10 things to see and do at the Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2018

Image: Geoff, directed by Michael Rouse & Will Kenning, 2017, United Kingdom

York’s short film festival is back.

ASSF 2018
  • Nov 7-11
  • 15 York locations
  • Day pass: £16; unlimited pass £48
  • Tickets

With more than 300 films and 100 events across 15 venues, the Aesthetica Short Film Festival offers movies for every taste.

And the BAFTA-qualifying festival even includes feature films for the first time.

With so much choice, what should you look out for? Here’s ten must-sees to get you started…

1. The Screen School VR Lab

In partnership with London College of Communication, ASFF launches a strand dedicated to virtual reality. Try out one of the lab’s daily screenings and immersive experiences in York Theatre Royal’s Keregan Room, with award-winning films distributed by Canal+ and Arte.

2. Masterclasses

Hear from industry leaders. With insider knowledge from behind the scenes, household names such as Film4, i-D, Vice and BBC are in attendance, as well as prolific directors such as Alice Lowe (Sightseers) and Mark Cousins (The Eyes of Orson Wells).

3. Showcase screenings

Presented by leading schools and universities from across the country, discover the next generation of talent. Institutions represented at 2018 include the London Film School, Falmouth University, London College of Fashion, Manchester School of Art, and the London College of Communication.

4. Guest programmes

Guest programmes return with leading arts and organisations boasting powerful short film selections guaranteed to challenge your perceptions. Topics for 2018 include Syrian Stories: Female Voices, LGBTQ+ Shorts: Defining Gay Cinema and 100 Years On: Representations of the Great War.

5. Director’s pick: Opening night repeat screening

Enjoy this programme of highlights hand-picked by ASFF’s festival director, Cherie Federico. With films from all genres, including comedy, documentary and drama, this opening night taster will prove a treat for first-timers and established film fans alike.

6. The Moment Brain Controlled Film

ASFF presents The Moment, an interactive film powered by a brain computer interface. In a converted caravan pitched outside Yorkshire Museum, the project uses an interface that collects data from the viewer and turns it into a story from 18 billion possible stories.

7. Morning coffee & panel discussions

For the daily morning coffee & panel discussions, ASFF hosts Q&As with this year’s official selection filmmakers in the City Screen Basement. Topics including Documentary Filmmaking: Finding The Right Angle and From Script to Screen: Developing A Must-See Story.

8. Friday Night Party

Head to the Latin Quarter and attend ASFF’s legendary Friday Night Party. Here is your chance to meet fellow festival-goers, filmmakers and staff from the Aesthetica team. Strike up new connections and celebrate into the weekend ahead.

9. Meet The Filmmakers

On Saturday night, head to Everyman Cinema for a chance to speak with the filmmakers bringing outstanding short and feature films to this year’s ASFF. In this intimate, informal setting, film fans and creatives can share a drink and talk about the films in competition with those behind the lens.

10. Over 300 film screenings

Discover the best new cinema handpicked by our dedicated festival team. From laugh out loud comedy to affecting dramas, ASFF presents a diverse array of shorts and feature-length films that tease you out of the everyday and transport to you to exciting new worlds.