Nostalgia: Long-time star of the silver screen

THE eyes of the film world will fall on Edinburgh later this year when the Capital hosts what will be one of the biggest premieres in the history of the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

The announcement earlier this week that Disney-Pixar had chosen the festival’s closing gala for the European premiere of its latest animated film, Brave, provided a much-needed shot in the arm to the event, with stars such as Kelly Macdonald and Billy Connolly expected to walk the red carpet.

Glittering stars and special memories are nothing new, although a lot has changed since 1973, when festival director Lynda Myles would personally check over reels of film before screenings through an old Monarc film projector.

The Capital’s celebration of cinema has always attracted the biggest names though – in 1955, film producer Betty Box was seen at the Filmhouse with director Ralph Thomas and actor Dirk Bogarde reading the programme for that year’s festival.

In 1953, the event bagged one of the biggest of them all, when legendary director Orson Welles strode through the doors of the Cameo cinema to deliver a lecture on the finances of the film industry.

In 1958, it was a group of French film stars who brought some international glamour to the event, while actor Ray Brooks appeared at the festival in 1965.

Back in the 1970s, it was the Cameo, a classical picture palace, which provided the flagship venue for the festival.

It seems only fitting that another throwback to classical glamour, the Festival Theatre, will be used for this latest instalment in the film festival’s story.