Fringe! The London DIY Gay Film Fest

Budget cuts to the BFI Gay & Lesbian film festival have inspired a new event which takes place over four days starting tonight (April 7).

The Fringe! The London DIY Gay Film Fest aims to keep the party going after this year’s BFI festival was reduced from 11 days to a week.

There will be a long weekend of film screenings, parties, talks and performance, held from the April 7 to 10 at various locations around east London including Dalston and Shoreditch.

Anna Leach, the festival’s publicist, said: “We were gutted to hear that the BFI festival had been cut in half and wanted to keep the spirit alive despite the cuts.

“After a random Facebook conversation we decided to pull together this fun weekend of classic gay celluloid romps, new queer films and great social events.”

It starts with a launch party tonight (April 7) at Dalston Superstore, 117 Kingsland High Street; starting at 8pm.

There will be a downstairs screening of kitsch German vampire flick Vampiros Lesbos, with synthpoppers Filthy Dukes as DJs for the upstairs party.

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There will even be ushers and usherettes tattooing willing party-goers.

Organised in only eight weeks by a dedicated team of volunteers, the programme will feature “the sublime and the ridiculous” of classic gay cinema and provide a platform for new film-makers, set in different venues within walking distance of each other.

There will be exclusive screenings of ironic camp classic Showgirls (Friday), a special pre-release of remastered cult film Taxi Zum Klo (Saturday) and new eye-opening documentary Donor Unknown (Sunday).

Alex Karotsch, the festival’s producer, explained: “We’ll be showing crowd-pleasing classics along with new stuff, talks and performance.

“I can guarantee a great weekend of cheap film-based fun for London gays and their admirers.”