Karen O’Hare is the driving force behind the festival and here she explains why she started the festival and what makes it unique:
“I am keen to make the festival work as I love film and I love the Southside and I feel that there are so few opportunities for Southsiders to get together socially as a community to celebrate and share all that is great about film, filmmaking and the Southside!
Southside Glasgow is not only the most ethically diverse place in Scotland, it is also a vibrant place, rich in culture and creativity. But the Southside has no cinema and the Glasgow Film Festival doesn’t come south of the Clyde so Southsiders cannot easily and locally access quality, independent and international films outside of what is screened in the city centre cinema chains.
What makes the festival unique is the also the fact that there is no cinema in the Southside so the festival screening venues will be pubs, clubs, church halls, artist studios and other community venues which means Southsiders will see films not only on their door step but in places where they would least expect it. Attending a talk, workshop or film over Southside Film Festival will be a unique experience.”
About Karen: she currently works at Screen Academy Scotland, a Skillset Film & Media Academy, where she develops, delivers and manages both a training programme for post graduate film students and short training courses for film & TV professionals in Scotland. She is also a BAFTA / Media Trust Youth Mentor and has recently helped a group of teeangers at the Scottish Spina Bifida Association make a short film.
Karen has volunteered for numerous film festivals since 1999 in lots of different roles from technical manager to projectionist, from runner to sitting on award juries.