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Introduction
1984/7

British International Super 8 Festivals, Leicester

"Super 8 is finally coming into its own" - Introduction to the 2nd British International Super 8 Festival catalogue

Part of the significance of the wide-ranging Super-8 film Festivals held in Leicester from 1984 to 1987 was that they took place as video began to push older formats out of the market. For the festival organisers - The Leicester Independent Film and Video Association - Super-8 millimetre film was far from redundant: "this leaves Super-8 with a smaller and more committed market and one that is more serious about film-making."

Despite struggles for funding, the events grew in scope and structure each year. Following the first festival, an exchange mechanism sprang up whereby British super-8 films would be distributed to similar festivals abroad, and international films would be sent to the festival in return. Works came in from Brussels, Cologne, Paris, Ann Arbour, Hong Kong, Berlin, Turin, Montealini, Montreal and Quebec. The third festival, held in 1986, introduced a touring component, visiting twelve cities during June and July. Events scheduled to accompany the 1986 festival included a special Gay and Lesbian day, "exotic cabaret" and Cordelia Swann's A Camera of One's Own featuring women's Super-8 films.

Tom Roberts

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Poster for the 3rd International Super 8 Festival, May/June 1986

Courtesy of Laraine Porter/Leicester Independent Film & Video Association
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