Starburst International Film Festival

Starburst International Film Festival

Starburst International Film Festival

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Guest: Dez Skinn


A genuine titan of publishing, Dez Skinn is the reason we’re here. In 1977, he created STARBURST and went on to be head of Marvel UK, launching Doctor Who Weekly (now Monthly) – the longest-running TV tie-in magazine.

Whether it’s House of Hammer, MAD UK, Warrior, or Comics International, there’s a good chance if you’re of a certain age, you’ll have read Dez’s work. The multi-award-winning Warrior also introduced the ever-popular V for Vendetta.

Dez is an ever-entertaining raconteur who we’re always pleased to welcome home.

Feature Film: Revisiting Melancholie Der Engel

Dir. Magnus Blomdahl, Sweden, 60 mins

In 2009, Marian Dora’s Melancholie Der Engel horrified and fascinated viewers in equal measure. A perennial feature on ‘most disturbing film’ lists, this enigmatic and transgressive film from an infamous and reclusive director has carved out a place in extreme horror folklore. Revisiting Melancholie Der Engel is a unique documentary exploring this singular film, looking at the places, stories and processes behind its production.

Film Gutter says: Anyone familiar with Melancholie Der Engel will know that is is a complex, dense piece of film-making that isn’t instantly easy to unpack – and that’s before we come to the more outlandish, shocking content featured with the movie. As such, Magnus Blomdahl’s Revisiting Melancholie Der Engel is a much-warranted deeper look at one of the most talked about features of all time, and a rare chance to hear more from Marian Dora himself – rarely interviewed and practically never seen in public – about his ideas and working process. It’ll also be a great complement to Melancholie itself, whether it’s a movie you’re already familiar with or not.


Feature Film: American Guinea Pig: Song of Solomon

Dir. Stephen Biro, USA, 85 mins

Following on from the infamous Japanese Guinea Pig movies of the ‘80s, the American Guinea Pig series has brought a new range of exciting extreme horror into the modern era. STARBURST MediaCity Festival is proud to present the UK premiere of the third entry in the series, Song of Solomon, an exorcism movie unlike any that has come before it. With a cast including cult icons Jessica Cameron and Jim Van Bebber, brace yourself for authentic exorcism rituals with 100% practical effects and lashings of gore.

Film Gutter says: The second American Guinea Pig movie, Bloodshock, is a masterclass in modern extreme cinema, and I can’t wait to see what the series has to offer next. If you’re sick and tired of the lame Hollywood takes on the exorcism, Song of Solomon is going to be the perfect antidote. While the series as a whole has never shied away from visceral content – and there’s no exception here – that is always complemented with clever film-making and a great understanding of the horror audience.  It’s a real privilege to be able to present this movie to a UK audience for the first time as well.

Feature Film: REDWOOD


Director: Tom Paton. Starring: Nicholas Brendon, Tatjana Inez Nardone, Jessica-Jane Stafford.

After some bad news back at home, musician Josh and his girlfriend Beth head out to a secluded national park in search of some clarity on the situation they’ll face when they return. But the couple gets more than they bargained for when they ignore the advice of Park Rangers and venture off the trail, coming face to face with The Redwood’s legendary wildlife. REDWOOD brings a fresh spin to a well-worn mythology to create an edge of your seat horror movie that will shred your nerves and have you thinking twice about going camping again.

We screened Tom Paton’s previous film Pandorica at last year’s festival and it’s our great pleasure to have Redwood at the festival prior to its home entertainment release along with exclusive extracts from his upcoming film Black Site. Tom will be joining us on Friday, March 16th.






Guest: Rob Sellers


Rob is an author and writer of several biographies of some of the biggest icons in cinema including Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Sigourney Weaver, and Tom Cruise. His popular book Hellraisers: The Life and Inebriated Times of Burton, Harris, O’Toole, and Reed has been adapted into a graphic novel.

Rob will be discussing The Battle for Bond, based on his controversial book that covers the infamous Ian Fleming plagiarism trail over the production of Thunderball and outcome that resulted in the ‘remake’ Never Say Never Again – well known not to be an official film in the Bond canon.

A fascinating chap, Rob also published books on Lew Grade’s ITC production company and Handmade Films (who made Life of Brian and Withnail and I) and we’re looking forward to hearing from him.

Guest: Brian Gorman

Brian Gorman: ‘ONE MAN BOND: Every Bond Film In 60 Minutes’

Brian Gorman is a Manchester-based writer, artist and performer. His new one-man show, ONE MAN BOND: Every Bond Film In 60 Minutes covers over half a century of the cinematic 007, and every one of the 24 official James Bond movies. From Sean Connery in Dr No through to Daniel Craig in Spectre, Brian will bring to life classic scenes involving Goldfinger, Scaramanga, Blofeld, Max Zorin, Red Grant, M, Q, Moneypenny, and hundreds more.

Brian is a life-long Bond fan, having read all the Ian Fleming novels as a child in the 1970s, and seeing every movie dozens of times. His recent published work includes the graphic novels EVERYMAN: A Celebration of Patrick McGoohan & The Prisoner (adapted from his stage play, and also available as an audio drama on CD), and BORDERLINERS: True Realities (Invisible Six Publishing). His highly-acclaimed stage play, NEW DAWN FADES: A Play About Joy Division and Manchester has toured nationally for the last 4 years, and played to capacity audiences and standing ovations. He is currently drawing a new graphic novel, ANIMUS, written by SM Worsey, and due to be published this autumn.

‘ONE MAN BOND’ is written and performed by Brian Gorman, directed by Ronny Worsey, and produced by Invisible Six Ltd.








Brian Gorman launches 'Everyman' at Portmeirion 2017 Borderliners

Brian Gorman signs books at Portmeirion 2016

Short Film: Hell’s Bells

Hell’s Bells

Director: Luke Jeffery. Starring: Magda Cassidy, Charlie Coldfield, Richard Feltham, Marie Cassidy.

Morris dancing: quirky British pastime or sinister secret society? Hell’s Bells explores the dark underbelly of this ancient folk tradition.

Made with the support of Creative England via the BFI NET.WORK.

Continuing the ‘folk horror’ tradition of the likes of The Wicker Man and The Blood on Satan’s Claw, this quirky short lifts the lid on the evils of one of Britain’s strangest traditions.




Hell's Bells short film

Short Film: FTL


Director: Adam Stern. Starring: Ty Olsson, Aliyah O’Brien, Karin Konoval. 

A lone astronaut testing the first faster-than-light spacecraft travels farther than he imagined possible.

A breathtakingly emotional space ride with dazzling effects and true heart. The second film by Adam Stern, who was nominated for an Emmy for his work on Almost Human and was VFX supervisor on dozens of shows and films with Artifex Studios.




Short Film: The Stay

The Stay

Director: Frazer Lee. Starring: Daniela Finley.

A young woman checks into a secluded holiday cottage and discovers that some vacations stay with you… forever.

A creepy and claustrophobic chiller much in the vein of the classic Tales of the Unexpected series, which draws you in and doesn’t let you go.

the stay poster




Short Film: Bragging Rights!

Bragging Rights!

Director: James Atkins. Starring: Nikolas Salmon, Marcus Massey, Francesca Louise White, Clare Aster.

Three superhero housemates try to out brag each other with their accomplishments.

Much in the fashion of the famous ‘Four Yorkshiremen’ sketch originally performed on At Last the 1948 Show (but made immortal by Monty Python), this is a fun low-key ‘behind the scenes’ look at superheroes.



bragging rights posterBragging Rights! Behind the scenes


The Landing