The Manchester Film Festival gears up for its third edition by announcing the opening and closing night films of the 2017 official Selection. The World premiere of ALFIE BOE – ON THE WHEELS OF A DREAM will open MANIFF2017 on March 2nd at an Evening Gala Event presented by the Radisson Edwardian at ODEON MANCHESTER. Directed by Lisa Edwards the film follows Tony award winning English Opera singer Alfie Boe, as he tries to break through the stereotypes of the music industry and tear down all barriers to allow him to sing any genres of music. We follow him on tour in the US, UK and Canada as he attempts to find a broader audience without alienating the fans he already has. This documentary is a powerful character driven piece that takes us behind the scenes of Great Britain's favourite tenor, as he risks everything to follow his heart and live his dream. Programming director Al Bailey said “With Alfie’s roots being in the North West of England, It’s a great fit for our opening night film. Having the world premiere in Manchester is fantastic!”
The headlining film will be supported at the Gala Event with more North West flavoured short films that include Luke Losey’s ONE LAST DANCE starring legendary North Wales born actor Jonathan Pryce, TAUBMAN directed by Manchester based filmmaker Ben Price, starring Jack P Shepherd and Paul Hendy’s poetic comedy THE LAST LAUGH featuring a depiction of late local comedian Eric Morecambe.
The closing night gala, which includes the festival’s annual awards ceremony and its quirky Worker Bee awards, takes a similar vein with Wayne Roberts’ feature film KATIE SAYS GOODBYE, the TIFF hit stars Oldham born actress Olivia Cooke, whose rising star knows no boundaries, with her upcoming Stephen Spielberg blockbuster READY PLAYER ONE set to catapult her into the A list Hollywood stratosphere. Al Bailey continued “Although MANIFF is very much an international film festival, it’s massively important that we champion local filmmaking identity and our opening and closing night Galas do exactly that, Olivia Cooke is sensational in KATIE SAYS GOODBYE and it will be a great end to what will be a festival crammed full of exciting stories from the world of independent cinema.”
MANIFF seems to be a rising star in its own right as it has already garnered an industry nod with its nomination as the only film festival in the world within the coveted 2016 UK Festival Awards, and the 2017 festival’s programme has promised to be jammed packed with rising and established names from international and domestic cinema. MANIFF17’s main theme of THE RISING TALENT OF INDEPENDENT CINEMA, not just from the UK but from around the world, will offer a line-up of some 90 plus films that will be showcased in Manchester from 2nd to the 5th March, with premieres, guest appearances and an Indie fest atmosphere for film lovers to saviour. The full line up of films will be announced at an invite only Press Event at ODEON MANCHESTER on TUESDAY 17th January.