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Welcome to the 17th edition of GSFF!
Our programme includes a deep dive into the archives with rediscovered works and experimental reappropriation; a focus on Moroccan filmmaker Randa Maroufi; a portmanteau film portrait of Govanhill; and a thematic strand in defiance of oppression.

This year we invite audiences to reflect on collectivity, liberation and archives, with a special strand entitled Towards Liberation. Towards Liberation will utilise archive, documentary and fictional short films from across the globe to examine threads around imprisonment, imperialism, representation and resistance. The strand will include a programme of Palestinian short films (Weapons of criticism and dedicated consciousness), which will be followed by a live performance by British-Palestinian musician and sound artist Kareem Samara, whose joining of traditional and contemporary genres explores threads of decolonial possibilities and diasporic identity. 50% of ticket sales from this screening will be donated to Medical Aid for Palestinians.

We present a spotlight on French-Moroccan filmmaker Randa Maroufi (Bab Sebta, Barbès, Close-Up), who will be in attendance for a retrospective screening and in-conversation event. Born in Casablanca and based in Paris, Maroufi carefully stages moving image works that observe layers of socio-political realities, often focusing on the images and narratives of public spaces and who occupies them, the seen and unseen, interrogating and subverting their conventions. Complementing this focus is Beyond The Seventh Gate: a programme of contemporary Moroccan artist moving image work.

Our collaboration with archive collective Invisible Women offers an expanded focus on the rarely seen and boundary-pushing films of 1970s Mexican feminist filmmaking group Cine Mujer, exploring gender roles and domestic labour. Durban-born artist Jyoti Mistry presents her triptych of works reappropriating archive footage to unearth representations of those historically marginalised. And we unveil a brand new portmanteau portrait of Govanhill and its communities.

Late night programming includes Følkløric, a two part strand tracing traditional and contemporary visions of folklore on film, spanning decades of classic folk-horror, subversive storytelling and fresh influences on the folklore canon. Comedy and cult thrills are provided in For Shorts & Giggles and Short Stirrers. We present two programmes of Festival Faves, and regulars Family Shorts, Café Flicker and Visible Cinema return.

The festival opens with Bill Douglas Unseen Super 8, six early never before screened 8mm films by the great Scottish filmmaker for whom our international competition is named, charting his development as a visual storyteller, accompanied by a live score composed and performed by Scottish musician Gerard Black. And of course at the heart of this year’s programme are our three competitions, the Bill Douglas Award, the Scottish Competition and the Young Scottish Filmmaker Prize.

Guest Curators
Beyond The Seventh Gate: contemporary Moroccan artists’ moving image – Myriam Mouflih
Bill Douglas Unseen Super 8 – Andy Kimpton-Nye
Cine Mujer – Invisible Women
Følkløric – Heather Bradshaw and Grace Feinmann