collaborative effort between La Cineteca del Friuli in Gemona and the Cinemazero filmclub in Pordenone, the Giornate del Cinema Muto, aka Pordenone Silent Film Festival, has established itself as the leading international event dedicated to the preservation, diffusion, and study of the first thirty years of cinema.  Cinema Verdi, Pordenone, Italy   Link  

12 – 14 October   Marie Dressler Foundation – Vintage Film Festival   In 1992, a group of film enthusiasts involved in the restoration of the Marie Dressler house had a wild idea. Why not hold a festival showing the films in which Marie Dressler had starred? This seemingly fantastic idea grew into the present form in which they show a variety of films generally made before about 55-60 years ago, often, although not always, including a film starring Marie Dressler.  Silent films for this year include Chaplin’s City Lights (1931) and Marion Davies at her comic best in King Vidor’s The Patsy (1928)       Capitol Theater, Port Hope, Ontario, Canada  Link


16 – 17 November   The Frank Buxton Silent Film Festival   The Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, in collaboration with the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, will present the debut Frank Buxton Silent Film Festival, a two-day, multi-movie cinematic excursion exploring the pleasures, history and lost art of American silent film. Screenings include Blackmail (1929), Its The Old Army Game (1926), Unknown (1927) along with some classic comedy shorts, all screened with live musical accompaniment.   Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, Seattle, Washington USA Link