If it’s ok we would like to share our story with you. Seeing as we hosted our first UK film screenings last month with a nostalgic evening with Back to the Future in Nottingham City Centre with Blend, followed by the magical Beauty and the Beast and new family favourite Moana at Hodsock Abbey. It was a quite a month, we faced British weather for the first time and our audiences delighted with picnics in the grass and enjoying the gorgeous vocals of talented performer Jenny Skuse before we jumped in with Doc and Marty over at Blend. Sharing stories on the big screen in beautiful outdoor locations is something we love that we get to do.
We thought we would take a little time to introduce ourselves and talk about how Big Sky Cinema came into being and our own story. Interestingly we are a branch of a Social Enterprise, and our profits are reinvested to supporting schemes within our social mission and charitable objectives via our parent company Eudaimonia. So every time you see a film with us or hire us you’re doing a good deed too. How great is that?
Big Sky Cinema currently consists of three individuals who bring a vast amount of experience in film and events to every screening and the experience that can we provide. Steve, Iain and Amy all pride themselves on their detailed level of customer service that they provide and are all film lovers – but their taste is hugely different! You can find out more about the team here.
Big Sky Cinema interestingly didn’t exactly begin in England; it was born many, many miles away in Africa – in Meru to be precise. Eudaimonia works with people in Meru to better their lives and provide new opportunities and in the summer of 2014, following three years of research and working on funding grants and launching a Kickstarter campaign where things sadly didn’t quite fall into place, and we were not able to provide what we wanted too. That’s the first time Amy and Iain worked together, as at the time Amy owned Screen 22 Cinema where Iain and team filmed the video segment of the Kickstarter campaign we later launched. It really is all about the people you meet. Fast forward three years later, and Iain and Amy will regularly be found discussing recent film releases, classic special effects and some very obscure films from eras gone by, as they inflate the cinema screen and check the sound levels before the film plays for you.
We intended to create a film showing community which was to screen local work alongside screening mainstream and classic film releases. Our intent and wishes were to provide a cinema with proper sound systems and sophisticated screening equipment, as unlike here in England in Meru and similar places they don’t have access to several purpose-built cinemas per city – it can take up to a day to travel to the nearest Picturehouse, and we wanted to help! As we all know not all plans work out, but if you don’t take a chance, then you will never know what could be.
The project sadly ran into some complications (and then our gear got stuck in customs for eight months!), and due to factors out of our control, it sadly failed. So a decision was made to try something in the UK and nearer home, and that’s what the next few months are set to be. We have found some excellent partnering venues and people to work with, from grand historic houses to inner-city new locations – we will even be popping up Big Sky Cinema on a local football pitch. The beauty of pop-up cinema as a concept, is that we can create a cinema environment pretty much anywhere in the open air for a vast range of audiences and share our love of film.
Something very different that we can offer at both public and private events is freshly prepared and cooked catering. Part of the company is The Super Kitchen which includes our own fantastic food truck, coffee blend and we can even cater food to compliment the genre of your screening – for instance homemade ice-cream alongside Frozen or 50’s based milkshakes and burgers as you kick back to Grease?. No request is too big or small – we want to work with you to put on the best event that you can so please get in touch.
You can find out more about the rest of our film season by following us on Instagram or Facebook or let us know your favourite films over at Twitter – please send us your photos and comments, as we do this all for you and would love to see the memories we have helped create.