GSFF20 Online Day 1: How The Earth Must See Itself (A Thirling) + Maneater

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Today isn’t what we imagined. 

A week ago, we were still keeping our fingers crossed, hoping we’d be able to kick off GSFF20 as planned. But as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to escalate and our emotions over our postponement have settled (just a little bit), we try to continue GSFF from our own living rooms. 

Firstly, we are happy to announce that the new dates for GSFF20 are 19 to 23 August. We’re working hard to ensure as much as possible of the original programme will be rescheduled, and will make more announcements in the coming weeks and months, keeping an eye on how the current crisis develops. We would like to thank our venue partners CCA, Civic House and GFT for working on this with us.

In the meantime, thanks to the generosity of our selected filmmakers, this week we are bringing a taste of the GSFF20 programme online. From today we will post two films per day from the programme, each making their online premiere here. These films are free to view for one day only, although we welcome any donations, which will go directly towards the cost of restaging this year’s festival. We will aim to reward donors with perks when the festival comes around in August. Follow the link to our Paypal Giving Fund profile at the bottom of the page.

Wednesday 18 March

Today we were supposed to open our festival with My First Film, a unique live expanded cinema performance by Zia Anger. And although we wish we could bring that to your homes, instead we hope you appreciate these first two films selected from our 2020 line-up. 

How The Earth Must See Itself (A Thirling), by Lucy Cash and Simone Kenyon and produced by National Theatre of Scotland and Scottish Sculpture Workshop, is drawn from the fourth programme in our Scottish Competition: We Are Guided. Inspired by Nan Shepherd’s lyrical landmark of nature writing The Living Mountain, it’s a poetic work set in the Scottish Cairngorms, accompanied by a soundtrack by Hanna Tuulikki. Captions are available for D/deaf and hard of hearing viewers.


Next up, Sandra Isacsson and Caroline Wallén’s Maneater (Sweden) is plucked from our late night For Shorts and Giggles programme. In a funny and delightfully perverse commentary on the male gaze, the two female directors instruct a group of middle-aged men to eat bananas and follow some questionable directions to see how far they’ll push themselves. 


We’d like to thank everyone who supported us in our decision to postpone the festival. Guests, partners, suppliers, and audiences have been overwhelmingly generous and understanding, easing the pain of what has been a difficult few days, for us and many other organisations and individuals experiencing the same challenge.

Please stay safe during this extraordinary period, and take care of one another. Catch up with the latest day of #GSFF20online here.