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Transforming Cinema Film Festival

Sheffield’s first film festival championing transgender, gender nonconforming and non-binary communities took place last weekend. With film screenings, interactive workshops and guest talks taking place at a host of locations throughout the city centre, the festival offered a platform for the trans community to share their stories.

Beginning at the Curzon cinema, the not-for-profit film festival created by Sheffield based organisation E.D.E.N Film Productions, began with an opening talk by Managing Director and Founder Claire Watkinson. As an organisation, E.D.E.N work to provide LGBTQ people with the skills to be able to shoot, edit and produce short films. It was these projects that led to the creation of Transforming Cinema’s featured films the ‘E.D.E.N Shorts’, which were made entirely by the projects’ participants.

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Taylor Le Fín – an E.D.E.N member who was the central figure in the brilliant E.D.E.N short Switching Teams, spoke to the audience about how they also spent hours behind-the-scenes editing the film, and how they feel now that it’s had its premiere showing:

“I hope that people are enjoying it and take something from it.”

“We’re definitely aiming to see it shown in more places,” they said. “We’ve got a couple of people who’ve requested to show it, so hopefully it will really start gathering pace and be seen by a lot more people.”

As well as film screenings, Transforming Cinema welcomed some of the UK’s most influential speakers, artists and organisations to Sheffield. Saturday saw a workshop with Scottish filmmaker and vlogger Kate Adair, an afternoon talk with actress Rebecca Root of BBC2 series Boy Meets Girl and a discussion with the organisation Trans Media Watch which highlighted the varied and, unfortunately, often negative ways the media cover trans issues. On Sunday a memorial was also held in honour of TDOR (Trans Day of Remembrance).

If you didn’t make it to the film festival, do seek out a showing of the E.D.E.N shorts, they’re informative, beautifully put together and are a great example of the power of the short film medium. A round of applause for all at E.D.E.N, if you will.

If you’re interested in showing any of E.D.E.N’s films or would like to get involved, you can find more at their website www.edenfilm.co.uk

Words & Photograph by Danielle Mustarde

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