Following submissions from over 300 filmmakers from across the globe, this year’s selection represents a wide-range of outdoor sports with dedicated sessions in climbing, running, biking, bike-packing and mountain sports. As a headliner of The Outdoor City Weekender, over a single weekend visitors to Sheffield will be able to combine watching ShAFF’s programme of high octane, enquiring and thought-provoking films with a unique showcase of live events (the Climbing Works International Festival, Howard Street Dual and Magnificent Seven) featuring some of the world’s top athletes. With plenty to inspire and a wealth of outdoor activity providers located across the city region, Sheffield is the perfect destination to get inspired, get active and explore city life.
Photo -:Band of Birds: ShAFF's mobile cinema
Festival Director Matt Heason says: “Now in it’s 13th year, ShAFF’s enduring appeal is rooted in the strong spirit of adventure and love of the outdoors that the people of Sheffield share. Every year the festival provides an opportunity for this community to come together to watch, discuss and get psyched by the latest exploits of outdoor athletes and adventure seekers as they travel to stunning and unexpected locations around the world. Our themed sessions are also a great way in for anyone looking to explore this category of film for the first time.”
Kicking off proceedings on Friday 9th March is festival partner, the British Mountaineering Council, with the public launch of their new Mend Our Mountains appeal. Mend Our Mountains aims to raise £1 million for a range of vital path repair projects within Britain’s entire family of 15 National Parks, including the Peak District National Park. British broadcaster, anthropologist and BMC ambassador Mary Ann-Ochota and British mountaineer Alan Hinkes OBE will introduce the reasons behind the appeal. The first of the ShAFF film programme sessions will follow, with a screening of films celebrating mountains across the world.
Alex Messenger, Head of Communications at the BMC, says: “The BMC fights for the rights and protects the freedoms of climbers, hill walkers and mountaineers. With over 85,500 members, we’re stronger than ever before, and to celebrate our growing membership we’re very proud to return as the presenting sponsor of ShAFF 2018. The ShAFF programme will inspire everyone, from boulderers to mountaineers, and all our members will get 15% off tickets too.”
Waving the flag for local filmmakers in this year’s programme are three Sheffield Hallam University graduates: Jake Thompson and Thomas Johnstone, with their film ‘Into the Black’, featuring local mountain bike rider Dave Camus as he descends through a flood lit Grenoside Woods with an eerily stripped back soundtrack that accentuates the noises of the environment and mechanics of the bike. Dora Damian has also taken inspiration from the cities nightscape and captured highliner Sarah Rixham (who took to the skies to open ShAFF’s 2016 festival) as she elegantly walks the line high above the urban waterways.
Continuing ShAFF’s commitment to promoting female leads and filmmakers, ShAFF will once again screen the winning film from BMC TV Women in Adventure competition, as well as ensuring women are fairly and positively represented in films selected as part of the wider festival programme.
As part of a UK wide tour, The Cycling Podcast presented by journalists Richard Moore, Lionel Birnie and Daniel Friebe wheels into Sheffield for an exciting Saturday night live edition. Go behind the scenes of the Classics and the three Grand Tours, the Giro d'Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España and expect to hear stories and anecdotes from the major races and tales about the star riders as the podcast team looks back on 2017 and ahead to the 2018 season.
Environmental damage is a hot topic and one that has long been a focus for outdoor filmmakers. This year is no exception with the ShAFF programme featuring adventure documentaries A Plastic Ocean and The Ocean Rider that highlight the extent of our world’s polluted oceans.
ShAFF once again offers an all-action cinematic experience for the whole family with family friendly certified screenings housed in the 100 seater travelling cinema which will be located outside Sheffield’s central train station. Look out for the Young Adventurer and Adventure Bites sessions through Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March. At the Workstation, free family-friendly activities including climbing, slacklining and caving will be provided by the Youth Hostel Association (YHA) will be held over the weekend.
HAVE YOUR SAY
Visitors to ShAFF will be able to rate the films they have seen using Boom Beam to help select the ShAFF People’s Choice Award, sponsored by Street Food Chef. With the aim of cultivating greater festival engagement between all those attending, the Boom Beam web app offers audiences the opportunity to give feedback, as well as providing recommendations of what to watch.
Look out for future announcements about the ShAFF Fringe programme which will include, among other free events an art exhibition featuring the work of Katherine Rhodes, Joe Mallia and Tessa Lyons celebrating the outdoors and nature.
The full ShAFF 2018 programme can be viewed via the ShAFF website. Tickets will go on sale on Friday 26th January. Can’t wait or want a taste of what to expect? Join us for our Best of ShAFF 2017 screening on Tuesday 30th January or if you can’t make the weekend we will host an early preview of the Best of ShAFF 2018 on Thursday 8th March.