Belfast Film Festival

An eye-popping 11 day line-up of unforgettable movie moments from March 30 to April 9

Festival Details


Thursday, 30 March 2017 to Sunday, 09 April 2017



The Festival has already revealed its coup of bringing Hollywood star John Cusack to the city to receive the Réalta Award for Outstanding Contribution to Cinema. Tickets for the event at Movie House Cinemas sold out within hours and screenings have been added of High Fidelity at Queen’s Film Theatre and Max at Strand Arts Centre, both of which John will attend and participate in a Q&A with the audience.

But it’s not all about Cusack. There are over 130 other films from 35 countries featuring the best in new cinema, big movie premieres, absorbing documentaries, and a local filmmakers’ showcase – plus quirky events including a Calamity Jane Sing-A-Long and a Star Trek Galaxy Quest.

Belfast Film Festival likes to claim it never has an overarching theme, but this year’s programme does feature something of a movie menagerie – the brilliant Studio Ghilbi’s new release The Red Turtle, female rivalry comedy drama Catfight, a Live Read of A Fish Called Wanda, and a Dog Film Festival.

Opening the 17th Belfast Film Festival is Mindhorn, already a contender for funniest film of the year. The film’s star, Julian Barratt (The Mighty Boosh), will attend the premiere of this new comic romp about a washed-up actor whose fictional detective from the 1980s is called upon to deal with a fugitive killer. DJ and music producer David Holmes is one of the film’s composers.

The Closing Gala is the European premiere of Bad Day for The Cut, a modern-day revenge thriller directed by Chris Baugh from local production company Six Mile Hill. The film stars Nigel O’Neill, Susan Lynch, Józef Pawlowski and Stuart Graham.

And there will be a special Mid-Week Gala of Handsome Devil, a funny and observant coming-of-age tale from Irish novelist and filmmaker John Butler (The Stag).

Padraig O’Malley is expected to attend a screening of The Peacemaker. For five years, filmmaker James Demo followed the international peacemaker through crisis zones from Nigeria to Iraq, and discovered an even more fractious frontline – O’Malley’s personal life.

Programme highlights include the Oscar® nominated A Man Called Ove, World War II period comedy drama Their Finest starring Gemma Arterton, Mad to be Normal with David Tennant as controversial Scottish psychiatrist RD Laing, and Mark Cousins’ newest film Stockholm My Love starring Neneh Cherry.

In the Documentary Panorama, I Am Not Your Negro tackles race in modern America, Notes to Eternity is a meditation on the Israel-Palestine conflict, and Becoming Zlatan looks at the decisive years of Swedish soccer player Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Tickets are on sale at and by phoning (028) 9024 6609 or in person at Visit Belfast Welcome Centre, 9 Donegall Square North, Belfast.

Belfast Film Festival is funded by Northern Ireland Screen, BFI, Belfast City Council and Tourism Northern Ireland. Media partners Cool FM and The Irish News.