The 20th edition of Scotland’s largest film festival will run from 28 February to 10 March at Glasgow Film Theatre (itself celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2024) plus venues across the city.
Glasgow Film Festival (GFF) 2024 will open with the UK premiere of Rose Glass’s new thriller Love Lies Bleeding starring Kristen Stewart, and close with the world premiere of Janey, following Scottish stand-up legend Janey Godley as she embarks on her final live tour following her cancer diagnosis.
Across 12 packed days, the programme boasts 11 world and international premieres, 69 UK premieres and 15 Scottish premieres, from 44 countries.
World and international premieres include Tummy Monster, a hallucinogenic dark drama by Glasgow director Ciaran Lyons, starring rising Scottish star Lorn Macdonald; the big screen adaptation of blackly comic novel Bucky F*cking Dent, written by, directed by and starring David Duchovny, and a new restoration of Billy Connolly: Big Banana Feet, the rarely-seen documentary shot during his 1975 tour of Ireland.
UK premieres include real-life father and daughter duo Ewan and Clara McGregor taking a road trip in Bleeding Love, Cynthia Erivo as a Liberian refugee who befriends Alia Shawkat’s American tour guide in Drift, and Viggo Mortensen directing and starring in Western epic The Dead Don’t Hurt.
Scottish audiences will get the first chance to see Kevin Macdonald’s take on the rise and fall of a fashion icon in High and Low: John Galliano, Lea Seydoux and George MacKay in The Beast and Luna Carmoon’s hotly-tipped debut Hoard.
The UK premiere of the fantastical romance La Chimera starring Josh O’Connor will take place at both GFF and nine partner cinemas across the UK.
GFF is one of the leading film festivals in the UK and is run by Glasgow Film, a charity which also runs Glasgow Film Theatre. Glasgow Film Festival is made possible by support from Screen Scotland, the BFI Audience Projects Fund, awarding National Lottery funding and Glasgow Life. For the full programme of events, visit the Glasgow Film Festival website.
Opening and Closing Gala Premieres
GFF24 will open on 28 February with the UK premiere of British director Rose Glass’s hotly-anticipated follow-up to Saint Maud, Love Lies Bleeding. The stylish romantic thriller stars Kristen Stewart as Lou, a reclusive gym owner who falls hard for Jackie (Katy M. O’Brian), an ambitious bodybuilder who's heading to Las Vegas to pursue her dream. Their love soon leads to violence as they get pulled deep into the web of Lou's criminal family.
The festival will close on 10 March with the world premiere of Janey, an honest, moving and often hilarious documentary about Glasgow comedian Janey Godley, interweaving stories from her life with footage from her Not Dead Yet tour in the wake of her terminal cancer diagnosis. Janey found fame for her sweary anti-Trump placards, became a social media sensation as she revoiced First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s Covid briefings, was called out for controversial historic tweets and was trying to rebuild her career when she received her diagnosis. Featuring appearances from familiar faces including Nicola Sturgeon and Jimmy Carr, director John Archer’s feature captures Janey Godley at her most vulnerable and most gallus. Following its world premiere at Glasgow Film Festival, Janey will be released in UK cinemas from 15 March.
World and European Premieres
Glasgow audiences will be the very first to see 11 world and international premieres on the big screen.
A Scottish comedy icon makes a welcome return to the big screen with a brand new restoration of the little-seen 1976 documentary Billy Connolly: Big Banana Feet. Lovingly restored by the BFI in collaboration with the film’s director Murray Grigor from the only two 16mm prints known to exist, this comedy charmer follows Billy on his legendary 1975 tour of Ireland.
Other highlights include the chance to get an exclusive first look at the entire second season of the award-winning Helensburgh-shot queer BBC Scotland drama Float, written by acclaimed playwright Stef Smith and starring Hannah Jarett Scott and Jessica Hardwick, before it hits TV screens later this year.
Still from Float, courtesy of GFF
69 feature films will get their first ever UK cinema showing at this year’s GFF as the programme boasts a wealth of comedies, dramas and real-life stories from 37 countries across the world.
Behind the camera talent take their moment in the spotlight with Made in England: The Films of Powell and Pressburger, a personal and moving look at two of British cinemas greatest filmmakers, narrated by Martin Scorsese; and Frank Capra: Mr America, the story of how a young immigrant rose through the ranks of early Hollywood to become one of the Great American storytellers. GFF24 is also thrilled to host the UK Premiere of Jack Archer’s Bill Douglas: My Best Friend, a look at the extraordinary lifelong friendship between one of Scotland’s greatest filmmaking talents Bill Douglas and Peter Jewell, the man who became his close friend, confidant and creative muse when they met doing National Service in Egypt in the 1950s, living and working together until Bill’s death from cancer aged 57.
Audience Award, Sponsored by MUBI
The only award handed out at Glasgow Film Festival is given to an outstanding feature film by a first or second time director and is chosen by the most important people – our audience. Sponsored by MUBI, the eight-strong shortlist for the GFF24 Audience Award includes Falling into Place, a meet-cute romance set between London and a wintry Isle of Skye written, directed by and starring Aylin Tezel alongside Chris Fulton (Bridgerton).
Allison Gardner, CEO of Glasgow Film and Director of GFF, said: “I am extremely proud to have been here for every one of Glasgow Film Festival’s 20 editions. My thanks goes to everyone who has helped us to get this far. Many, many people have worked incredibly hard to make this the friendliest film festival in the world.
"One of my highlights of GFF is our Audience Award, this year sponsored by MUBI. The Audience Award supports emerging talent and it’s a joy to see these films play in front of our dedicated audiences. Watch all 8 of our hand picked films and support these directors at the early stages of their directing careers.
"Over the years, at Glasgow Film Festival, we have supported Scottish films and talent. Something that we are very proud to have done and this year is no exception. We also champion Scottish films from our past and this year we have some fantastic anniversaries to honour. Shallow Grave is 30 years old and Glaswegian Lynne Ramsay’s debut feature Ratcatcher screening from a new 4K print is 25 years old. Our motto is ‘Cinema For All’ and we strive to bring the best films from around the world to Glasgow. My advice to everyone is to choose films you know nothing about and take a chance, you might discover a hidden gem (and the programme is positively bursting with them!) that will stay with you forever. Here’s to the next 20 years.”
Isabel Davis, Executive Director of Screen Scotland said: “Screen Scotland is thrilled to support this very special anniversary edition of the Glasgow Film Festival. This year’s outstanding programme richly demonstrates GFF’s dedication to the best in cinema from Scotland and around the world. Congratulations, Allison and all at GFF on two decades of bringing great cinema to audiences across Glasgow. It’s a pleasure to support you in all that you do.”
Ben Luxford, Director of UK Audiences at the BFI, said: “The Glasgow Film Festival is delivering another fantastic programme in venues across Glasgow, plus elements which reach far beyond the city’s borders. It promises to be another great Festival and we hope as many audiences as possible will be able to enjoy it thanks to National Lottery funding.”
Glasgow Life Chair, Bailie Annette Christie, said: “Glasgow Film Festival is one of the most popular annual highlights of our city’s cultural events programme. It is always greatly anticipated by audiences from near and far, as well as industry professionals, and is internationally renowned as a carefully curated showcase of the best of world cinema. This 20th edition of the festival offers an extensive, exciting programme featuring an incredible and diverse range of contemporary and retrospective film across all genres, special screenings, and other events. I’ve no doubt we can look forward to another hugely successful festival that will reinforce Glasgow’s standing as a great destination for cinema, and a city in which our passion for film is matched by our talent and expertise in the film, TV and creative industries.”
Tickets to Opening and Closing Galas go on sale at 11am on Thursday 25 January; tickets to all events go on sale to GFT Cinecard holders at 11am on Friday 26 January and on general sale at 11am on Monday 29 January on the Glasgow Film Theatre website and from the GFT Box Office.
Watch the trailer for the Glasgow Film Festival
Information on GFF’s major funders:
Screen Scotland drives development of all aspects of Scotland’s film and TV industry, through funding and strategic support. Screen Scotland is part of Creative Scotland and delivers these services and support with funding from Scottish Government and The National Lottery. Find out more on the Screen Scotland website and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.
About the BFI National Lottery Audience Projects Fund
The BFI Audience Projects Fund will invest £15m of National Lottery funding over three years to support ambitious, audience-facing activity of national scale that celebrates and showcases independent UK and international film and XR work. It will support projects that seek to expand access and encourage greater enjoyment of cinema by connecting audiences that are representative of the UK population with great films - in venues, at events and online.