Cinemagic Film Festival Returns To Belfast

Cinemagic's 'On The Pulse' short film festival is set to return to Northern Ireland this weekend.

Special guests will attend the sessions throughout the month of March as the very best international short films for young audiences are showcased. The speakers include Director and Animator Robin Shaw, Director and Writer Ben Smith, Music Video Director Lochlainn McKenna and representatives from the BBC Writersroom.

Projects created by young local filmmakers will also be displayed throughout the 30 events.

On The Pulse is funded by the Department for Communities through Northern Ireland Screen and aims to motivate, educate and inspire young audiences with film screenings, education programmes, talks and hands-on workshops all focused on the short film genre.

The festival is teaming up with the Seamus Heaney HomePlace for the Julia Donaldson adapted screen stories The Snail and The Whale & Zog on 15 March, while The Gruffalo & The Gruffalo's Child will come to Lisburn's Island Arts Centre on Saturday 21.

No Alibis Bookstore provides the backdrop for Family Matters, a shorts collection examining family dynamics, and Fantastic Sci-Fi Shorts (19 March), a selection of the best new indie sci-fi and fantasy tales and all roads lead to The Black Box for Are You Sitting Comfortably (26 March) for an evening of thrills and gore with a eerie collection of horrors.
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Practical experiences for young filmmakers include Short Form & Digital Screenwriting with BBC Writersroom (7 & 14 March), Music Video Directing with Lochlainn McKenna (08 March) and Directing and Writing for Animation with Ben Smith (28 March). Ben will also screen his films Return to the Lost World & Stardog and Turbocat at The Ulster Museum.

The festival is an opportunity not to be missed for film enthusiasts, according to NI Screen's Head of Education Bernard McCloskey: "Cinemagic's On The Pulse short film festival is a fantastic opportunity for our local young talent to develop skills within the screen industries across Northern Ireland. Designed to help young people progress in their careers and understand the various roles within the industry, the festival is divided into a variety of workshops, screenings and programmes with industry professionals. This practical experience is essential to assisting participants in finding their way within the industry."

The first event of the season will set sail on HMS Caroline this Saturday, with classic cartoons Steamboat Willie and Looney Tunes shorts, while The Ulster Museum will play host to Wilde Stories (29 February), a triple bill of animated shorts based on Oscar Wilde's children's fiction.

Other highlights include Mimi and The Mountain Dragon & The Bear (08 March), Magical Tales with Robots and Whales (08 March), The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh (14 March) and Marvellous Misadventures (14 March) featuring a time travel fantasy, a superhero adventure, a laugh-out-loud comedy and a coming of age thriller!

Click here to visit the full catalogue of events, which get underway this Saturday, 29 February.

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