The little festival that squeezes itself into London's film calendar before the behemoth of the London Film Festival, Raindance Fest is a great way to acquaint yourself with smaller and more offbeat film fare from the UK and beyond. This is the film festival that backed now-acknowledged hits such as Memento, Old Boy, the Blair Witch Project, Pusher, Ghost World and Love Exposure.
The 2014 Raindance Film Festival, the 22nd, will take place from the 24th September – 5th October 2014 in central London (Piccadilly Circus), screening 100 feature films and over 150 short films.
The full programme won't be announced until 2 September, but the fest's 2014 opening night film was revealed this week to be Mike Cahill's (Another Earth) second feature: I Origins. A high concept, scifi mystery, the film won the Alfred P. Sloan Prize at Sundance earlier this year, it's Raindance show will be it's UK premiere, with Cahill himself in attendance to hold a Q&A after the screening. The film's official blurb announces it as:
"I ORIGINS, the second feature film from writer and director Mike Cahill, tells the story of Dr. Ian Gray (Michael Pitt), a molecular biologist studying the evolution of the eye. He finds his work permeating his life after a brief encounter with an exotic young woman (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey) who slips away from him. As his research continues years later with his lab partner Karen (Brit Marling), they make a stunning scientific discovery that has far reaching implications and complicates both his scientific and spiritual beliefs. Traveling half way around the world, he risks everything he has ever known to validate his theory. Also starring Steven Yeun and Archie Panjabi, the film is produced by Mike Cahill, Hunter Gray and Alex Orlovsky."
The opening night will then shift to the Cafe de Paris for a night of music, drinks and filmmaker hob-knobbing. Entertainment will be served up by filmmaker, actor and musician Roland Gift - lead singer of Fine Young Cannibals - in an exclusive London performance with his brand new band.