Intelligent and inspiring female-focus talent is top of the bill at the Bulgari Hotel, in London’s Knightsbridge, as it debuts its Breakthrough Women Film Series. Running monthly, in the luxurious surroundings of the hotel’s 47-seat cinema room, the first preview screening rolls on February 27; the fourth closes the run on May 30. The series, celebrating women as filmmakers and their female-driven storylines, will be followed by a Q&A session with the films’ directors and/or leading actors.
First in the spotlight is a preview of the hugely anticipated documentary Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist. Due in cinemas on March 23, the film blends archive material, reconstructions and interviews with friends and collaborators to tell the story of Dame Vivienne’s journey from postwar Derbyshire to the catwalks of Paris and Milan, delving into all aspects of her life from her fight to maintain her brand’s integrity to her legacy in a consumerist world; the film’s director, Lorna Tucker, will take part in the Q&A afterwards.
Jeune Femme, winner of the Camera d’Or at Cannes 2017, will be screened on March 26. Marking the debut of French director Léonor Serraille, the film focuses on a young woman (played by Laetitia Dosch) desperate to reinvent herself after a 10-year relationship breaks down. Both Serraille and Dosch will host the Q&A after the film.
On April 25, the critically acclaimed Blame will be screened, starring Chris Messina (Argo, Julie & Julia) as a substitute drama teacher whose taboo relationship with an unstable student (played by Quinn Shephard, also the film’s writer and director) provokes jealousy from a classmate (Nadia Alexander). The 22-year-old Shephard and Alexander, winner of best actress award at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival, will host the Q&A. The final film in the series set for May 30 is yet to be announced.
Film evenings will begin at 6.30pm with champagne and canapés, followed by the screening at 7.15pm. Tickets are available via Eventbrite in exchange for a £7 donation to Bulgari’s chosen charity, Save the Children.