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The 10th annual Southend-on-Sea Film Festival returns this week

22 May The 10th annual Southend-on-Sea Film Festival returns this week

The 10th annual Southend-on-Sea Film Festival will open with one of the most powerful and daringly inventive British films ever made, 50 years on.

Famous for its depiction of a violent insurrection at a boys’ public school, if…. echoed the political and social unrest in France, embodied by the student riots in Paris and revolutionary events in other countries, such as China, Cuba and Vietnam. Such was its impact, that the film was X-rated on its release, aided all the more so by Malcolm McDowell’s debut performance as the film’s lead character, Mick.

For the festival’s opening gala night, there will be an official 50th anniversary screening of if…. with cast members David Wood, Brian Pettifer and Richard Everett, plus the production team, joining festival-goers for a unique evening. The film also launched the career of Robin Askwith, who became a household name in the 1970’s with his phenomenally successful – and saucy – Confessions films, and he will also attend the Gala Night.

Other famous faces attending the Gala Night include Festival Patron and ‘Allo ‘Allo star Vicki Michelle, Perry Benson (Benidorm), Karl Howman (Eastenders), actor/producer/director Ray Burdis and actor Tony Denham.