As citizens of Sheffield, we are increasingly spoilt for choice when it comes to going to the cinema, and access to film is about the best it’s ever been.
At the Showroom, we’re passionate about fantastic films from all over the planet, and we do our best to share these fabulous film finds with you, to help them reach a wider audience.
Part of our commitment to this is making cinema accessible to all. We do this in lots of ways including screenings for parents with babies, dementia friendly screenings, autism friendly screenings and our Cine26 low-cost film ticket.
We also have a long-term commitment to making our cinema welcoming for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. We offer an infra-red hearing support system and every Monday, we show films with d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing subtitles across our entire programme.
When it comes to access though, we believe film can be transformative and life-changing, and that arts, culture and heritage are a vital part of education.
Because of this, in addition to our Cine26 ticket scheme (all films £4.50 for ages 26 or under) we are proud providers of the BFI film academy residential: exhibition and distribution.
From across the country, 30 young people aged 16-19, have converged on Sheffield to learn how films are developed, released and programmed. For many, the processes that take a film from the final cut to the big screen are a great unknown, so for this week, the brilliant young people selected will learn from experts about everything that happens after the film-making side of things is done and dusted.
There are many careers available in film distribution and cinema. In order to build a vibrant and thriving industry, we need to make sure young people are aware of the many options and the best routes to the career of their choice.
With guests including film critics, distributors, marketing experts, programmers and festival professionals, participants will leave at the weekend with more tools at their disposal. Alongside workshops; speakers and film screenings, they will work together to develop their own ideas for film seasons and events - taking on board the nuggets of wisdom and the big ideas that hopefully they will have collected.
On Saturday, each group will present their ideas, and my fellow judges and I will select one pitch to be brought to life as a real cinema season. The group will be allocated a budget to make it happen and be supported along the way. In December their idea will be produced and presented at the Showroom! It is a brilliant opportunity for them to work with us to make something happen, as well as for us to learn from the young people about what is important to them and their peers.