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31st edition of the Raindance Film Festival set to open in London

© Raindance

The Raindance Film Festival, the biggest independent film festival in the UK, is returning to London’s West End for its 31st edition. The West End is considered to be the birthplace of British cinema. Running from 25 October to 4 November, host theatres include Vue Piccadilly, Curzon Soho, Curzon Mayfair, and the Garden Cinema. This year, The House of Raindance industry hub and the Raindance Immersive VR Showcase will be held at Wonderville on Haymarket. At the east London Genesis Cinema, more films will be shown.

With a lineup of brand-new, timely and daring premieres of must-see films, Raindance celebrates its return to the West End. In keeping with Raindance’s mission to be a place to find and be discovered, this year’s selection prioritises the work of first-time, second-time, and third-time filmmakers across the full feature programme. This year, more than 75% of the films are first-time features, while 14% are second- or third-time features.

“When Raindance first launched back in 1993 with the World Premiere of What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, the festival found itself at home in London’s iconic West End, championing indie film in cinemas more accustomed to playing Hollywood blockbusters,” says Raindance founder Elliot Grove.

“Year after year, Raindance proved that the West End could be a home to film of every budget and genre. In our most recent editions, Raindance embraced local neighbourhood cinemas across London. Now for this, our 31st edition, we are wholeheartedly back in London’s West End, the beating heart of cinema in the UK. And we will continue to champion new filmmakers and the edgy, under-the-radar films that we at Raindance love so much. Join us in 2023, in the shadow of Eros in the heart of London – and maybe with a little help from Eros’s mythical arrows, we’ll all fall just a bit in love with independent film.”

“Day of the Fight” by director Jack Huston will have its UK premiere at the opening gala. Award-winning British actor Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire, American Hustle, House of Gucci) makes his directorial debut with this story of a once-renowned boxer who takes a redemptive journey through his past and present, on the day of his first fight since he left prison. This formidable drama stars Michael Pitt alongside a cast including Ron Perlman, Joe Pesci, and a cameo from Steve Buscemi. Director Jack Huston will take part in a post-screening Q&A, followed by a gala opening party at the Waldorf Hilton.

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