Harriet Warman is the newest member of our team. Find out more about her here.
As a child, I was pretty upset when the TV was turned off. They captivated me, those moving images and sounds – a world that looked similar but different to the one I inhabited – and I hated when the TV’s mesmeric grip was cut short.
As an adult, I’ve channelled that fascination into my professional career, which has taken me from a self-initiated Movie Club in Dundee, through film criticism, programming, festival production and now here, to Regional Screen Scotland. The team at RSS shares my passion for film, and the imperative that everyone should be able to have great, big screen experiences, no matter where they live.
I have a very eclectic taste in film. I love everything from US-based Dana Berman Duff’s 16mm, black & white experimental Catalogue films or Andrew Kötting’s pilgrimage works, through to period films like Ang Lee’s Sense and Sensibility and Whit Stillman’s Love & Friendship. I also love classics like His Girl Friday and Rear Window, documentaries like Agnès Varda’s The Gleaners and I, or Sarah Polley’s The Stories We Tell, sci-fi like Aliens, independent (or what you might call ‘art house’) films such as Wong Kar-wai’s In the Mood for Love, Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Tropical Malady or Anna Biller’s The Love Witch, plus I love action/adventure and horror films like X-Men, John Carpenter’s The Thing, Karyn Kusama’s Jennifer’s Body and Bong Joon-ho’s The Host.
That’s a lot of so-called genres to appreciate, which is why I sometimes find it hard to navigate the often-restricting world of genre categorisation. It’d be easier just to say I love all cinema – but I’m sure you agree, that wouldn’t really get my passion across.
My diverse taste in films has meant I’ve been able to apply my passion and skills to a lot of different film festivals. I worked for five editions of the Edinburgh International Film Festival in the programme team, for Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, for AV Festival in Newcastle, and most recently as Producer of Alchemy Film & Moving Image Festival in the Scottish Borders. In between all that in the last ten years, I’ve written about film for outlets such as Sight & Sound, Little White Lies and CineVue, and travelled to other festivals such as International Film Festival Rotterdam, Berlin Film Festival and Bratislava International Film Festival.
What connects all this, no matter if the film is experimental, dramatic or comedic, is the magical shared experience of the audience, it’s what motivates me to keep screening films for people, and advocating to remove any barriers individuals might have to be part of that experience. I’m thrilled to work for the organisation that operates the amazing service that is the Screen Machine and as Partnerships Coordinator, I’ll be working on projects that promote the benefits of local cinema provision, and that seek to develop a diverse screen culture across Scotland.