First Films Announced for Glasgow Film Festival 2023

The news that the Centre for Moving Image had gone into administration as of October 2022 meant the immediate closure of the Edinburgh Film Festival, as well as several independent cinemas. It is a huge blow to the Scottish arts and culture scene. It perhaps makes next year’s Glasgow Film Festival an even more precious experience to cherish.

We are delighted that, not only is the festival returning between March 1 and 12 2023, but they have just announced some of the films that will be gracing next year’s line up.

2023’s programme will include Looking for America: The Films of Lee Grant, a celebration of the documentary work of this extraordinary actor/director. Grant’s inspirational career began with her Oscar-nominated film debut in Detective Story (1951) before being halted by the anti-Communist witch-hunts of the 1950s. She was blacklisted for 12 years, returning to star in a string of iconic films including In the Heat of the NightValley of the Dolls, The Landlord and Shampoo, for which she won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.

Lee Grant GFF23In the 1980s, Grant began directing documentaries that were way ahead of their time. She brought curiosity and compassion to sharply observed accounts of social issues, the inequalities facing women and the state of America during Ronald Reagan’s Presidency. Down And Out In America won the Oscar for Best Documentary and Grant was also the first female director to win the Directors Guild Of America Award.

GFF23 will screen five of her documentaries: BatteredDown and Out in AmericaWhat Sex Am I?When Women Kill and The Willmar 8.

A new generation of Spanish filmmakers have been making waves around the world and the Festival celebrates that vitality with its 2023 Country Focus: Viva el cine español! which is also announced today. A collection of premieres provides a window into a modern Spain dealing with the legacy of the Franco years, caught between urban living and a hankering for a return to the land, and still confronting eternal questions of love, family and loss.

The titles screening include the heart-breaking social drama On The Fringe with Penélope Cruz and Luis Tosar, gripping true-life tale Prison 77 and Lullaby, a film championed by Pedro Almodóvar as ‘undoubtedly the best debut in Spanish cinema for years’.

Roman Holiday - GFF23Also returning next year is GFF’s popular Retrospective strand, which screens 10 free films during the festival. In the Driving Seat showcases films where women take charge of their lives, setting off into the unknown seeking adventure, freedom and self-discovery. The films selected span more than eight decades and range from Claudette Colbert as a runaway heiress in It Happened One Night and Holly Hunter’s intrepid Scotswoman in The Piano to Audrey Hepburn’s incognito princess in Roman Holiday and Faye Dunaway’s Depression-era bank robber in Bonnie And Clyde.

All of the team here at Moviescramble cannot wait – please support your local independent film festival and cinemas by coming along.

The full GFF programme will be announced in January, with tickets going on sale later that month. Visit for more information. 


Mary Munoz
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