Okay, that's the greatest pun in the world.
The guys at top of the Edinburgh International Film Festival have announced that from next year onwards the festival will take place in June and not August, as it has done for the past 60 years. This means that it will no longer coincide with the International Festival, the Fringe, the Book Festival, the Internet Festival, the Jazz Festival and a whole host of other festivals and celebrations.
I've been going to Edinburgh in August for the past 6 years, so when I heard that I won't be able to enjoy the EIFF along with everything else I was pretty annoyed. However, then I read about why the change was made and I'm really in support of it now.
Having to compete with all the other events in Edinburgh at the same time must be hard, as there is such a gigantic amount on offer. This means that often the EIFF have to utilise red carpet glitz and big names excessively in order to draw in a crowd - in fact, I thought that this was a major flaw in last year's disappointing 60th celebrations. An emphasis was placed on marketing and image, without the quality to support it.
Changing the date to June, though, could change all that. The EIFF would no longer be part of the general 'Edinburgh festival', but it would be able to establish its own identity. Without the competition, the organisers could give the festival a much stronger presence of independent and homegrown cinema, which supports local or unestablished filmmakers and showcases underground work. Considering that the EIFF is the longest-running film festival in the entire world, this is very, very cool.
I can understand why some people don't agree with the change; it's not convenient, and it will lessen the legendary August crowds, but it's a decision taken by the EIFF so that they can become more independent, so there's no need to consider the other festivals.
Anyway, I'm off to Edinburgh today so I'll let you know in a week or so how amazing/awful/both it is.