This year’s LOCO LONDON programme shows just how varied, ambitious and original comedy film-making can be. Whether your taste is warm and romantic or dark and outrageous; whether you like Hollywood glamour or Asian art house; whether you prefer the latest premieres or much loved classics, at last there’s a reason to look forward to January.
The wide variety of films at LOCO LONDON 2013 is only possible thanks to the support of Film London’s Cultural Film Exhibition Fund, through national lottery funding on behalf of the BFI. Thanks to the Creative Skillset Film Skills Fund we are also able to offer comedy training to young film-makers throughout 2013, kicking off with the return of our Kickstart Your Comedy Career course and a special Women In Comedy day, in partnership with Benefit. Please visit our LOCO Training page for details and booking for these.
Thursday 24th January
Laughter Yoga with UnitedMind 09:00 – 09:30 BFI Southbank
LOCO LONDON is here to lighten up London in the last week of January, the officially most miserable week of the year, so what better way to begin four days of the world’s best funny films than our free Laughter Yoga class at BFI Southbank?
Come and join us for LAUGHTER YOGA kicking off the LOCO LONDON Comedy Film Festival at 09:00 at BFI Southbank on Thursday 24th January 2013, in association with United Mind and Laughter Yoga.
LAUGHTER YOGA DOESNT INVOLVE YOGA POSES - there will probably be some stretching and lots of breathing but mainly lots of play and laughter which does take up space for movement. You don’t need to bring anything else apart from yourselves and a smille! The class will be run by Lotte Mikkelsen (Laughter Ambassador and Laughter Yoga Master Training (UK), Laughter Coach & Therapist, Gibberish Advisor). For more info go to unitedmind.co.uk and www.laughteryogaltd.co.uk.
Opening Night Preview: A Liar’s Autobiography 20.30 NFT1, BFI Southbank
Introduced by Terry Jones with Bill Jones, Ben Timlett and Jeff Simpson
LOCO LONDON will open with a special preview of A Liar’s Autobiography, the acclaimed 3D animated biography of Monty Python star Graham Chapman, introduced by Monty Python stars including Terry Jones, plus the film’s directors Bill Jones, Ben Timlett and Jeff Simpson.
The screening will be followed by What Have The Pythons Ever Given Us? a discussion of Monty Python’s influence on today’s leading comedy writers and performers hosted by Chris Hewitt. The panel will be Rebecca Front (The Thick Of It, On The Hour, Night Night), Tony Law (Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee 2012) and Ben Farrell (Head of Comedy at Objective Productions, makers of Peep Show, Fresh Meat and Parents) . Book tickets
+ A Liar’s Autobiography Exhibition Come and see drawings, stills and props from the film and learn the secrets behind it in our exclusive exhibition. Free entry. The Green Room, BFI Southbank Thursday – Sunday.
UK Premiere and party: Movie 43 22.00, Ritzy Cinema
Welcome to the UK premiere of the biggest, boldest, ballsiest Hollywood comedy of the year, starring Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman, Emma Stone, Richard Gere, Kate Winslet, Chloe Grace Moretz, Liev Schreiber, Kristen Bell, Gerard Butler, Stephen Merchant, Anna Faris, Uma Thurman, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Naomi Watts and a host of others. This all-star, gleefully offensive sketch comedy was co-created by Peter Farrelly (There’s Something About Mary), with directors including Brett Ratner, Elizabeth Banks and Griffin Dunne, so we don’t recommend you bring your grandmother. Unless she’s very, very dirty. Join us in the upstairs bar from 10pm for a pre-premiere party, followed by the screening (90mins) at midnight. Book tickets
Friday 25th January
UK Premiere: Klown 18.30 NFT1, BFI Southbank
Curb Your Enthusiasm meets Sideways as Frank decides to prove himself suitable father material by kidnapping his pregnant girlfriend’s young nephew for a truly outrageous weekend. Along with his adulterous best friend Casper, they have a series of disastrous adventures, from an armed robbery to a high-class brothel, while uncovering some shocking home truths. The year’s highest-grossing home-grown film in Denmark, its gleefully provocative exterior hides a surprisingly warm heart. It’s already been snapped up by Danny McBride and Hangover director Todd Philips for a US remake: don’t miss the original and best. Book tickets
““The funniest film of the year … plays like a superior version of The Hangover.” (The Village Voice)
“The Danish Sideways” (Simon Crook, Empire magazine)
LOCO Discovery Award: Wizard’s Way 20.40 NFT2, BFI Southbank
+ Introduction and Q&A with Metal Man
The LOCO Discovery Award is an annual prize for a British comedy feature film that does not yet have distribution. It’s a way of bringing new talent to a wider audience: last year’s winner Black Pond went on to be nominated for a BAFTA and a Guardian First Film Award. This year’s shortlisted films were 8 Minutes Idle, Up There and the winner, Wizard’s Way, a brilliantly twisted faux documentary about two friends who lead glorious lives online in a global role-playing game but struggle to adapt to “real” life when the game is closed down.
The film was made by Metal Man, a collective of three successful authors, Socrates Adams-Florou, Chris Killen and Joe Stretch, who will be introducing the film and taking questions afterwards. Book tickets
Saturday 26th January
UK Premiere: Le Skylab 15.15 NFT1, BFI Southbank
Kindly supported by Benefit Cosmetics.
We’re delighted to present this first UK screening of a new film written, directed by and starring Before Sunset star Julie Delpy as part of our focus on women in comedy. It’s the summer of 1979. High above the earth, the space station Skylab is out of control. And somewhere in Brittany, so is Albertine, a precocious eleven-year-old making her transition into teenage life and love while her extended family drink, dance, fondle and fight all around her. Newcomer Lou Alvarez is a delight as Albertine, and this award-winning comedy – part Wes Anderson, part Truffaut – is like a miniature French summer holiday in the dark of a London winter. Crack open the rosé and enjoy.
“Le Skylab … hits some really engaging highs, with some very touching observational comedy … The summer of 1979 is very beautifully evoked, with Albertine’s fussing, feminist mother fretting over the fall of debris from the crumbling NASA space station that is rumoured to be crashing down on southern France. Against this backdrop, Delpy beautifully captures the closeness and tensions of large families … a village disco scene provides the best adolescent comedy since Son Of Rambow” Damon Wise (Empire magazine)
Working Women day in association with Underwire, Funny Women and Benefit Cosmetics
Our Working Women Day is a day-long celebration of smart, funny women in comedy, with interviews, previews, and live performances with guests including Julia Davis, Katy Brand, Sara Pascoe, Caroline Quentin, Isy Suttie, Natalie Haynes and many more. Tickets are £65 and include the screening of Le Skylab and drinks hosted by Funny Women. Thank you to the lovely team at Benefit for their support. More information here.
UK Premiere: I Give It A Year 18.00 NFT1, BFI Southbank
+ Q&A with writer / director Dan Mazer. Kindly supported by Benefit Cosmetics.
Starting where other romantic comedies finish, I Give It a Year is a brand new Working Title comedy from the writer of Borat and Bruno that lifts the veil on the realities of the first year of marriage, starring a fantastic range of British talent including Rafe Spall, Stephen Merchant, Olivia Colman, Jason Flemyng and Minnie Driver, with Rose Byrne, Anna Faris and Simon Baker. Writer-director Dan Mazer will be joining us for an onstage interview after the screening.
London Premiere: Gayby 20.45 NFT3, BFI Southbank
+ interview with writer / director Jonathan Lisecki
So here’s the dilemma: You’re a smart, attractive and successful woman in your thirties. You want a baby, but haven’t met the right guy. So do you brave the dating websites, decide to go it alone or ask your gay best friend to have a baby with you, the, er, old-fashioned way? Acclaimed at SXSW in 2012, Gayby is an award-winning low-budget charmer that tackles a very contemporary topic with wit, warmth and one-liners.
We’re delighted that writer / director / co-star Jonathan Lisecki will be joining us live from New York for a Q&A after the screening, hosted by film-maker Abi Blackmore. Book tickets
FUNNY FAR EAST: Vulgaria 23.00 at Hackney Picturehouse
If you’ve ever made a film, or wanted to, this comedy about the movie business will strike a familiar chord, as world-weary producer To Wai-Cheung tells a class of film students about his adventures in the industry. But what begins as a familiar Hollywood-style satire soon escalates into a drug-fuelled, sex-crazed Hong Kong gangster movie, as To resorts to ever more extreme measures to complete his latest production. Fast-paced, funny and cheerfully vulgar, this was a hit in its native Hong Kong, and To’s relationships with his daughter and a starlet named Popping Candy (Dada Chen) offer up some unexpected heart along the way.
“Either the golden height of human imaginative endeavor or as profane and crazy as a meth-addicted stripper.” The Village Voice. Book tickets
Sunday 27th January
The Ephrathon 11.00 The Lexi Cinema
Celebrate the genius of the goddess of romcom Nora Ephron, who sadly died in 2012, with a triple bill of her best loved films Heartburn, Sleepless in Seattle and Julie and Julia, each with a special live introduction.
+ The Nora Ephron bake-off! Bring your best fruit pie to the screening and win a year-long Lexi membership and signed cookery book in our Nora Ephron-inspired bake-off, which will be judged by Crazy Baker and author Sophie Grey. Book tickets
The Pink Panther 13.00 NFT1, BFI Southbank FAMILY FILM SPECIAL
From the first bars of Henry Mancini’s sultry score, The Pink Panther glitters with beauty, wit and glamour. And, of course, with diamonds, as the hapless Inspector Clouseau hunts the mysterious Phantom, the world’s most daring jewel thief. This special 50th birthday screening is the perfect opportunity to introduce a new generation to the genius of Peter Sellers in his most iconic role. Book tickets
+ School of Slapstick and Kids Animation Workshop 1130 – 1300 Foyer, BFI Southbank
Come and dress up as Inspector Clouseau to search for the Pink Panther diamond, and make your own mini Pink Panther animation. Suitable for children 7-12. FREE to Pink Panther ticket holders.
FUNNY FAR EAST: UFO In Her Eyes 12 noon, Hackney Picturehouse
+ introduction and interview with writer / director Xiaolu Guo
Kwok Yun’s life is changed for ever when she thinks she sees a UFO hovering over Three Headed Bird Village. She alerts the authorities, who immediately send a team to investigate, while the village’s ambitious mayor (Mandy Zhang) spots a tourist opportunity. As money and visitors pour in, the village is transformed, and Kwok Yun has to adjust to a very different life. Adapted from her acclaimed novel by writer-director Xiaolu Guo, this award-winning comedy combines beautiful photography, winning performances and unforgettable images in a sparkling satire on China’s new consumerism.
We’re delighted to welcome the film’s writer / director Xiaolu Guo, who lives in Hackney, to introduce this special matinee screening and take questions after the film. Xiaolu was shortlisted for the Orange Fiction Prize for her novel A Concise English Chinese Dictionary for Lovers, and won a Golden Leopard at the Locarno Film Festival for her film She, A Chinese. Book tickets
LOCO and LUX present Artists in Comedy 14.00 – 18.00 Blue Room, BFI Southbank
Many of the world’s most exciting and challenging moving- image artists use comedy in their work. This unique look at humour in art film combines screenings, discussions and a chance to meet some of London’s brightest young artists. Featuring work from Lucy Pawlak, John Wood and Paul Harrison, Erica Eyres, Patrick Goddard, Heather Phillipson, plus many more.
More information and tickets here.
Short Comedy Film Showcase 16.00 NFT2, BFI Southbank
Short films aren’t always noted for laughs. But this selection from 2012’s LOCO London submissions is a giddy, gleeful showcase of every form of humour, from quick sketches to beautifully developed characters, from the most surreal to the most menacing, from giants of the genre to first-timers, and from live action to animation. It’s the ideal introduction to short film. Book tickets
Join us in benugo lounge after the screening to meet the filmmakers.
Closing Night Preview: Robot and Frank 18.20 NFT1, BFI Southbank
When Frank, a retired jewel thief, shows signs of losing his memory, his children give him a robot butler to care for him, and salve their consciences. But Frank soon has other ideas for his super-smart new sidekick, and the two begin planning a robbery. Part classic caper movie, part topical meditation on ageing, Jake Schreier’s witty Sundance award winner is refreshingly unsentimental, and beautifully played by a sparkling cast including Frank Langella, Peter Sarsgaard, Susan Sarandon, Liv Tyler and James Marsden.
We are delighted to be joined live from Los Angeles by director Jake Schreier for this special screening.
Friday 8th February
Special screening: Wreck-it Ralph 18.00 NFT1, BFI Southbank
Tired of living his 8-bit existence as a bad guy in an 80s style arcade game, Wreck-It Ralph leaves Fix-It Felix Jnr and the game’s other good characters in search for a purpose, as he moves through other arcade games and finds himself up against the baddest guy of them all — King Candy. We’re delighted that director Rich Moore and actor Sarah Silverman will join us for a Q&A after this screening. Book tickets.