A platform for filmmakers to create and inspire each other

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First event - 5 Oct 2023

Film & Q&A

FAM FILMS COMMUNITY PRESENTS SOUND SYSTEM ROOTED IN BRISTOLWe’ll be eating patties, drinking punch (rum is optional) and talking about the history of the old reggae blues parties, followed by Steve McQueen’s Lovers Rock film.


To bring together the Black community in spaces where they can enjoy, celebrate and praise black content from the UK and beyond. Bristol Black Film Festival is a journey of discovery of the most outstanding, thought provoking and powerful television programmes, documentaries and films either written, produced or directed by Black talent, while creating a space for discussion and debate of cultural issues affecting the Black community. A chance for ethnically diverse voices in TV and cinema to share their work and thought processes in spaces where they can be and feel themselves.


Bristol Black Film Festival will be an annual week long event that happens during the first week of July and can be used as a run up to/ accompaniment to Bristol’s St Pauls Carnival which usually takes place on the first Saturday in July. As with most film festivals contributors will submit their films into various categories ie, Best Feature, Best Documentary, Best Drama Short, Best Animation etc and there will be a small cost to submit films (average cost for submitting to film festivals is between £5 - £40 per film which is non-refundable). Submissions and winners will be selected by a small panel of industry professionals. There will also be a ‘Best of the Fest’ category selected via a voting system by attendees of the film festival. To attend the various events, you can either buy a week long festival pass, daily pass or book for individual films/events.The week long festival will build up to a African/Caribbean themed award ceremony on the last day of the event which can encompass other Black art forms such as music, food, poetry and dance.Additional category ideas would be Best Student Film award and *Best For Real Award (an award specific to Black film enthusiasts who want to give film making a go). *We envisage that this could be an online under 3 minute film competition open to all for free, with a loose topic that can be created using devices such as mobile phones, digital cameras, photographs or drawn as storyboards.The Fam Films Bristol Black Film Festival website will be an interactive space throughout the year which will host information and content such as tutorials, talks, podcasts from Black industry professionals and links to other affiliated websites, such as film colleges and universities.

Interested in taking part?

Contact us directly on info@famfilmscommunity.com

Who is behind the festival?

My name is Michelle Pascal and I’m a Black Bristolian. I went to St George School (now City Academy Bristol) and I knew I wanted to be a film director from the age of 12. I got my first break as a runner in a production company when I was 25 and I have never looked back. I have worked as a picture editor, journalist on Points West, director on factual programmes such as Countryfile, Antiques Roadshow and DIY SOS and recently I made a drama short which was funded by the BFI.I worked for the BBC for 20 years and when I left I was still the only Black female director working there. I then worked as a Talent Executive at Icon Films focusing on diversity within the industry and since it’s closure earlier this year I now work as a freelance producer and director.

Why a British black film festival?

To build an environment where Black filmmakers don’t just fit in but can flourish and be themselves and enable new voices and new ideas. The gatekeepers to this change are the TV and film commissioners. So let's build a platform that brings together, celebrates and empowers new and fresh Black content to be made.Currently Black content can be hard to find and films are easily lost in translation to white audiences and judges and/or missed by the Black audiences who want to watch it. I would like to bring the gatekeepers to experience Black content in its rightful place, amongst Black audiences.This approach has been successful within the music industry such as the MOBO awards, which sees black artists expand into the mainstream, now we need to make this happen within the British TV and film industry.

Why Bristol?

Bristol is a city that has a complex and colourful history when it comes to Black people. For decades the city has been known globally for standing up against injustices and inequalities regarding race. From the Bus Boycott in the '60s, the Bristol riots in the '80s and the recent pulling down of the Colston statue.Bristol Black Film Festival will take people on a journey of the city through venues such as the Cube Cinema, the Malcolm X Centre in St Pauls, Felix Road Adventure Play Ground in Easton, Knowle West Media Centre and central locations like the Arnolfini and Watershed can be a gateway for people to explore the city and learn about it’s history from a Black perspective.


  1. To create a premier Black festival for the Black community to celebrate their achievements together, with a door open for the wider community to explore.

  1. To encourage and enable Black talent to find their authentic selves through networking with peers and superiors in TV and film, along with potential for talent managers, commissioners and distributors to meet and scout Black talent within the industry.

  1. To provide a platform for developing and shaping future Black talent in the TV and film industry.

Keep in touch

Sign up to our mailing list or contact us directly on info@famfilmscommunity.com

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