Hackney Picturehose

Underwire Festival at Hackney Picturehouse

Hackney Picturehouse and Hackney Attic are proud to host this year’s Underwire Festival. Underwire is the UK’s only film festival celebrating female filmmaking talent across the crafts. This year’s Underwire Festival will host 56 short films and three feature films by women filmmakers, followed by Underwire’s Awards Night.

Each of the award sponsors shares Underwire’s aim to help nurture the talent that has contributed to the films enjoyed at the festival, and offers generous mentoring, training and memberships as prizes.


Underwire In The Attic Weekend And Day Passes 

Weekend pass: £45/£35 concessions

All-day Saturday pass: £30/£20 concessions

Please visit the Underwire ticket site to purchase passes. Screenings in Screen 4 are charged at the standard cinema ticket price.

Fri 20 Nov 6.30 | Hackney Attic

Opening Night

Join Underwire’s celebration of women on screen who are unpredictable and inspiring; women who cannot be constrained or categorised; women who are as diverse, unusual, outspoken and daring as women really are!

Leading Ladies: Best Actor Award Sponsored By Casting Call Pro 

Four extraordinary actors deliver striking performances and present multi-faceted characters in these compelling films. Dark comedy tussles with more sinister themes and each performance conveys a depth of characterisation that ensures high impact. Possession, cult life, unusual career choices and the complexities of motherhood are examined in films that amuse, horrify and astound.


XX Award: Best Female Representation Award Sponsored By Screen International

Visions of womanhood that you should see everywhere, but won’t see anywhere else: anarchic, driven, surreal and sexual. This outrageously entertaining programme delivers the unexpected, through unconventional stories that put women first. Matthew Stars in Their Eyes Kelly is also seen in an unforgettable new light.

Programme length: 88 mins

Book tickets

Fri 20 Nov 8.45 | Screen 4

The Violators (Cert TBC)

Director: Helen Walsh. UK 2015. TBC mins.

Novelist Helen Walsh’s debut as a screenwriter and director is an unsettling coming-of-age story, featuring a searing performance from Lauren McQueen as Shelly. Manipulation and exploitation hang heavily over Shelly, but she is determined to gain control of her life by any means necessary.

The film will be followed by a Q&A with the film’s writer-director and lead actress.

Book tickets

Sat 21 Nov, 11.00am | Hackney Attic

Dream Drafters

Best Writer Award Sponsored By Euroscript

Identity, family, memory and nostalgia course through stories that are alternately humorous, traumatic, poignant and heart-warming. Martin Freeman and Prunella Scales feature among the actors portraying diverse and engaging characters. These moving films present themes that affect us all.

Programme length: 76 mins

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Sat 21 Nov 1.00 | Hackney Attic

Looking Glass

Best Cinematographer Award Sponsored By Greenkit

From a music video for Damon Albarn to the seedy underworld of Soho, via depictions of repressed memory and insight into alternative states of mind, this category’s lyrical and visually arresting films display an inventiveness and beauty that only film can fully realise.

Programme length: 64 mins

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Sat 21 Nov 3.00 | Hackney Attic

Fresh Blood

Best Under-25 Award Sponsored By BFI Future Film

Thought-provoking subjects are handled with skill and assurance by filmmakers who show potential for a very bright future in the UK film industry. The films look at topics from transgenderism to drug dealing to the life of infamous photographer Terry Richardson, delivering unpredictable and unexpected stories.

Programme length: 70 mins

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Sat 21 Nov 5.00 | Hackney Attic

Aural Pleasure

Sonic Sirens: Best Sound Designer Award Sponsored By Sound Disposition 

Astute sound design enlivens this programme of gripping documentary, animation and drama films. Kate Dickie answers a 999 call, rites of passage are recounted and stories of family relations and resistance to religious homophobia are told.

She Scores: Best Composer Award Sponsored By Musicians’ Union

Atmospheric and inventive scores illuminate each piece in this diverse collection of films, which are by turns delightful, heart-breaking, beautiful and powerful. They feature animation, dance and a moving performance from Olivia Williams.

Programme length: 71 mins

Book tickets

Sat 21 Nov 7.00 |Hackney Attic

In The Cut 

Best Editor Award Sponsored By VET

Talented filmmakers bring us a diverse collection of documentary, animation and narrative films that make Underwire proud to exist. The films take us from a steam room in the Docklands to a magical circus, via New Mexico and an encounter with Ben Whishaw.

Programme length: 85 mins

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Sat 21 Nov 8.45 | Screen 4

Addicted To Sheep (PG) 

Director: Magali Pettier. UK 2015. 86 mins.

Beautifully observed and laugh-out-loud funny, this heartwarming film charts a year in the life of a tenant hill farmer and his family as they try to breed the perfect sheep. Through rain, shine, sleet and snow we see them toil away against the stunning landscapes of north-east England. A treat for the senses, Addicted To Sheep allows us to experience life on a hill farm – without having to get mucked in ourselves.
The film will be followed by a Q&A with the director and the producer.

Book tickets

Sun 22 Nov 3.30 | Hackney Attic

Celluloid Sculptors 

Best Director Award Sponsored By Directors UK

Romance and humour give way to darker territory in an unforgettably powerful programme.

Programme length: 82 mins

Book tickets

Sun 22 Nov 5.30 |Hackney Attic

Ring Masters 

Best Producer Award Sponsored By Women In Film & TV

These extraordinary works are delivered with breathtaking ambition and scope, providing every reason to feel that the future of UK filmmaking is in safe hands. The proof of collaborative brilliance shines in each film, reflecting assured producing skill.

Programme length: 85 mins

Book tickets

Sun 22 Nov 8.00 | Hackney Attic

Awards Night 

Underwire’s Awards Night sponsored By Women In Film & TV 

Underwire is the only short film festival presenting prizes across the crafts. The awards night is an amazing opportunity for creatives working across a whole film crew to meet and congratulate one another on their amazing achievements.

Free entry (ticket required)

Book tickets

 Sun 22 Nov 8.30 | Screen 4

Sense And Sensibility (U)

Director: Ang Lee. USA/UK 1995. 136 mins.
This modern classic was Emma Thompson’s first screenplay. She creates nuanced, compassionate and original depictions of womanhood in all of her screenplays. In celebration of one of the most beloved women working in the UK film industry, we are delighted to present this excellent work.

With introduction by screenwriters about the work of Emma Thompson.



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