The initiative was founded by Petra Puchelova and Vanessa Sammut. “We wanted to do something different with films, and get more people to appreciate ones that aren’t necessarily commonly known,” says Petra. “We didn’t want to stop there however. We wanted to go beyond the story told in the film to highlight social aspects, tap into people’s emotional understanding and inspire change, hence the name!”
Another uniqueness of the initiative is the locations where these films are shown. WE ARE Beyond Cinema look for spaces that are as far away from the normal cinema building and as close as possible to the cosy feel of watching films at home with friends. “We are always on the lookout for special venues, generally ones with a ‘lived-in’ feel. We’ve so far screened in people’s front rooms, their gardens and other community spaces. Our hosts are people who love film and are really open to meeting new people. They offer up the space and we bring the cinema and the crowd to them” says Vanessa. “The whole point is to bring London communities closer together and to start an interesting dialogue”.