The Jersey Film Festival was started in 1994 by Kevin Lewis.
Kevin then ran the cine de France cinema at the lido de France with his wife Isabella and being fond of the American drive-in cinema thought it would be fun to build one in Jersey.
A temporary sight was located at the old Bel Vue go kart track in St Brelade and the temporary cinema began taking shape.
The screen was sixty feet wide by forty two feet wide; we had to inform the airport control tower as the screen appeared on their radar.
After the drive-in finished and the sight was designated for housing kevin decided to scale down the mobile cinema and use it for showing outdoor films and the Jersey Film Festival was born. Showing films at Durrell, the Aero Club hanger, the Royal Square, and finally Howard Davis Park where they have been for many years.
It has always been our policy to have a free film festival with a retiring collection for local charities.
We erect the giant screen on the bandstand and park the projection van on the lawn. We show only family films with many families bringing a picnic and a rug enjoying their favourite films under the stars.
The attendances for the film festival are between one thousand five hundred and three thousand five hundred per night.
We show films such as a good James Bond or adventure film, it is amazing to stand on the stage in front of the screen to introduce the film to have three and a half thousand people looking back at you.
When the film finishes the audience burst into spontaneous applause and on leaving the park everyone puts a few pounds in the bucket.
This year all being well (and subject to funding) as well as the regular sound system we hope to transmit the sound, so people with hearing loss or people much further away from the screen would be able to pick the sound up on headsets or personal stereos.
The Jersey Film Festival runs from August 3rd – 8th Nightly at 8.30pm
“Unlike all the other art forms, film is able to seize and render the passage of time, to stop it, almost to possess it in infinity. I’d say that film is the sculpting of time.”
– Andrei Tarkovsky