For its 15th festival Iris is back on the big screen, bringing audiences the best in LGBT+ storytelling from around the world at Premiere Cinema and Chapter Arts. For those unable to join us here in Cardiff, you can still enjoy our programme of short films and feature films online.
Following an entirely online event in 2020 and now in its 15th year, the Iris Prize LGBT+ Film Festival is back on the big screen, taking up a residency at Cardiff’s Premiere Cinema and returning to Chapter Arts.
Among the programmes of short films in competition you’ll find a double bill of empowering trans stories from South Korea and France (TRANS POWER!) and a showcase of lesbian shorts by amazing women directors, including Noor & Layla, a queer Muslim love story told in reverse, and the fabulously lurid lockdown-based animation Are You Still Watching?
For those missing world travel, we’ll be taking audiences on a cinematic tour in a programme titled One World, featuring films from Russia, Bulgaria, the Atikamekw community of Manawan in Quebec, and our very first shortlisted film from Iran – the delightful And Just Two More. Elsewhere, in our documentary strand, True Stories, you’ll hear heartrending accounts of queer life in present day Tanzania.
What’s more, there are three films from Wales in competition, including Cwch Deilen (Leaf Boat) and Three Letters, a touching portrait of the LGBT+ and disability campaigner Paul Davies. The third, Lesbian, is a visually striking adaptation of the poem by Syrian-British performance poet Lisa Luxx, and is shortlisted in both categories.
During the festival there’ll be live music from the band Hyyts, whose songs you may have heard on the trailers for our International and Best British short films. Other events include film industry talks and a daily happy hour sponsored by Co-op Food, taking place at the Iris Club, which this year is situated in Queens Arcade.
As well as the 48 short films competing for the International and Best British prizes there are nine features, including the critically acclaimed documentary Rebel Dykes and the UK Premiere of Saint Narcisse, the latest film from controversial director Bruce LaBruce.
There’s also a chance to catch Firebird, a hit when it screened at BFI Flare earlier in the year and based on the true story of an illicit romance in the Soviet armed forces. Elsewhere, cult movie superstar Udo Kier delivers a stellar performance in the bittersweet comedy drama Swan Song: a surprising change in direction for Todd Phillips, perhaps best known to audiences here for his riotously funny and filthy Another Gay Movie and Another Gay Sequel.
Those unable to join us in Cardiff will be pleased to know that festival-related content, our full programme of shorts, and all feature films excepting Swan Song and Rebel Dykes are available online.
Premiere Cinema Cardiff – Capitol Shopping Centre, CF10 2HQ
Chapter Arts – Market Road, Canton, CF5 1QE
Iris Club – Queens Arcade (Working Street entrance), CF10 2BY
University South Wales Atrium – Adam Street, CF24 2FN
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