IMPACT SCREENINGS

Hostile is travelling across the country as part of our Impact Campaign. We are particularly looking to screen the film in underrepresented communities that have an interest in watching the documentary, or who would like to use the film as an educational tool.

Please get in touch at info@galeforcefilms.co.uk if you would like to arrange an impact screening at your organisation.

Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow – September 2022

On Saturday, September 24th, Hostile had its second screening at the Take One Film Festival.

This screening took place at the Glasgow Centre for Contemporary Arts. It was another full screening with lots of people in the audience with a lived experience of the asylum system, which made for some really powerful reflections afterwards

Once again tickets were offered on a sliding scale basis so everyone who wanted to come could do so regardless of their ability to pay.

Daisy Crooke who helped to organise the screening passed around reflection cards, and audience members had this to say:

“Such a powerful and moving film – thank you so much. Wish it could be seen by more people. Discussion was amazing and empowering, too.” 

“It was very moving and well put together” 

“I could connect with the characters so much that I felt how difficult it is just to survive as a refugee / immigrant. Much power to all.”

“It’s extremely important for people to see the harsh realities of the lives of marginalised communities and I’m grateful that TOA made it so inclusive for everyone to join.”

“As an immigrant, I guess it made me more aware of what I’m up against, but the follow-up discussion also touched on what help is available. It was perfect – thank you!”

The final two impact screenings with Take One Action in Scotland will take place in October.

Primrose Hill Community Association, London – September 2022

On Tuesday, September 20th, Hostile screened for local residents at the Primrose Hill Community Association in London. It was shown as part of a regular slot reserved for discussions on global issues and the environment.

The screening took place in front of a mixed audience of different ages and diverse backgrounds, including students. Those who attended also spoke of their direct experiences as migrants. The Q&A was hosted by writer and campaigner Andrew Feinstein.

The Primrose Hill Community Association (PHCA) was formed in 1978, taking control of the Community Centre in Hopkinson’s Place from 1980. They run events, activities, classes and workshops, and rely entirely on locally raised funding through activities, events and bookings and the support they receive from volunteers, local businesses and individuals.

Tim Kirkpatrick, who helped to organise the event, had this to say:

‘‘Hostile’ is an intense and disturbing review of some of the injustices meted out to migrant populations by government policies in the UK in recent and longer term history. It is both moving and informative, bringing a human face to the issue by showing the cost to individuals and their families and communities. At the same time, it shows how community involvement and mass action by impassioned individuals has brought change in the past, and can do so in the future, and in this context it is an uplifting and inspiring view. The screening was followed by an engaging Q&A, where we heard more about the background to the film and its personal origins, as well as audience discussion of the underlying racial prejudice and financial motivations that drive policy and its execution’.

This screening was the first to benefit from Hostile’s Impact Screening tour funded by the UK arm of the Ben & Jerry’s Foundation. And all proceeds from suggested donations went back to the community centre.

Take One Action Film Festival, Edinburgh – September 2022

On Sunday, September 19th, Hostile screened at the Take One Film Festival as part of its 2022 Festival lineup.

The Take One Film Festival is an Edinburgh-based, independent charity founded by film lovers, cultural activists and globally-concerned citizens who believe that shared cinematic experience can catalyse lasting change.

The film was made available to the public and tickets were offered on a sliding scale basis so everyone who wanted to come could do so regardless of their ability to pay.

Following the event, Daisy Crooke who helped to organise the screening passed around reflection cards, and audience members had this to say:

“Very moving and thought-provoking film. As someone who is new to the country this film gave me a lot of important context and was put together in a very powerful way. As both a person of colour and a policy professional (and descendant of immigrants to Canada) this film gave me a lot to think about.”

“I felt really emotional watching this film and I think it’s quite easy to feel exhausted and just so angry, but hopefully that emotion can be channelled into action – there’s so much to do.”

“Very moving – I never knew so much of this. So glad I came along.”

“Thanks for sharing this really important film. Thanks also for providing such a supportive and thoughtful space for sharings and reflections.”

This was a particularly important opportunity for the public to engage in the stories told in Hostile and to think about how they can engage in collective healing in response to the Hostile Environment.

This is the first of four impact screenings across Scotland partnering with Take One Action between September and October.

Westminster University, London – September 2022

On Thursday, September 8th, Hostile screened to an audience of students at Westminster University. 

Sonita was joined in a post-screening discussion with Saskia Huc-Hepher from the French Studies department at the University of Westminster, whose research focuses on questions of identity, belonging and homemaking among London’s French diaspora in on-land and on-line contexts.

The film was well received by the students in attendance, and the Q&A turned into a lively debate about class, race, diversity, politics and politicians from diverse background who enact racist legislation. 

The topics centered around Sonita’s reasons for making the film, the reasons for choosing the film’s title and the complicity of universities in the hostile environment. 

Sonita also discussed her role in campaigning and activism, while the students asked questions relating to the previous Home Secretary, classism and her plans for making films in the future.

Following the event, Saskia said: Despite coinciding with heavy rain and the passing away of Queen Elizabeth II, the screening of Hostile at the University of Westminster managed to pull a large crowd of students, members of the public and Migration academics from Italy, Spain and Tunisia. Questions from the audience bore witness to the affective potency of the film, its transnational reach and timeliness. This is a documentary on a pressing issue affecting a diverse range of people whose everyday struggles and positive contributions are usually kept out of the public gaze. It’s a film that needs to be seen as widely as possible.”

The event was part of the London Summer School sponsored by the Erasmus Plus Project “MIGRANTS”

WOMAD Festival, Wiltshire – July 2022

On Saturday, July 30th, Hostile screened at the WOMAD festival. 

WOMAD’s goal is to celebrate the world’s many forms of music, arts and dance. As a result, the film was received by a diverse and inclusive crowd that was keen to discuss how they could screen the film in their local communities. 

The special event was introduced by Kate Hutchinson and Nitin Sawhney who introduced the film with director Sonita Gale in the run up to the screening.

Illustrator James Nunn hosted the fascinating discussion that took place afterwards. James and Sonita were able to discuss the impact of the Hostile Environment on contemporary legislation, and the importance of educating the public about the history of these policies and how they work.

Hostile was part of a line up that included a diverse group of artists, coming from Mali to Ukraine, Afghanistan to Taiwan, and far beyond.

National Maritime Museum, Greenwich – June 2022

On June 25th Hostile screened at the National Maritime Museum as part of the Royal Museum of Greenwich’s weeklong celebration during Refugee Week, a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary. 

The film screened at the Voyager’s Gallery and was free to the public. The theme of Refugee Week this year is ‘healing’ and the National Maritime Museum incorporated the screening of Hostile in their exploration of this theme. The need for healing is evident throughout Hostile, as the film seeks to demonstrate how damaging living in a hostile environment can be for migrants in the UK.

Following the event, Charlotte Paddock from Royal Museums Greenwich who helped to organise the screening had this to say:

“It was a privilege to be able to screen a Hostile, a deeply powerful, moving and necessary documentary that speaks to the impact of Britain’s maritime history.”

This was a particularly important opportunity for the public to engage in the stories told in Hostile and to think about how they can engage in collective healing in response to the Hostile Environment.

Glastonbury Festival, Somerset – June 2022

On June 24th, Hostile screened to an intimate audience at the Glastonbury Festival, marking one of the highlights of the film’s Refugee Week screenings.

Cineramageddon hosted a day of films which were around the topic of the hostile environment.

The film was followed by a panel discussion hosted by film critic Mark Kermode, with writer/director Sonita Gale and the former executive director of Greenpeace John Sauven.

They discussed topics such as the hostile environment and the different forms it takes, including environmental and ecological ones. And they discussed issues raised in Hostile, such as the No Recourse to Public Funds policy and its impact.

The panel also looked to the future, talking about social mobilisation, and the positive trend we are seeing as grassroots organisations & political parties come together to collectively fight against the hostile environment .

Reading Biscuit Factory, Reading – June 2022

On June 23rd, Hostile screened at the Reading Biscuit factory as it continued its run of Refugee Week screenings.

The film was followed by a panel led by Nick Harborne, CEO at Reading Refugee Support Group (RRSG).

Following the event, the RRSG’s Jonjo Warrick, who helped to organise the event, had this to say about the film:

‘Hostile is an incredibly potent documentary that couldn’t be more relevant right now. The film deeply affected everyone in the audience and led to a very passionate and inspiring discussion.’

Another Europe Is Possible – June 2022

On June 12th, Another Europe is Possible hosted a virtual screening of Hostile for its members, which was followed by an online discussion about the film on June 16th with Zoe Gardner, Policy & Advocacy Manager at Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants. The event was hosted by Alena Ivanova.

Another Europe is Possible is a civil society organisation based in the United Kingdom which was founded in February 2016 to campaign for the ‘Remain’ option during the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, while also advocating for internal reform of the EU. They now campaign to build a Europe that has social and environmental justice at its heart, and which is a welcome place for migrants.

The discussion revolved around director Sonita Gale’s connection to the story as a filmmaker, why this film is so important right now, the impact it is having and the outcomes it has created. Following the screening, the organisation had this to say about the event:

Another Europe is proud to have provided our members with the chance to watch this important documentary. No amount of campaign materials could compare with the power of real stories told by real people who are our friends, neighbours and loved ones, and who continue to suffer the cruelties of the UK immigration system. 

The film does a brilliant job of boiling down complex policies into fundamental narratives about care, compassion and what makes us human. Our members learned more about the system but more importantly reflected on its damaging presence all around us. The Q&A with Sonita was a wonderful opportunity to build a narrative of hope and resistance around the stories of the film and motivated us, our supporters and members to be ever more vocal in our fight against the hostile environment. We thank Sonita and her team for bringing her art to us.

Covington, City of London – June 2022

On Thursday 9th June, Hostile kick-started its tour of law firms across the country with a screening and Q&A at the London office of Covington & Burling LLP, a global law firm with a strong commitment to pro bono and public service. The film screening was hosted by Covington partner, Brandon Thompson, in partnership with NOTICED, the inter-firm diversity network, with a great attendance by lawyers and professionals from across the firm and the network. The Q&A was led by Sonita Gale, the film’s director and producer, with supporting commentary from Charlotte Fisher, the film’s executive producer, and Annie Cooper, the national coordinator of Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) UK, a charity that Covington supports with pro bono work, protecting undocumented children in the UK.

“We are proud to have partnered with Hostile to screen this film. Given the current controversy surrounding the UK Government’s Rwanda deportations policy, this is a timely and important film which helps raise public awareness of policies and practices implemented by the UK Government designed to create what the government itself has termed a “hostile environment”. The film’s unflinching narrative has helped open space for an important public discussion about how to handle sensitive issues such as immigration policies. Since hosting the screening, we have had a high level of interest from people wanting to support the firm’s work with KIND UK, to help children negatively impacted by these types of government policies and practices. It was also a great opportunity to discuss what each of us can do to contribute to raising awareness of issues around race and immigration and help build on the dedication and commitment that has gone into the making of this film.” – Brandon Thompson, Partner, Covington.

Parliament, Westminster – June 2022

On 6th June, Hostile screened at Portcullis House in Westminster,  where the film was watched by MPs, policy influencers and organisations at Parliament. 

The event was sponsored by Kate Osamor, Labour MP for Edmonton,  and it was wonderful to see so much support for challenging the hostile environment.

The audience included  the likes of Lord Alf Dubs, the High Commissioner for Rwanda and Jeremy Corbyn MP, it was an all round incredible event.

Jeremy Corbyn MP powerfully stated that “people are not born racist” and this was an important takeaway in the face of continued delays in Windrush compensation and scandals of institutional racism, while MP Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi commented that the film “is an important step in highlighting the experiences of those most impacted by this Government’s callous hostile environment policy” and that the film “stimulated debate and furthered calls to end the hostile environment.”

Thank you to our incredible panelists, Sir Stephen Timms MP, Anthony Byran, and Natalie Barnes! And of course to our host Jasmine Dotiwala.

Following the screening, Sir Timms had this to say about the event:

The power of the film Hostile is in exposing the impact on ordinary people of Home Office Hostile Environment policies.  I am glad a screening has taken place in the House of Commons, and hope that future screenings will help make the impact of these damaging policies much better known.

Caz Hattam, co-founder of The Unity Project said:

I would recommend Hostile and discussions with the community behind it to anyone who wants to understand more about how our communities and neighbourhoods are impacted by – and resisting – current immigration policies, in particular ‘no recourse to public funds”

Raising awareness about these issues has always been a priority and we couldn’t agree more with these comments.

Lordship Hub, Tottenham, North London – May 2022

On 20th May, Hostile was screened at the Community building, Lordship Hub, in Tottenham, North London. 

“We were thrilled to have the director, Sonita Gale, in attendance to lead a discussion afterwards. It was well attended and everyone found the film to be both compassionate and informative and it stimulated a good and at times very personal discussion afterwards. One participant said, “The film was excellent, and the discussion after was also fascinating. Both my friend and I left feeling very connected to the community and inspired to fight the hostile environment.” Another said, ‘Thank you! We all thought the film was excellent and really moving. What a lovely, sensitive and intelligent filmmaker’”

Oxford University (Lincoln and Worcester Colleges) – May 2022

On 18th May Sonita Gale attended a screening and Q&A of Hostile at Lincoln College, Oxford University, in collaboration with Worcester College. The discussion revolved around how we can decolonise curriculums and deconstruct our understanding of British history. With over 40% of Lincoln students being from countries outside the UK/EU, the film held particular resonance, with further discussions about how the hostile environment affects students.

This event continues the educational tour with Hostile across the country, with the aim of engaging students to get involved with campaigning for positive change. 

“The documentary masterfully demonstrates that the hostile environment policies didn’t come out of nowhere, but are intimately linked to the legacy of Empire and the legislation of successive governments. This legacy is not a historical artefact but provides a foundation for contemporary policies which have devastating consequences in the here and now, on the lives of migrants and other marginalised groups. I look forward to being involved in discussions as to how Hostile can be added to the curriculum, and I know that students at Oxford will be keen to get involved in the impact campaign to create tangible change. I was inspired by Sonita’s final words during the Q&A to do whatever you can, small actions are meaningful.” Rea Duxbury, Learning Development Officer, Worcester College, University of Oxford

“It was wonderful to host Sonita Gale with a screening of her film Hostile. We had students, academics, and change-makers in the room and the conversation the film inspired helped to further unpick the realities for so many of the UK’s marginalised communities and what people in education can do to affect meaningful and sustained change. Events like this help to keep the conversation on the table. We are excited to see what comes of her meetings with Rishi Sunak (Lincoln College, 2001) and the forthcoming parliamentary visit!” Dr Joseph da Costa, Leverhulme Early Career Fellow, Oxford University

Anglia Ruskin University – March 2022

On 24th March Hostile screened at Anglia Ruskin University and had a positive response from the students that attended. The screening marked the beginning of Hostile’s nationwide educational tour.

“Everybody mentioned how powerful the film was. One of my master students is very keen to get involved in the discussion to incorporate the film into the curriculum”

Newham Council – March 2022

March 21st was the UN’s International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. The 2022 edition of the International Day focused on the theme “VOICES FOR ACTION AGAINST RACISM”This edition aimed to highlight the importance of strengthening meaningful and safe public participation and representation in all areas of decision-making to prevent and combat racial discrimination.

Newham Council hosted an event to mark the day with an exciting Q&A surrounding racism and the hostile environment hosted by Zita Holbourne, the award winning community & human rights campaigner and activist, followed by poetry and choir performances, alongside a special screening of the Hostile trailer. View the full recording of the event here.

Doctor’s Association UK – March 2022

On Overseas NHS Workers Day, DAUK hosted a special online screening of Hostile with over 100 attendees. DAUK is a non-profit organisation which advocates for the medical profession and the wider NHS. They are also impact partners with Hostile.

Until the authorities acknowledge the contributions of international healthcare workers in the NHS and establish measures to retain staff, the quality of care and patient safety will suffer – and that is going to hurt.” – Overseas NHS Workers Day organiser, Dr Pushpo Hossain

Toynbee Hall – February 2022

Toynbee Hall hosted a screening as part of an event called “We Wear Our Passports On Our Faces”. Director Sonita Gale was joined by speakers from migrants rights organisations including Migrants Organise (who are impact partners for Hostile) and South Asia Solidarity Group who shared their knowledge and experience of organising around the Nationality and Borders Bill, the impacts on communities and advice on how to mobilise.

“Attendees mentioned they were really moved and struck by the film Hostile and the narratives and journeys of the featured individuals. People mentioned that they were motivated to find out more about those affected in their own communities and how they could show solidarity and support them which they were able to do through speaking to the various organisations who spoke at the event.”