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Virgin launches flight film festival

Virgin Atlantic has joined forces with the National Film and Television School to showcase new film making talent onboard in its own Film Festival in the Sky. 

Over the next four months Virgin Atlantic will be screening 14 specially selected short films on its inflight entertainment system. Passengers can watch the films during their flight and then vote until the end of June to compile a shortlist of six films that will be shown onboard for a further three months.  During this time the finalists will be assessed by a panel of highly respected industry figures and a winner and two runners up will be chosen.  These three filmmakers will have their film screened onboard for a further three months.  The overall winner will receive Virgin Atlantic tickets and have their next film shown onboard to a potential audience of 5 million passengers.

The panel of judges consists of actress Brenda Blethyn, actor Nick Moran, Stephen Woolley, former chairman of the British Academy, and Sue Lion, Managing Director of the Encounters International Short Films Festival.

Nik Powell, Director of the NFTS, commented:

“It’s often hard for new filmmaking talent to get in front of the public - or for the public to get to see the film and TV makers of tomorrow before they become “names”.  Virgin’s onboard film festival is an inspired way to bring new filmmakers and their future audience together, and I hope everyone who views and votes enjoys the films as much as we enjoyed picking them for this competition.”


Stephen Woolley, celebrity judge, said:

“I’m delighted to be involved with this exciting collaboration.  It’s an excellent opportunity for the School’s new filmmaking talent to get their work seen by a wide audience, plus it promotes the fantastic work of the NFTS and ensures it continues to turn out world-class, award-winning talent.  Best of luck to all the students whose work is currently showing onboard.”

Lysette Gauna, Head of Brand for Virgin Atlantic, commented,

“We are delighted to be working with the National Film and Television School and supporting new up and coming film talent.  Virgin Atlantic has a reputation for award winning inflight entertainment offering a wide variety of independent films and documentaries in addition to the cinema blockbusters.  Through this new initiative our passengers will not only get a chance to see the best in new filmmaking but they will also help the celebrity judges give the next Mike Leigh or Shane Meadows their first step up the ladder.  We wish them all the best of luck.

All passengers who view the short films need to send their nomination to [email protected]  All those who enter will have the opportunity to win tickets to see the award winning hit musical, Billy Elliot, The Musical.

All Virgin Atlantic aircraft are fitted with personal seat back TV’s for every passenger.  V:Port, the latest in in-flight entertainment, has over 300 hours of Video and Audio on demand which allows passengers to stop, start, fast forward and rewind all the action.