Basic Tech Set-up for Film Screenings

Tips, specs and software for perfecting your DIY film screening

At the May Scalarama Glasgow meet-up, Eileen Daily (Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, Document Film Festival, Picture Window) gave a presentation and led a discussion on basic tech set-up for DIY/non-theatrical film screenings, covering film formats, how to prepare films to get the best presentation and what free software is available to help you do all of this easily.

We’re hosting Eileen’s PowerPoint (above), which formed the basis of her presentation and covers basic terminology, ideal technical specs and useful guides to that free software (plus hot-links to download it).


Scalarama Glasgow is running monthly meetings in the lead-up to September’s season of DIY film programming. They’re aimed at helping exhibitors brand-new and experienced alike to put on films, and each month has two invited experts on different aspects of film exhibition. They’re free and open to all, full details here.

If you have any questions or could use some advice, get in touch with us here: info@matchboxcineclub.com

A Guide To Glasgow Venues

A detailed list of Glasgow venues capable of screening films, compiled for Scalarama 2019

For Scalarama 2019, we commissioned Sam May (University of Glasgow) to compile this detailed list of all the venues in Glasgow that are capable of screening films. The list includes contact details, hire costs, technical set-up, accessibility information and hopefully all the other information you might require (general information on licensing here). We’ll do our best to keep all this information up-to-date, but it’s certainly accurate as of May 2019.

If you have any queries, or to add your venue, please email info@matchboxcineclub.com.

You can also download the list as a PDF here or in large-print format here.


Andrew Stewart Cinema (UofG)
9 University Avenue, Glasgow G12 8QQ (Kelvinbridge Subway)
Michael McCann | Michael.McCann@glasgow.ac.uk
(0)141 330 3803
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: 16/35mm film projection facilities with Dolby surround sound; Video and DVD available.
Capacity: 138 seated
Cost: Technician’s cost of £15ph
Accessibility: Limited wheelchair accessibility through fire exits

Argyle Street Arches
253 Argyle St, Glasgow G2 8DL (Glasgow Central, St Enoch’s Subway)
Abi Crichton | events@argylestarches.co.uk
(0)345 241 6253
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: No equipment provided, would have to be externally hired
Capacity: Maximum 400, depending on space used
Cost: £2,000 plus VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with disabled toilets. No hearing loop. Guide dogs welcome

Avant Garde
34-44 King Street, Merchant City, Glasgow, G1 5QT (St Enoch’s Subway)
Duty Manager | info@avantgardemusicbar.com
(0)141 552 7123
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projection screen only – no projector or audio equipment
Capacity: 80 (Basement space)
Cost: £100
Accessibility: No wheelchair accessibility or hearing loop

Barras Art and Design (BAaD)
54 Calton Entry, Glasgow G40 2SB (High Street station)
Harry (Events Coordinator) | events@baadglasgow.com
(0)141 552 6279
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: LED screen, 2.5×4.5m. Built in sound system
Capacity: 350 theatre-style seating
Cost: Free for venue hire, but LED screen hire is £500
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with disabled toilets

Blackfriars
36 Bell St, Glasgow G1 1LG (High Street station)
Ross McLelland | info@blackfriarsglasgow.com
(0)141 552 5924
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Cinema screen and projector with HDMI compatability
Capacity: 50 seated
Cost: £150
Accessibility: No disabled access

Category Is Books
34 Allison Street, Glasgow, G42 8NN (Queen’s Park station)
Fi and Charlotte | categoryisbooks@gmail.com
(0)141 463 4934
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Basic projector and screen hung from the back bookshelves
Capacity: 30 capacity, 12 seats on site, welcome to bring more
Cost: Pay what you can, suggested is £20ph to cover staff costs
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, autism friendly venue

Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA)
350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow (Cowcaddens/St George’s Cross subway)
Alex Misick | alex@cca-glasgow.com
(0)141 352 4919; (0)7804 606 954
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Cinema equipped for 16mm, 35mm and digital projection; Theatre equipped for digital projection
Capacity: 74 (cinema), 144 (theatre)
Cost: Free (if included as part of open-source programme offer); tech hire at £15 p/h for a minimum of four hours.
Accessibility: Wheelchair access; disabled toilet, hearing loop

Cinemor 77
Yurt and Pop-up Cinema, mobile; based in Glasgow
Gary Thomson/Neill Patton| cinemor77@gmail.com
07796996184
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Various Projector screens, High Quality – Projectors (HDMI), BluRay, Macbook, Laptop, PA and speakers
Capacity: Various depending on location & set up, Yurt seats 25 Adults or 40 kids with bean bags, cushions & blankets included
Cost: Hiring fees negotiable
Accessibility: Yurt – Wheelchair accessible

Cineworld Renfrew Street
7 Renfrew St, Glasgow G2 3AB (Buchanan Street subway)
Duty Manager | renfrewstreet@cineworld.co.uk
(0)1413536289
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Sony 4K Digital Projection systems, with surround sound. DVD/Blu-ray also available
Capacity: 100 seat theatre
Cost: £750 (including film license)
Accessibility: Wheelchair access, disabled toilets. hearing loops

Citizen M
60 Renfrew St, Glasgow G2 3BW (Cowcaddens Subway)
John Rush | citizenrush@citizenm.com
(0)20 3519 1111
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 6x8ft screen. Projector set up with HDMI and USB connections
Capacity: 50 seated
Cost: £450 per screening
Accessibility: Disabled access and toilets, no hearing loop

Creative East End
200 Gallowgate, Glasgow G1 5DR (High Street station)
Jennifer McGlone | jennifer@creativeeastend.com
(0)141 552 2501
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Both venues have screens, speakers and projectors with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 40 seated (venue 1), 50 seated (venue 2)
Cost: Hire price dependant on the type of film screened
Accessibility: Wheelchair spaces in screen, no hearing loop at present

Drygate Brewing Co.
85 Drygate, Glasgow G4 0UT (High Street station)
Michael Haughey | events@drygate.com
(0)141 212 8815
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Screen and projector with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 240 theatre style and 150 cabaret style
Cost: Prices vary depending on availability/notice; standard is £500 + VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with lifts and disabled toilets.

Engine Works, The
23-25 Lochburn Rd, Glasgow G20 9AE (60 bus to Maryhill Library)
Events Team | hello@theengine.works
(0)141 945 3180
Licensed for screenings: No (but open to applying for one)
Tech: Fully A/V equipped with a PA system
Capacity: 160 seated
Cost: £1,250 (Weekdays)
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets on all levels

Everyman
Unit 3-5, Princes Square, Glasgow, G1 3JN (Buchanan Street subway)
Claire Miller | privatehire@everymangroup.com
(0)203 145 0502
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Cinema with screen and projector; DCP, 35mm and Blu-ray
Capacity: 70 seated
Cost: Prices vary on a case by case basis
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, accessible toilets. Infrared system for audio description and hearing assist

Flying Duck, The
142 Renfield Street, Glasgow, G2 3AU (Buchanan Street subway)
Tom Clarke | tom@theflyingduck.org
(0)141 564 1450
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Screen and projector with HDMI compatability
Capacity: 50 seated
Cost: £30
Accessibility: No wheelchair accessibility

GFT
12 Rose Street, Glasgow, G3 6RB (Cowcaddens subway)
Duty Manager | privatehires@glasgowfilm.org
(0)141 332 6535
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: 2K digital, 35mm, 70mm, Panavision 3D, Beta SP, Digibeta (£50 charge), DVD, Blu-Ray, VHS and laptop (Cinema 1); 2K digital, 35mm, Beta SP, Digibeta (£50 charge), DVD, Blu-Ray, VHS and laptop (Cinema 2); 2K digital, Beta SP, Digibeta (£50 charge), DVD, Blu-Ray and laptop (Cinema 3)
Capacity: 394 (Cinema 1) 142 (Cinema 2) 60 (Cinema 3)
Cost: Prices vary and screens are subject to availability
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, disabled toilets, hearing loop

Glad Cafe, The
1006A Pollokshaws Road, Glasgow, G41 2HG
Joe, Kim | joe@gladcafe.co.uk, kim@gladcafe.co.uk
(0)141 636 6119
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Screen with HD film projector and Blu-Ray player
Capacity: 55 seated
Cost: Sunday – Thursday: £100, Friday to Saturday: £150
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with disabled toilets

Glasgow Guild, The
265 Renfrew St, Glasgow G3 6TT (Charing Cross station)
John, Jonathan | n/a
(0)141 246 1062
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 1.5×2.5m projection screen with projector (not HD)
Capacity: 60 seats
Cost: Refer to venue
Accessibility: Steps at the entrance so limited wheelchair accessibility

Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
2 Sauchiehall St, Glasgow G2 3NY (Buchanan Street subway)
Laura Curran | laura.holms@glasgowlife.org.uk
(0)141 353 8050
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: 6ft projection screen, HDMI-compatible projector and sound system
Capacity: 100 theatre-style
Cost: £750 plus VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessibility, disabled toilets and hearing loop

GMAC
Fifth Floor, Trongate 103, Glasgow, G1 5HD (St Enoch subway)
Joanna Healy | hello@gmacfilm.com
(0)141 553 5400
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Cinema with screen, HD projector and built-in sound
Capacity: 48 seated
Cost: £300 (includes license fee)
Accessibility: Accessible building for wheelchair users, no hearing loop

Griffin, The
266 Bath St, Glasgow G2 4JP (Charing Cross station)
Duty Manager | hello@thegriffinglasgow.co.uk
(0)141 331 5170
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Screen and projector with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 80 cabaret style, 50 theatre style
Cost: £150
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with disabled toilets

Grosvenor, The
24 Ashton Lane, Glasgow, G12 8SJ (Hillhead subway)
Duty Manager | info@grosvenor.co.uk
(0)141 339 8444
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Cinema with screen and projector. DCP, VHS, 35mm and Blu-ray
Capacity: 102 (1 wheelchair space) both rooms
Cost: Weekday evening – £500 plus VAT, Weekend evening – £650 plus VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessibility

Handmade Burger Co.
78 St Vincent Street, Glasgow, G2 5UB (Buchanan Street subway)
Ben (Events Manager) | events@handmadeburger.co.uk
(0)121 374 2496
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Blu-Ray and AVI through a 120” HD 1080p; surround sound system
Capacity: 20 seated
Cost: £100
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, with disabled toilets

Icebox Arts and Music Centre
Unit 2, St Luke’s Business Estate, Glasgow, G5 0TS (Bridge Street subway)
Jamie (Events Team) | theiceboxglasgow@gmail.com
No phone number, bookings done via email or Facebook page
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector with HDMI compatibility, 8.5x5ft wall space, built in surround sound system. Venue also allow external projectors and portable screens to be brought in
Capacity: 80 seated
Cost: £50
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible; accessible toilets pending

ISO
65 Virginia Street G11TS (Queen Street station)
Ciara Dunne | studio.manger@isodesign.co.uk
(0)141 572 9150
Licensed for screenings: No (In the process of obtaining one)
Tech: Fully A/V equipped, screen with projector with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 40 seated
Cost: £60 for Scalarama screenings
Accessibility: Basement venue with no wheelchair accessibility

Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel
11 Blythswood Square,Glasgow, G2 4AD (Cowcaddens subway)
Laura Gillespie | conference@kimptonblythswoodsquare.com
(0)141 248 8888
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Cinema screen with built in speakers and projector with DVD compatibility only
Capacity: 44 seated
Cost: £350 flat rate (includes choice of film and popcorn for attendees)
Accessibility: Wheelchair spaces and hearing loop within the screening room

Kinning Park Complex
43 Cornwall Street, G41 1BA (Kinning Park subway)
Events Coordinator | hello@kinningparkcomplex.org
(0)141 419 0329
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector and screen (£10 hiring costs)
Capacity: 75 (Downstairs Hall) 120 (Upstairs Hall)
Cost: £37.50ph
Accessibility: Downstairs hall is wheelchair accessible; ground floor toilets

Lighthouse, The
11 Mitchell Lane, Glasgow, G1 3NU (Glasgow Central station)
Melissa Kerrigan | melissa.kerrigan@glasgow.gov.uk
(0)141 276 5360
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: HDMI compatible projector with a white wall, built in sound system
Capacity: 100 seated
Cost: £195 plus VAT for evening screenings
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, lift to all floors. Accessible toilet

Loks Bar & Kitchen
16 Newlandsfield Rd, Glasgow G43 2XU (Pollokshaws East station)
Nikki Clow | events@loksbarandkitchen.co.uk
(0)141 632 5727
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 12ft screen and HDMI projector
Capacity: 180 seated
Cost: £50 plus VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, disabled toilet, no hearing loop

Market Gallery
334 Duke Street, Glasgow, G31 1QZ (Bellgrove station)
Alice Andrews | market@marketgallery.org
(0)141 556 7276
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projectors and projection screens available on request
Capacity: n/a
Cost: Venue is not available for hire, event proposals to their committee
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible

Nice N Sleazy
421 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3LG (St George’s Cross subway)
James (Events Manager) | sleazys@googlemail.com
(0)141 333 0900
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Portable screen, projector with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 60 seated
Cost: Monday-Thursday, Sunday: £60. Friday/Saturday: £100
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

Old Fruitmarket
87-101 Albion St, Glasgow G1 1NQ (Glasgow Queen Street station)
Sarah McLeary | Sarah.McLeary@glasgowlife.org.uk
(0)141 276 8441
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: No projectors or screens; technician £25ph
Capacity: 600 theatre-style
Cost: £2,450 plus VAT, with a 10% box office commission
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, Sennheiser infrared hearing systems

Old Hairdressers, The
22 Renfield Lane, Glasgow, G2 5AR (Glasgow Central station)
Rob, Sinead | theoldhair@gmail.com
(0)141 248 9558
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Screen and projector (HDMI); Sound engineer and PA system
Capacity: 50 seated
Cost: £50
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

On The Fringe
Shawlands Shopping Centre, 126 Kilmarnock Road
Meg Curran | meg@thesouthsidefringe.org.uk
(0)141 632 4200
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Basic screen and projector set-up; £4ph hiring cost
Capacity: 30 theatre-style
Cost: £15ph, or £40 for a 3-hour block
Accessibility: Ramp access to building, no disabled toilets

Panopticon (Britannia Panopticon Music Hall)
117 Trongate, Glasgow G1 5HD (High Street station)
Judith Bowers | info@britanniapanopticon.org
(0)141 553 0840
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Cinema screen with projector
Capacity: 100 seated
Cost: Minimum £200
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

Pipe Factory, The
42 Bain St, Calton, Glasgow, UK, G40 2LA (High Street station)
Verity Hocking | verityhocking@thepipefactory.co.uk
(0)779 531 2291
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: No equipment provided
Capacity: 30 chairs for screenings
Cost: £75
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

Platform
The Bridge, 1000 Westerhouse Rd, Glasgow, G34 9JW (Easterhouse station)
Niamh Tumilty | hires@platform-online.co.uk
(0)141 276 9670
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector, 3x4m screen, or 7x12m surface. Loudspeakers
Capacity: 210 seated
Cost: Hiring costs negotiable
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, accessible toilets, induction loops, scooters and guide dogs welcome.

Rost
49 Bell Street, Glasgow, G1 1NX (St Enoch subway)
Paul Sweeney | paul@rost49.com
(0)141 387 9469
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 3×2.5m screen, with a 1080p HD projector
Capacity: 60 seated
Cost: Hiring costs are negotiable, happy to support
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

Rum Shack, The
657 – 659 Pollokshaws Rd, Glasgow G41 2AB (Queens Park station)
Shaun Galbraith | shaun@rumshackglasgow.com
(0)141 237 4432
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector (HDMI), 230x300cm screen, built-in sound system
Capacity: 45 seats availble, space for 70 with external seating hire
Cost: Hiring costs vary, technician costs £12ph (min 4 hours)
Accessibility: Not fully accessible but assistance available

Saint Luke’s
17 Bain Street, Calton, G40 2JZ (High Street station)
Chae Houston | chae@stlukesglasgow.com
(0)141 552 8378
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: Projector screen and speakers only, no projector
Capacity: 225 theatre style
Cost: £500 plus VAT
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible

Seamore Neighbourhood Cinema, The
304 Maryhill Road, Glasgow, G20 7YE (St George’s Cross subway)
Ross Hunter | rosshunter@centralhalls.org
(0)755 201 1508
Licensed for screenings: Yes
Tech: 5m screen, 6500 lumens HD Projector, great active speakers, a Blu-Ray player and capacity to play straight from a laptop.
Capacity: 129 leather seats, can extend to 200 if necessary
Cost: £29ph for Scalarama events
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible; accessible toilets. Able to subtitle films on request.

Sloans
108 Argyle St, Glasgow G2 8BG (Glasgow Central station)
Rachel Farmer | info@sloansglasgow.com
(0)141 221 8886
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 6x11ft screen available to hire
Capacity: 110 theatre seating
Cost: £200 Sun-Thurs, £400 Friday and Saturday
Accessibility: No wheelchair access

South Block
60-64 Osborne Street, Glasgow, G1 5QH (Argyle Street station)
Ishbel (Reception) | southblock.reception@waspstudios.org.uk
(0)141 271 4700
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Portable projector screen and projector with HDMI compatibility
Capacity: 30 theatre-style
Cost: £37ph for evening screenings
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, accessible toilet

Space, The
257 London Road, G40 1PE (High Street station)
Lori Lynch | lori@thespacescotland.org
(0)141 237 1221
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector screen, projector (HDMI) and sound engineer available
Capacity: 100 seated
Cost: £20ph with £15 PA system hire
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible

Stereo
22-28 Renfield Ln, Glasgow G2 6PH (Buchanan Street subway)
Ian Findlay-Walsh | monostereomutations@gmail.com
(0)141 222 2254
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Projector: Optoma 1080p, HDMI compatible
Capacity: 100 seated
Cost: £100-£120 for 18+, £200 for 14+ event
Accessibility: No wheelchair

SWG3
100 Eastvale Pl, Glasgow G3 8QG (Partick subway)
Rosie (Events Team) | rosie@swg3.tv
(0)141 337 1731
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: 8ft 16:9 projection screen with projector and sound system
Capacity: 50 seated (Poetry Club venue)
Cost: Dependent on availability and popularity of the venue at the time
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, accessible toilet

Tramway
25 Albert Drive, Glasgow, G41 2PE
Dean Browning | dean.browning@glasgowlife.org.uk
(0)141 276 0950
Licensed for screenings: No
Tech: Basic screen and projector set up with built in sound system
Capacity: 90 seated (Tramway 4)
Cost: Hiring fees negotiable
Accessibility: Lift access, accessible toilets on all levels


Scalarama Glasgow is running monthly meetings in the lead-up to September’s season of DIY film programming. They’re aimed at helping exhibitors brand-new and experienced alike to put on films, and each month has two invited experts on different aspects of film exhibition. They’re free and open to all, full details here.

If you have any questions or could use some advice, get in touch with us here: info@matchboxcineclub.com

FHS-Lock-Up

A Basic Guide to Licences for Film Screenings

Ever wanted to screen a film? Our straightforward guide will tell you what licences you need to screen films in Scotland, how to get them and how to get started

When we started screening films we knew there was stuff we didn’t know, or assumed was probably wrong – whether through wilful ignorance or plausible deniability, we definitely didn’t do things correctly straight out the gate. This is true of a lot of film events, and usually in good faith. Briefly, we figured out what we needed to know and that one problem is that there aren’t necessarily straightforward/simple answers to some basic questions. Licensing for film screenings can be like traversing shifting sands from one event to the next.

However, there are basics and we learnt them and this, here, is the skeleton of a presentation we gave in March 2019 as part of Scalarama Glasgow’s Programming and Licensing event at Glasgow Short Film Festival. You can download it as a two-page PDF here.

Why confirm licences?

  • Legally, you have to (¯\_(ツ)_/¯)
  • Threat of fines (and your venue can be classed as a “contributory infringer”)
  • The greater good (exhibitors, film makers, distributors and everyone in between depend on each other to sustain the film industry)
  • Access to funding and other support to help keep doing what you’re doing

These are the licences venues need to screen films anywhere in Scotland:

  • Cinema Licence (from your local council)
  • Entertainment Licence (from your local council)
  • Performing Rights Licence (PRS) (from PPL/PRS)

Depending whether or not you want to plan your screening (e.g. if you want to advertise your screening anywhere outside your venue or online), you will also need one of two kinds of licence:

  • Single Title Screening Licence (STSL, for planned screenings, free or not)
  • Public Video Screening Licence (PVSL, an umbrella licence for unplanned and/or “ambient”, free screenings and/or members-only orgs)
  • NB Filmbank’s Licence Wizard is a handy way to figure out which you need

You can confirm most licences from ‘gateway’ distribution companies who manage large libraries on behalf of major studios, for example:

 Or sometimes licences are held by individual distributors, for example:

Some tips for finding elusive licence holders:

Useful + more detailed guides: 


F.A.Q.

Q: How much is a film licence?

A: Depending on the context and source, it can be anywhere from £60 + VAT to several hundred pounds. Some distributors demand a percentage (often 35%) of final box take versus a minimum guarantee (MG), meaning you pay whatever is more.

Q: Can I haggle/negotiate?

A: You can try. Haggling is more commonplace in Europe and North America than in the UK. And some distributors, e.g. Filmbank, operate an online portal that doesn’t allow for it.

Q: Who will know if I don’t get a licence?

A: Distributors, especially the bigger ones, do keep an eye on screening activity and if they’re made aware of unlicenced screenings of their films, they will investigate. Most commonly, they’ll simply chase you to book it in. Other local exhibitors, including cinemas, will likely notice screenings that seem to be unlicenced too => side-eye and/or bad blood.

Q: Do I need a licence if my screening is free or for charity?

A: Yes. Although on rare occasions you may be granted a licence for free, you still have to confirm permission to screen with the licence holder.

Q: Do I need a licence if the director/star is coming?

A: Most likely. Unless the director is also the licence holder and/or the film doesn’t have distribution, they probably won’t manage the screening rights for their own film.

Q: If I own the DVD, can I screen it?

A: Not without a licence. However, the licence fee most likely will not cover screening materials (i.e. DVD, Blu Ray), which you usually must provide yourself.

Q: If someone released the DVD/Blu Ray, can they grant a screening licence?

A: Sometimes, but not always. The rights to distribute a film for home entertainment and the rights to distribute a film theatrically or non-theatrically are not essentially the same.

Q: What do I do if I’ve exhausted every avenue and explored all possibilities of finding a licence holder?

A: In the very unlikely chance you have (see Sophie Brown’s Point Break saga), there is the option to self-indemnify, meaning you make a record of your attempts to source the licence, reserve the box office take and prepare for the licence holder to eventually come forward. No-one recommends you do this.

Q: Which films are in the public domain?

A: There isn’t a definitive answer or resource for this. Websites that claim to be definitive are not and in any case are often based in the US, which is a different distribution territory that also has different copyright laws. On top of this, the legal status of films often changes over time. All you can do is research.


Scalarama Glasgow is running monthly meetings in the lead-up to September’s season of DIY film programming. They’re aimed at helping exhibitors brand-new and experienced alike to put on films, and each month has two invited experts on different aspects of film exhibition. They’re free and open to all, full details here.

If you have any more questions or could use some advice, get in touch with us here: info@matchboxcineclub.com

 

 

Cage, Cake and the Orgy

Matchbox Cineclub’s 2018 in pictures

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2018 was the year Matchbox Cineclub stopped doing monthly screenings and ended up screening twice as many films. We launched three film festivals (even if one was postponed till 2019) and our online shop, coordinated Scalarama events across Scotland and organised a six-date tour of the UK. We hosted a world premiere, several Scottish premieres and a bunch of lovely guests, while a project we originated continued on to the Scottish Borders and Spain.

It hasn’t always been easy but we’re proud of what we accomplished this year, working with some incredible venues and a lot of our best bright and brilliant pals. We’re hoping 2019 will be our best year yet, but it’ll definitely be hard to beat 2018. The biggest thanks, as always, to everyone who came out for a Matchbox Cineclub event – you’re the ones who make it worthwhile. We always love to hear from you, so if you have any thoughts on the past year, or the next, please let us know. In the meantime, here’s our 2018 in pictures…

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Cage-a-rama | After years of standalone pop-ups and our monthly residencies,  this was our first time trying a new format, the micro-festival: six films over three days and as much bonus content as we could cram in. Selling it out in the early days of January gave us the encouragement to keep going. Which is a bigger deal than it maybe sounds. We couldn’t have done it without the Centre for Contemporary Arts and Park Circus supporting what we do, and of course all the Cage fans, who came from across the UK and as far afield as Dresden, Germany. We’re very much looking forward to Cage-a-rama 2: Cage Uncaged in January 2019.

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Team Matchbox win the Glasgow Film Festival 2018 Quiz | Technically, Team GFF won, but since there were 18 of them and they had the inside scoop on their own programme, they were disqualified. We credit our victory to our ace in the hole, cine-savant Josh Slater-Williams. Also to the Nicolas Cage round. Thanks to the lovely Tony Harris (of Team GFF) for the photo!

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Turkish Star Wars 2K world premiere | A while back, our pal Ed Glaser came into possession of the only remaining 35mm print of Dünyayı Kurtaran Adam, AKA Turkish Star Wars. Once it was all cleaned up and newly translated subtitles added, we had the chance to host the world premiere of the 2K restoration (simultaneously with our pals Remakesploitation film club in London). The May 4th screening was sold out but free entry. To cover our technician Pat’s wages, we took donations (and as usual spent way too much time on special graphics for the occasion).

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Ela Orleans takes Cowards Bend the Knee to Alchemy | Our musical hero and good pal Ela Orleans took her live score for Guy Maddin’s Cowards Bend The Knee to the Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival in May. We originally commissioned Ela to write and perform her incredible new score during Scalarama 2017. Of course, 100% of the glory for the performances (Ela also later took Cowards to the Festival Periferia in Huesta, Spain), goes to Ela herself, but we’re very proud of the small part we have to play in the ongoing project. And, if you look very closely, you can see our logo in Alchemy’s Programme Partners on the screen behind Ela!

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Weird Weekend | After Cage-a-rama was a success, we wanted to do something similar in the format but with Matchbox’s more typical programming – the outcasts, orphans and outliers of cinema. So, Weird Weekend was born and Scotland’s first festival dedicated to cult cinema took place at CCA in June. Over two days, we mixed cult favourites with lost classics and brand-new films and welcomed guests like The Secret Adventures of Tom Thumb cinematographer Frank Passingham, Crime Wave star Eva Kovacs and Top Knot Detective co-directors Dominic Pearce and Aaron McCann. We also programmed a retrospective of our favourite local filmmaker Bryan M Ferguson’s shorts, and Bryan joined us for a post-screening Q&A. See Bryan’s latest work, including his celebrated music video for Ladytron,  here: bryanmferguson.co.uk.

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Alex Winter Q&A | The one and only Bill of Bill & Ted fame joined us via Skype after we screened his directorial debut Freaked at Weird Weekend. It was a fantastic screening and Q&A, all of it a mildly surreal high point. The whole thing was made totally normal, though, by the coolness of Alex and his team, who were also incredibly gracious in supporting our event with a bunch of press interviews. Of course, Alex is about to make Bill & Ted Face The Music, but these days he’s a pretty deadly documentary maker. See what he’s up to now: alexwinter.com.

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Our founder returns | Matchbox Cineclub founder (lately of Paradise and Moriarty Explorers Club and, most recently, Trasho Biblio) Tommy McCormick returned for a cameo at Weird Weekend. Screening Soho Ishii’s The Crazy Family was a long-held ambition for Tommy, so when we managed to confirm a screening for Weird Weekend, he returned to pass on Ishii’s special message for the audience.

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The Astrologer | We closed Weird Weekend with the Scottish premiere (and only the second UK screening) of Craig Denney’s The Astrologer (1976), such a deep cut that it can only be seen at screenings – no DVD, no VHS, no streaming, no torrent and very little chance it can ever be released. Bringing the DCP over from the States would have been 100% worth it anyway, before an unexpected onscreen mention for Glasgow melted everyone’s minds. Before all that, though, we got carried away with researching the mysterious and largely unreported story behind it and ending up writing the definitive 4,000-word article on it. Read it here!

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CCA Closure | KeanuCon postponed! After Cage-a-rama, we polled the audience to see which icon we might celebrate next – Merylpalooza had a good run but Keanu was the clear winner. We debuted our trailer at a GFT late night classic screening of Speed in March and scheduled KeanuCon for the opening weekend of Scalarama in September. Unfortunately, the GSA fire meant the nearby CCA was forced to remain closed indefinitely and, try as we might, we couldn’t find a suitable alternative venue for the dates. On the bright side, our Keanu Reeves film festival will finally arrive in April 2019. And it was all almost worth it for our Sad KeanuCon image.

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The World’s Greatest 3D Film Club | In July, our pals at Nice N Sleazy invited us to programme something there at the last minute. Their only specifications were for it to be something vaguely summery and fun. We had a bunch of red-blue anaglyph 3D glasses left over from when we screened Comin’ At Ya at The Old Hairdressers a couple of years ago, so we decided to screen Jaws 3D. When Sleazies had other free dates to fill, we later showed Friday 13th Part III and 1961 Canadian horror The Mask.

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Scalarama | We took a lead role in coordinating Scalarama activity across Scotland again this September. KeanuCon was meant to open activities in Glasgow, but luckily Pity Party Film Club were able to fill the void with an incredible Hedwig and the Angry Inch event. We also hosted a sold-out screening of B-movie documentary Images of Apartheid at Kinning Park Complex, teamed-up with Video Namaste for another Video Bacchanal, this time at The Old Hairdressers, and screened Joe Dante’s epic The Movie Orgy (see below). Before all that, though, we hosted the Scalarama Scotland 2018 programme launch in August at the Seamore Neighbourhood Cinema in Maryhill, with a special Odorama screening of John Waters Polyester. Our pal Puke (pictured) volunteered as a Francine Fishpaw ring girl to cue the scratch and sniff action.

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Joe Dante’s The Movie Orgy | We’d wanted to host this for a really long time and it took a lot of leg work, including a last-minute zoom to Edinburgh International Film Festival, to finally make happen. But it did! And, incredibly, Joe Dante himself recorded us an intro (pictured), after EIFF’s iconic Niall Greig Fulton introduced us to him in June and we got the OK to screen it. With CCA still closed, we had the opportunity to return to our old home, The Old Hairdressers, for this five-hour, sold-out screening. The film editor of the Skinny called it “Scotland’s movie event of the year”, which is daft but also we’ll take it.

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#WeirdHorror with Kate Dickie | We started off the Halloween season doing a 31 days of #WeirdHorror countdown, then when CCA’s oft-postponed opening was finally confirmed, we offered to do some last-minute screenings. The idea was to celebrate CCA reopening and maybe help spread the word – which, it was super busy anyway but it was a great opportunity to team up with our pals Pity Party Film Club and She’s En Scene for some co-screenings. The four-night pop-up series had an amazing climax with legendary local hero Kate Dickie very graciously joining us for The Witch and an in-depth Q&A afterwards.

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Matchbox Birthday Cake | Finally, this was just a very nice birthday surprise. Coming up in 2019, though, we have a LOT of surprises in store. First up, Cage-a-rama 2, Auld Lang Vine and KeanuCon. See you there!


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Joe Dante’s The Movie Orgy

A mind-bending predecessor to the modern mash-up, The Movie Orgy (1968) is also the Rosetta Stone for Joe Dante’s oeuvre and a must-experience for movie fans and cinephiles alike.

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Before Gremlins, before The Howling, before he started his career cutting trailers for Roger Corman, Joe Dante hosted the 7.5 hour All Night Once In A Lifetime Atomic Movie Orgy. An ever-evolving edit, it was a communal experience – a mind-bending predecessor to the modern mash-up with no definitive version. Matchbox Cineclub programmer Sean Welsh charts the evolution of The Movie Orgy through five key dates.

October 9th 1965, The Playboy Theater, Chicago

The first screening of An Evening With Batman and Robin, one of two key inspirations for The Movie Orgy. The other was Susan Sontag’s Notes on “Camp” (1964), which popularised the term and inspired the repackaging of the 1943 Batman serial as a single 4.5-hour programme. Audiences laughed at its phony climaxes, marveled at its blatant xenophobia, and it began touring college towns. When Dante caught it, at the World Theater in Philadelphia, he was particularly struck by the camaraderie of the crowd, who “came out into the lobby as if they’d just gotten off a sinking ship.”

Early 1966, Philadelphia College of Art, Philadelphia

Inspired, Dante, a second year student but already a programmer at PCA, decided to host his own Camp Movie Night. The exact date is lost to history, but Dante and collaborator Jon Davison rented the only complete serial available on 16mm in Philadelphia, The Phantom Creeps (1939). They stretched it to seven hours with serials, clips, ads, industrial films and cartoons from their 16mm collections. Its success meant several follow-ups, each a step towards what would shortly become The Movie Orgy, then variously The Movie Orgy 2, The Movie Orgy Strikes Back, Son of the Movie Orgy, Escape to Movie Orgy and Son of Movie Orgy Rides Again.

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March 8th 1970, Filmore East, New York

Although 1968 is commonly held as the term “The Movie Orgy” was first used for Dante and Davison’s project, the performance that film archivist and Orgy expert David Neary describes as “the most important Movie Orgy of all” came in 1970. 1970 was peak Movie Orgy for the pair, who employed dueling projectors (tipping their hats to Andy Warhol’s Chelsea Girls). Davison’s would show various features – in lieu of new serials – and Dante’s would interject, drawing on his panoply of 16mm weirdness. They took their cues from the audience, so no two screenings were alike. Press coverage of the Filmore Orgy drew the attention of Schlitz Beer, who sponsored Orgies to tour colleges for years. But when the new material the Orgy drew upon to keep it alive began itself to be infected with self-referential camp, it was time to call it a day. Dante, already in Hollywood, sold syndication rights for “The Video Orgy” to be screened on college campuses’ closed circuit TV networks.

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Credit: Dennis Cozzalio

April 22nd 2008, New Beverly Cinema, Los Angeles

The grand finale of Dante’s Inferno, a two-week retrospective at LA’s legendary rep cinema. Joining the scores of curious film fans were Davison, Allan Arkush, Bill Hader, Edgar Wright and Quentin Tarantino. Dante enjoined the crowd to move about, go outside, have a smoke, grab a pizza and wander back in. The Movie Orgy was always intended as a movie to be walked out on. But the director was curious to if it would play – have any relevance – after years in his vault. It brought the house down.

September 9th 2018, The Old Hairdressers, Glasgow

We’re screening the digital version Dante made for the New Beverly (not the 90min “UK cut” previously screened in London). It’s 4.5 hours long, the official Movie Orgy, “distilled, recaptured and re-curated”, according to archivist David Neary. It’s not the full, wild 16mm experience, of course, but there’s also no Blu Ray coming. “It’s more like a concert in a way,” Dante says, “It’s something that you really have to be there for.”

Sean Welsh


Joe Dante’s The Movie Orgy screens at The Old Hairdressers, Sunday 9th September

Facebook event here. Tickets here.

An edited version of this article originally appeared in the Scalarama 2018 newspaper.

Turkish Star Wars 2K Tour

Matchbox Cineclub team with Remakesploitation and Neon Harbor to tour Turkish Star Wars 2K around the UK for Scalarama 2018.

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Graham Humphreys poster for Turkish Star Wars 2K (on sale here)

When you become a fan of cult film, or maybe a person for whom films naturally become a cult, three things happen – first, you go deeper and deeper down the rabbit hole looking for stranger and more unusual films. Second, your affinity multiplies with curiosity to make you want to find out as much as you can about them. Thirdly, you want to share what you’ve found with as many people as possible.

Turkish Star Wars is the perfect film in that regard. Most people know it from terribly subtitled clips drawn from fourth generation VHS dubs. Its strangeness and its audacity, coupled with the absurdity of the supposed dialogue, will hook anyone’s attention. That version of Turkish Star Wars was one of the first films Matchbox Cineclub screened, and Turkish Remakesploitation one of the first topics I wrote about seriously – because I wanted to know just what the fuck was going on with these films.

Meanwhile, Ed Glaser and Iain Robert Smith separately pursued their passion for cult film inexorably toward Turkish Star Wars. It makes me very happy that our curiosity about incredibly strange films has brought us to the point that we can share the best possible version of Turkish Star Wars and tell people the incredible story behind it.

Notorious for the ways in which director Çetin İnanç edited footage from Star Wars into his own film, along with music from Raiders of the Lost Ark and Flash Gordon, Dünyayı Kurtaran Adam (1982) is the “holy grail” of remakesploitation cinema. The Man Who Saves the World revolves around two Turkish space pilots who crash-land on a desert planet enslaved by an evil wizard. Memorable sequences involve the heroes battling robots inspired by Battlestar Galactica and Forbidden Planet – plus mummies, skeletons, and multi-coloured yetis. Another sees them in starfighter “cockpits,” wearing motorcycle helmets, as footage from the Star Wars Death Star battle is projected behind them.

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For many years, the film circulated only in those low-resolution bootleg copies, but in 2016 a 35mm print of the film was discovered, and a 2K digital scan has been made so that the world can finally see the film the way it was intended. Because of the obvious rights issues around the film, there are currently no plans for a home DVD/Blu-Ray release so this Scalarama tour is the only way to see this new 2K version of Turkish Star Wars. Get yr tickets before they sell out!

Sean Welsh


Turkish Star Wars 2K UK tour dates:

14/09 Cameo Cinema, Edinburgh | Tickets

15/09 Square Chapel Arts Centre, Halifax | Tickets

19/09 Phoenix, Leicester | Tickets

22/09 Rio Cinema, London | Tickets

24/09 Connaught Cinema, Worthing | Tickets

28/09 Cube Microplex, Bristol (with Bristol Bad Film Club & Hellfire Video Club) | Tickets

Sad KeanuCon

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It’s with a very heavy heart that we have to announce the postponement of KeanuCon 2018 until 27th +28th April 2019.

Due to the GSA fire and CCA Glasgow‘s subsequent closure, it’s not possible for us to hold KeanuCon on the original dates, and the next workable dates for CCA (and for us, due to Cage-a-rama 2 in January) are in 2019, which we are glad to confirm.

All our efforts to find a suitable alternative location have sadly failed. Although we did come extremely close, trust that we worked very hard to exhaust all the possibilities.

We hope you’ll accept our apologies and realise we are as gutted as anyone to have to postpone KeanuCon. We had the line-up and a lot of the supporting programme locked-in and we were so excited to share it with you. The date change *does* have some positive implications for the programming and for other aspects of the weekend, but that will become clear in due course – ASAP. KeanuCon will be even more awesome for the date change, we promise.

On a more positive note, we still be taking part in the Scalarama Glasgow 2018 programme this September, with these events and at least one more TBA:

09/09 Joe Dante’s The Movie Orgy
27/09 Images of Apartheid + Q&A

Pity Party Film Club will now host the Scalarama Glasgow Opening Party – Hedwig & The Angry Inch – now on sale!

We’re sincerely very sorry for the disappointment, but watch this space for news of KeanuCon (and Cage-a-rama 2!)


KeanuCon was originally scheduled for 1st and 2nd September, 2018. It will now take place 27th + 28th April, at Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow.