Industry programme announced for BFI Flare

The 37th BFI Flare: London LGBTQIA+ Film Festival is pleased to announce its 2023 Industry Programme, offering topical industry-focused discussions with BFI Flare guests from across the globe plus P&I screenings, access to the BFI Flare digital viewing platform and industry networking events. 
The Industry Programme will include events on Queer filmmaking in Nigeria, a spotlight on the South Korean films screening at BFI Flare and the LGBTQIA+ creatives involved, a selection of whom we will be hosting in delegations from both countries. 
There will be opportunities for industry delegates to participate in BFI Doc Society 1:2:1 sessions to discuss the new BFI National Lottery Funds available for shorts and feature documentary projects. 
Furthermore, BFI Flare will continue to host The Makers, its popular series of interviews with filmmakers whose work is screening at BFI Flare 2023, offering audiences the opportunity to learn more about the careers of the filmmakers from the programme.
A full list of the Industry Programme events are as follows (Events are open to Industry and Filmmaker delegates of the Festival only, unless otherwise specified):
The Makers: The Stroll
Thu 16 Mar. 14.00 -15.15
BFI Southbank, The Studio

BFI Flare 2023’s Opening Night Co-Directors, Kristen Lovell and Zackary Drucker (TransparentFraming Agnes), discuss the making of the Sundance Award winning film The Stroll, a deeply personal documentary centred on the trans sex workers of colour in New York’s meatpacking district in the 80’s & 90’s.
Lovell herself was a prominent figure in the community that made the New York street their home. In the film, she invites her sisters to connect and recall their experiences. Through interviews, archival footage, animation, and footage shot on the same streets in the present day; we are invited into the world of these women. 
The Makers: Carter Smith
Mon 20 Mar 14.00 – 15.15
BFI Southbank, The Studio

Carter Smith began his career in fashion photography, going on to shoot some of the world’s most famous faces for the likes of W, Vogue, i-D, and GQ. He has also shot commercials for clients such as Lancome and Tommy Hilfiger. His 2006 debut short as writer and director, Bugcrush, won the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance and caught the attention of Steven Spielberg, landing him in the director’s chair on Hollywood horror The Ruins, hailed by Stephen King as one of his favourite movies of 2008. Smith’s subsequent features have both centred queer characters, Jamie Marks is Dead which premiered at Sundance in 2014 and Midnight Kiss, an episode from the Blumhouse slasher anthology series Into The Dark, which premiered on Hulu. 
Launching at BFI Flare, his latest feature as writer-director, Swallowed, is another queer body horror thriller, a wickedly subversive and playfully allegorical tale of bodily infection, invasion and infestation which sees two best friends fighting to survive a nightmarish ordeal after a drug deal goes awry.
The Makers: Shamim Sarif
Fri 24 Mar. 14.00 – 15.15
BFI Southbank, The Studio

Writer and director Shamim Sarif is an award-winning novelist, screenwriter, feature film director, and director for premium series and a long-time advocate for the rights of women and the LGBTQ+ community.
As well as the latest series of psychological thriller YOU, for Netflix/Warner, her other series directing credits include SkyMed (Paramount+), Moonshine (eOne) and Diggstown (CBC/Fox)
Her features films include, I Can’t Think Straight (London Gay & Lesbian Film Festival 2009), a cross-cultural romance between a Palestinian Christian girl and an Anglo-Indian Muslim girl, The World Unseen, the story of two women who engage in a dangerous relationship during South Africa’s apartheid, Cold War espionage drama, Despite the Falling Snow, starring Rebecca Ferguson and Charles Dance and documentary The House of Tomorrow about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, that offers ideas inspired by women of the region.
Shamim’s latest feature film as a writer/director and co-producer, Polarized receives its world premiere at BFI Flare 2023, a visually arresting tale of two woman who must navigate the barriers of race, religion and class that have kept them apart as they develop an unavoidable attraction to each other.

A special programme of talks and panels focusing on LGBTQIA+ filmmaking, open to all accredited Industry and Filmmaker Delegates.
Filmmaker 1:2:1 Sessions with BFI Doc Society as part of BFI Network
Delegates will have the opportunity to book a 15 min 1:2:1 session with BFI Doc Society representatives
Thu 16 Mar. 14.00 -16.00,
BFI Southbank, The Blue Room

Whether you’re a new or emerging filmmaker working on a doc short or your first feature, or you’re simply a doc-curious creative, come and talk to BFI Doc Society representatives about BFI National Lottery Funds available for shorts and feature documentaries. Plus other training, commissioning and support available to get your creative doc ideas rolling! We look forward to hearing about your projects and to connect with more LGBTQIA+ stories emerging from across the UK.
Doc Society will continue to serve independent documentary filmmaking and filmmakers as the BFI’s UK-wide delegate partner from April 2023.
Spotlight on South Korea
Date / Time TBC 
BFI Southbank, The Blue Room

Since the South Korean LGBT rights movement emerged in the 1990s, film portrayals of queer characters and non-heterosexual relationships have steadily increased. This year’s BFI Flare  showcases four features (XX+XYLife UnrehearsedThe Dream Songs and PEAFOWL) and a short (Butch Up!) from South Korea.
In this event we shine a spotlight on some of the South Korean filmmakers attending the Festival to discuss their films, the history of LGBTQIA+ cinema in South Korea and their experiences of making queer films in the East Asian country.
For Tomorrow: Queer Filmmaking in Nigeria 
Mon 20 Mar 16.00 – 17.15
BFI Southbank, NFT 2
What is it like to create queer cinematic stories in environments that are hostile towards queer people, and what stories are borne from those complex realities?
How do we celebrate and support filmmakers that challenge perceptions? And how do we create pipelines for those stories to be heard internationally?
Film is one of the most accessible art forms in post-digital world and for those of us that enjoy the privileges of living in the Global North, in this event we will be joined by a delegation of filmmakers creating queer content in Nigeria today, to explore the barriers, the community and the tenacity required to succeed outside of the structures of Nollywood. This is a celebration of queer filmmaking in the Global South.
Press & Industry Screenings
We are delighted to offer a schedule of Press & Industry Screenings throughout the Festival for the following titles: The StrollPeafowlThe ChambermaidLie With MeWho I Am Not and Drifter. Confirmed P&I schedule to follow. For further details about Press and Industry accreditation and the full programme, please go to:  
BFI Flare Industry Events programmed by Darren Jones.