Diane A. Rodgers Researcher Blog: Behind the Scenes at Glasgow Film Festival
In this blog post, Diane describes her experience of giving a talk on Fact, Fiction and Folklore in Film at the Centre for Contemporary Arts as part of the ‘Behind the Scenes’ events of Glasgow Film Festival in March 2022.
The event was arranged by ‘Young Selectors’, a group of 18–21-year-olds with a passion for film, and the event itself was targeted at 15-25-year olds. To accompany the event, the young people chose a screening of a wonderful Iranian folk horror film Zalava (2021) in which a sceptical military officer finds his beliefs tested by an enigmatic exorcist when investigating reports of demonic possessions in a remote village.
I was able to provide some background and context to the purpose and use of folklore on screen, its history in British film and television and a discussion about the prevalence of folkloric themes in international examples of film, including consideration of Zalava specifically in the wider context of Iranian cinema. I also spoke about the genre of folk horror and its increasingly popular use as a mode and style across many forms of media including video games, literature, music, podcasts and creative internet projects.
The young people who had helped arrange the event were passionate about and interested in the subject, and were extremely welcoming and friendly. There were some brilliant questions from the audience too ranging from filmmakers keen to incorporate folklore in their own work to broader philosophical questions about folklore and the collective unconscious. I of course felt like I came up with much better answers for once I was on the train home, but it was a wonderful event to be a part of and a nice reminder to receive a series of photos from my talk at their event.
Diane A. Rodgers is a Senior Lecturer in Media, Arts and Communications at Sheffield Hallam University and a CCRI PhD candidate conducting doctoral research relating to folklore and folk horror in ‘wyrd’ 1970s British Film and Television.