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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
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Pocketmags Digital Magazines

Eyes on the prize

THE MAJORITY OF FILM FESTIVALS FOLD WITHIN A YEAR BUT SINCE ITS LAUNCH IN 2006, THE IRIS PRIZE HAS GONE FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH – AND IS CURRENTLY GEARING UP FOR ITS TENTH ANNIVERSARY. SO WHAT’S ITS SECRET?
KILL PILL DIRECTOR LLOYD EYRE-MORGAN.

To find out, Winq went to meet Berwyn Rowlands, the festival director, and journalist Andrew Pierce, who’s the chairman of the prize. We meet in a café in Kensington just aft er they’ve visited Michael Bishop, the wealthy businessman and Tory peer who gives Iris its £30,000 prize money each year, the biggest handed out by any short film festival, which has to be spent on the creation of a new film.

“What makes Iris stand out,” explains Rowlands, “is the fact we hand out cash to make another film. Most festivals can be successful in saying, ‘Th at’s a lovely film, let’s watch it and talk about it and enjoy it.’ But we felt from the beginning that the world definitely didn’t need another film festival, because there were thousands of them. So we thought if we were going to create another it had to do something different.”

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