The BFI’s annual LGBTI film festival BFI Flare has been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The BFI issued an emotional press statement saying that it had been forced to cancel the highly anticipated event.
BFI Flare statement:
“It’s with heavy hearts that we announce that, due to the scale and complexity of running a large international film festival with filmmakers set to travel from across the world, the BFI has taken the very difficult decision to cancel the 2020 edition of BFI Flare: London LGBTIQ+ Film Festival as the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly evolves”, the BFI said.
“BFI Flare is a very special and long standing festival with a loyal and dedicated following and we realise that this is a very disappointing situation for audiences, our staff and Festival teams and all of the incredibly talented and passionate filmmakers involved.
“We know this decision affects individuals in different ways and we respectfully ask people to please bear with us over the next days as we work through the impacts of cancellation and also look at ways of sharing some elements of BFI Flare digitally.
“If you have any specific press or publicity concerns please contact the BFI Flare press team (copied).
The BFI insisted the announcement was only related to BFI Flare programmes and events only.
BFI Southbank remains open and operational, unless advice from the Government and Public Health England changes.
Mediashotz, though, wonders, if the media world can’t come together in some way to save the event.
We are after all, living in the great age of digital media. It cannot be too hard to set up a pop-up Netflix-style digital service to ensure fans still get to enjoy all the films.
Perhaps even Netflix or terrestrial UK channel might be able to step in and help keep the showing going.
Or perhaps London TV channel, London Live, could even fit the LGBT Film Fest into its schedule somewhere.
We think this is very doable.