30 Paddingtons and stars of Paddington 2 open Into Film Festival 2017

World’s biggest youth film festival opens in cinemas across the UK, 3000 free screenings and events, 8th-24th November

Paddington Bear, actor and writer Simon Farnaby, young stars Madelaine Harris and Samuel Joslin, and Agatha Christie’s great grandson have joined thousands of young people to mark the start of the Into Film Festival – the world’s largest youth film festival – which opens today in cinemas throughout the UK.

The Festival kicked off with three simultaneous launch events in the capital at Cineworld Leicester Square – 30 children dressed as Paddington alongside an exclusive Pupil Premiere of Paddington 2 - Odeon Covent Garden and the Ritzy Brixton, as well as free screenings and events in towns and cities including Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Belfast, Falkirk and the iconic Penarth Pier Pavilion Cinema in Wales.

Now in its fifth year, the Into Film Festival runs to November 24th with 3000 FREE screenings and events for five to 19 year-olds in 600 venues all over the UK. 500,000 young people and their educators are expected to attend this year’s Festival, which uses the big screen experience to bring learning to life and encourage a life-long passion for cinema. Supporters include actors Sir Kenneth Branagh, Rosamund Pike, Michael Sheen and Carey Mulligan.

Programme highlights include:

The Into Film Festival is hosted by education charity Into Film as part of an on-going initiative to put film at the heart of young people’s learning and personal development, and made possible by support from the BFI, Cinema First, a wide collaboration with UK cinema industry partners and delivery partners National Schools Partnership.

The Into Film Festival runs to 24th November. All events and screenings are free, some spaces are still available. For programme information, to book tickets and download resources visit www.intofilm.org/festival

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