I love the autumn, with its changing colours and dancing leaves. I love the view from my desk as the swirling wind plays with the smoke and steam from the trains on the worth valley railway. The smells in my house of pumpkin soup and Christmas pudding coming from the kitchen while I build a cosy fire in the grate.
But what I love must of all is seeing the film entries as they come flooding in next year's film festival. Keep it up guys, you make my year.
I guess it had to happen, My lovely daughter nominated me and my other lovely daughter enjoyed emptying some melted snow over my head whilst one of my sons filmed it all. Don't worry, I've been talked out of entering it for any international festivals.
Th RATMA team are regrouping after the Summer holidays to get going on RATMA 2015. The dates will be announced shortly, and we will start to accept entries very shortly.
There are things happening to the format that will make the event more enjoyable and with up events and a few surprises.
RATMA 2015 will be longer, bigger and more inclusive than ever before with support from internationally acclaimed film-makers and a chance to experience something very special.
We hope to see more of you here this time, we were very happy to welcome British, European and Asian film makers last time round so I can't wait to meet you all if you can get here.
Watch this space for announcements, and get in touch if you want to know more.
So far we have had winners from USA, Russia, Ukraine, Thailand, Spain, Germany, UK
I am just about back in the land of the living after last weekend. The festival definitely built on what we achieved last year and if half our plans come to fruition for 2015 we will continue to grow.
First of all I would like to thank some people. During the awards evening I confessed to having a terrible memory for names, so, learning from last year's forgetting to thank a team member, I refused to name names and generally thanked the world at large for being a good egg. I would like to make amends, but in doing so will no doubt get sidetracked and forget an important participant, but here goes.
The event was an amazing experience but one thing struck me as I spoke to people, everyone was smiling.
The Travel and Tourism students led by Dan Baker (lecturer) from LCC were brilliant throughout and took good care of us all, team and delegates alike. The fact that they had a long day, with some of them working a straight 14 hours, didn't stop them smiling.
We raised more money for Cancer research than last year, and although the final figures are not yet known it is in the hundreds, there is still a chance to grab a souvenir brochure which will add to the total. They will be onsale on the website store very soon, I haven't got that far yet.
Thanks to the tech team who were sponsored and run by Clockwork Eye Video Productions. Gareth, Mick and Bruce were challenged this year, mostly because of my showbiz demands, and were working on the presentation all the way through the festival, so it was a good job they had watched all the films during production of the show reels. Without them we would have no festival, thanks also to the college AV leader Jenny Aleksandrowicz who worked quietly behind the scenes to ensure all the hardware worked properly, and help supply the sound equipment for the awards evening.
You all know what John Slemensek does for the festival publicity department with his tweeting and artwork, he comes to the team via sponsors Juju Art Agency who were also VERY much responsible for my hangover. John has made RATMA friends around the world and has visited other small festivals and offered help and encouragement to everyone who meets him, it is as much down to his faith in RATMA and the team as to all the other element put together that has got us into planning our 3rd year.
These are the main team players but not the only ones to thank, there is the college marketing team, the college management, security and housekeeping staff and the Picture House staff who are like the lubrication for the RATMA machine, not seen in the limelight but without whom the festival would just grind to a halt. Thanks to Charles Morris, the owner of the Picture House for giving of his facilities and staff free of charge, the community of Keighley owes this man a massive debt of gratitude for keeping the 100 year old cinema running.
The sponsors this year have been brilliant, Steve Seymore from our main backers The Airedale Shopping Centre has been an inspiration. The pop-up cinema idea came from him and his team. The encouragement and belief, not in what RATMA is, but what it will be, has been a source of extra drive that has spurred us on and will help us to reach out further.
The Star Centre crew, who are soul mates when it comes to vision and motivation. who gave of their time, resources and copious amounts of Costa coffee to keep me going. Also hosted the Thriller/Scifi genre in their amazing facility theatre. If you are thinking of filming a space related film check out their website, it will blow you away.
I would also like to thank and commend the motor vehicle students who helped conceive and develop the RATMA film festival from day one, in the tiny classroom DN09, one dark November morning. During that session, Karl, Liam, Rohman and Abas, along with half a dosen others in the class and I, played around with ideas, ambitions, concepts and names until we were aware that we had overrun the lesson time and accidently created a worldwide phenomenon. These guys came back this year and organised the venues, moved people, equipment and furniture from 8 in the morning to 9,30 in the evening. They managed to cope with arising problems and made sure delegates were happy and where they wanted to be, with a smile and friendly banter. They drained walkie talkie batteries and wore out shoes as they tirelessly nurtured what has become their baby. The RATMA International Film Festival, as it has become, started with their vision, to raise money for Cancer Research UK and make a difference. Karl and Liam were venue managers on the day and Abas was head of projection and sound as well as being one of the best roadies in the team. Rohman was PR again this year and made sure invitations were sent out and the civic reception was organised.
Rohman finished his course last year at LCC and the other three finish their current course this term, but we know we will be relying on them for many years to come.
As for Drystone Radio, it was caught by the RATMA bug from the first meeting with Hollie Cooper during her drivetime show. We were made very welcome in the studio and when Gareth and I explained what we were about to do they insisted that they were allowed to get onboard and help, culminating in live coverage onsite during the festival and some welcome publicity before and after. Thank you guys, there seems to be a lot of film enthusiasts at the station.
On the subject of publicity, thanks in no short measure has to go to The Keighley News who have constantly kept us in the public eye and sponsor the People's Choice Award, which is given to the director whose film was voted for by the delegates. This award means a lot to the festival because it captures the essence of RATMA. Special thanks to Richard Parker and David Knight.
I must also say thank you to the people who came and supported us on the day, the delegates and invited guests along with directors and actors who travelled from far and wide, not least our new friends from Berlin who turned up on Friday night looking for somewhere to sleep, a special thanks to Angela Schuster and Martin Rattke who inspired us to introduce a brand new award this year for the furthest travelled filmmakers. I presented them with a Ratma on Saturday night in front of the photographers, and we will name the trophy after her film "Die Reise" as it means "the Journey", the trophy will be known as Die Reise Award, and will be presented each year.
So finally, to all you filmmakers around the world, I save the final and biggest thank you to you. Without the trust and support of some brilliant and inspiring directors from every corner of our planet we would be watching kittens playing pianos. The event celebrates the skill and mastery of the 10 minute film, something I have grown to recognise and appreciate, without the luxury of time and budget you manage to create such amazing pieces of work. I have had a massively enjoyable time watching them all as they came in, with some I cried, some I laughed out loud, some I just had to share and some I watched again and again. I have become such an enthusiast of the 10 minute film I have become a missionary for the genre, I want everyone I meet to get the same passion for your work.
I am a maths teacher and motor vehicle lecturer but I am beginning to become an expert in a field I had no idea about 2 years ago. I appreciate the genius and subtlety of a good 10 minute film, (in fact anything upto 10 minutes, I think the average run time this year was about 6 minutes), I see how you craft your work and it is just the same when you see a carpenter craft a chair makes you appreciate his skill but is doesn't make the chair less comfy, I can see the skill and beauty in what you do, but it only makes the experience more fulfilling. Thank you for allowing RATMA to thrive on your work, I can't wait to see what you have for us next year. ROLL ON 2015.
here it is;
(- a big thank you)
Tomorrow 12th and Sunday 13th April is your only chance to see the amazing film "Perruches" (Parakeets) in the UK. If it touches your emotions the way it touched mine then you are in for a treat. The film is a fantastically uplifting and optimistic film and is one of the best short films I have seen in a long time. Sadly it is a couple of minutes too long to be in the festival but we have been given the permission of Julie Voisin, the Director, to show the film to promote RATMA 2014.
We will also be showing films from RATMA 2013 to show people what they missed last year. Also we will be screening the new trailer for this years festival, including an exclusive Hollywood style introduction specially made for the pop-up cinema viewing only.
So come and join the fun, grab some popcorn and take the weight off. At the old Magenta shop next door to Bon Marche at the Airedale Shopping Centre in Keighley.
Come on - What else could you do in 10 minutes?
The selection process has been a difficult stage. I hate to judge peoples work because art is in the eye of the creator and I feel it is all valid. However it has not been unpleasant, we all had a great time watching film after film, each one bringing something new. If we continue to expand the entry quantity and quality the way this year has gone I can see the festival having to be spread over several days and venues.
I would like to thank everyone from sponsors, selection panel, volunteers and students of Leeds City College for their tireless efforts to get this far, we have one final push to get everything in place, the hard work starts here. I would like to also thank the film community for the fantastic support.
There is something exciting about downloading a new entry for RATMA and it doesn't matter what genre it's for or what country it's from, what excites me is anticipation. It's a bit like panning for gold, each scoop of riverbed could yield that golden nugget.
I believe we have found several such films that are head and shoulders above the rest, sometimes because the story is unique, sometimes the visual experience, dare I say cinematography, is outstanding, and sometimes it's the subject matter, But RATMA brings out something else, something that I find is the USP of the whole festival. What I'm talking about is the film maker who is able to give me the feature film emotion, experience and feeling in 10 minutes or less without dilution or compromise, and that is where the true genius lies.
The short film craft isn't anything to do with asking your audience to make allowances for lack of budget, or time, or equipment but bringing them into the story quickly and efficiently so they aren't able to draw breath before they understand the back story, the characters and what is happening now and caring about the next word, twist or development. This has as much to do with sound and vision as it has to do with clever dialogue and gestures. If I was able to put a finger on it precisely I would be making films myself, but when it happens to me I notice, I look for and recognise those genius devises that make me believe. of course a good sound and acting skills play their part, as does the rest of the package, but when I find myself caring, I know it happened again.
Thanks to everyone who has sent entries to this years RATMA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL because each shake of the sieve this year has something glittering in the bottom. The selection process starts on Monday and you have challenged us with such a varied helping of brilliance it will be difficult to make the cut so I wish you all the best of luck and thank you for your amazing support.
All money raised from ticket sales and donations will go to Cancer Research UK to support their amazing work finding treatment and cures for a disease that effects us all, directly or indirectly. Your support as filmmakers and festival delegates, sponsors and support team is vital and as honorary director and team leader I am humbled and inspired in equal measure by your participation. Thank you.
It looks like there will be both live radio coverage and webcast available for the event this year. so for those of you who have supported us from foreign climes will be able to follow the event as it unfolds.
We have had a fantastic response this year and as the deadline approaches we are getting ready to step up the ticket sales.
If you are able to attend this year, you will experience a completely original and unique experience. The world only screen surfing 10 minute film festival which will will this year be available online worldwide. of course you won't get to see all the films in their full glory unless you are here but you will be able to pick up on the atmosphere and enjoy the awards evening live from the picture house.
Tomorrow is Dday for entries so don't forget to get in your entry forms by midnight Saturday, you don't want to miss being involved in this one.
I'm sure it was Oscar Wilde who said "There is one thing worse than being talked about, and that's NOT being talked about.." I understand the sentiment but I don't find being talked about is bad at all, because when the people are saying kind things about you it can be the most encouraging thing in the world.
I would like to thank ALL the support we are getting from around the world, from companies that support us financially and otherwise, to the people who re-tweet our twitterings and spread the word virtually. This week Heather Whiston mentioned us in the blog www.theculturevulture.co.uk and it made me consider what we are about. Are we all things to all men or do we have an clear agenda?
We are a bifocal event with two clear purposes. Firstly, we have an aim to raise money and awareness for cancer research and we make no apology for this, cancer is a disease that will effect us all at some point in our lives either directly or by association and the more research that is done into the prevention, treatment and cures the better. Secondly, we are providing a platform for very short film-makers around the world to show their films the way they should be seen, in-front of a live audience and on the big-screen, without getting lost or overlooked among longer films.
There also has been some consequential benefits and ripples created by RATMA that we hadn't particularly foreseen and it was these other effects that I was prompted to consider.
The focuses of the festival have touched peoples lives in different ways, we get fantastic reactions and support from you filmmakers and we have friends from Cuba to Sweden from Ecuador to the Philippines and from LA to Moscow. The 10 minute limit was inspired by popular culture but we have tapped into a rich vein of creativity which has a right to be seen and has a place in the film industry. I have discovered that you have to be very clever to pack a story into a 10 minute frame, you have to be cunning to find a way of making your films without compromise and you have to be some of the most inventive and passionate people I have ever come into contact with, and I am so grateful that our festival has been accepted and moulded by you all into the event it is.
I have also been touched by the way enthusiastic support comes from the places you least expect it. Sometimes it is because we are so determined to tackle the issues of cancer and this speaks to people on a personal or philanthropic level, sometimes its art lovers looking for something different and free thinking.
But sometimes it is because we are promoting young people, our students, as an inspiration to society instead of believing that "the youth of today" are ungrateful, undisciplined and thoughtless as many would have us believe. Remember this film festival was the brainchild of 17 - 19 year old Motor Vehicle students who just want to make a small difference in an area they would normally feel hopeless, and it is the constant support of you all that has shown them that you believe they are making that difference and that it is worth the effort.
THANK YOU ALL
Tickets will soon be available to download from the website. This year we are going to try something really revolutionary, something a bit challenging for us all to raise loads of money for Cancer Research UK
Tickets will be priced at whatever price you want. The price you pay will be entirely up to you, you can donate as little or as much as you like, we are not going to tell you, you tell us, if it works we will do it again next year.
All money raised from ticket sales goes to Cancer Research UK and none of it will be going on expenses to put on the festival as we have sponsors to help with running costs. None of the volunteers or associate companies are being paid for their time.
Tell us what you think of this and any other topic.
It's that time again when we look at selling tickets and making people aware of what to expect from the worlds one and only screen surfing film festival.
We are going to have a pop up cinema in the Airedale Shopping Centre, organise some outdoor activities and make a public menace of ourselves in the media.
If you have any thoughts or know ways
I am the co-director, event coordinator, manager call it what you like but I am just the facilitator for RATMA. My role is to take ideas, polish them and try to make them reality for RATMA 2014