The Iris Prize LGBT+ Film Festival returns

The Iris Prize Film Festival was first founded in 2006, celebrating LGBT+ short films from international filmmakers here in Cardiff.

Heading into it’s 14th year, the film festival has welcomed 35 new contestants into the mix as they compete for a £30,000 prize to help fund their next film.

The festival, which normally holds an award ceremony, is set to take place online.

This year, the festival will take place online from October 6 to 11. More information on how to watch the festival is available from the Iris Prize website.

Iris Prize has 25 international partner festivals who nominate films each year for the Iris Prize shortlist, with the rest being chosen by a jury from a record number of films entered through open submissions.

All films hone in on aspects of LGBT+ themes and life. From India, Macedonia and the UK each film celebrates life of the LGBT+ community here in Wales and across the world.

The festival also offers other awards including: Best British Short, Best Feature and more.

My Brother is a Mermaid ‘ took the top spot for Best British Short last year. The short film focused on the life of a trans feminine teenager in a prejudice filmed coastal town. Director, Alfie Dale, worked closely with transgender charity Mermaids from conception through to post-production. The charity advised on trans inclusive casting and ensured the story was told in a truthful and positive way.

Acknowledging the challenges that this year’s event have presented, Andrew Pierce, Iris Prize Chair said: “Back in April we watched everything around us change as life here in the UK and the rest of the world became a frightening journey into the unknown.

“Almost everything that we knew for certain was taken away from us. During the height of the pandemic the entertainment sector became a lifeline, sharing stories to entertain millions during the lockdown. It also became a victim as the need to protect people from Covid-19 meant we had to stop filming.”

Due to coronavirus restrictions, the event will take place online and will be free to watch with an optional paid service for watching the festival on repeat.

Last year saw Los Angeles based director, Sarah Smith, take home the prize for her work as director on short film ‘ Black Hat ‘.

The film follows a Hasidic man who comes to terms with his sexuality as he’s introduced to the world of LGBT+ nightlife and culture.

WalesOnline – Cardiff