Launched in 2001, the festival represents the first ever Kurdish Film Festival of its kind to be instituted worldwide and was organised with the support of the main Kurdish community centres in London namely Kurdish Cultural Centre in Oval, Kurdish and Turkish Community Centre (Halkevi-Malagel) in Hackney, Kurdish Community Centre in Haringey and Kurdish Exile Association in Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Led by a group of volunteers, its objective is to support the development of Kurdish cinema. By showcasing films made by Kurdish directors on any subject, and films of a feature, short and documentary style nature, on Kurds, by non-Kurdish directors, it encourages and provides a platform for both Kurdish and non Kurdish producers and film makers, many of them young directors. This helps expose and bring work that is produced and/ or inspired by Kurds to new audiences, and also highlights the issues and experiences facing not only Kurds, but in fact any minority or migrant community, ensuring its importance and continued relevance to us all.
Film festivals, as vehicles for artistic and cultural expression, are able to promote better cultural understanding and by creating linkages between different sectors of society, are one of the most effective mechanisms to help integrate migrant communities into the host nation; our experience with the London Kurdish Film Festival is no different. In its short history, it has already become one of the most successful film festivals to be organised by a particular ethnic minority community in London, helping foster relationships and bridge gaps between those in the Kurdish and wider society. Between 2001 and 2006, we have organised three major film festivals which have been attended by over 10,000 people from extremely diverse ethnic and social backgrounds. In so doing, our success has inspired and encouraged the broader Kurdish Diaspora elsewhere in Europe to organise similar festivals or film days in other countries with significant Kurdish populations, including Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, The Netherlands, Italy and Switzerland.
5th London Kurdish film festival will be held at Rio Cinema in east London between 30th October and 6th December 2007.
London Kurdish Film Festival Organising Committee