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Children at a film festival

I would like to run a family film festival at my premises - what do I need to consider?

Q: I would like to start running Sunday afternoon family film festivals at my premises for parents and children. What licensing issues do I need to consider before running these events?

A: You must firstly check your Premises licence to ensure that you have permission to show films and whether there are any other restrictions relating to the times you can show them. Secondly, you must ensure that there are no conditions on your licence preventing the entry of children to your premises. Clearly the children will probably need to be accompanied by responsible adults (see our Top Tips, right) but are there conditions restricting their entry in any event or requiring them to be off the premises after a certain time? Compliance with the relevant BBFC or local authority film classification is of course vital, breach of which would be a criminal offence.

In addition, you may need other permissions from the distributor of the film and these permissions vary depending upon whether you intend to charge your customers to view the film. If you intend to charge, you may need a Single Title Screening Licence. If not, a Public Video Screening Licence or an Umbrella Licence may be needed. I suggest you check the websites of the main film distributors, Filmbank, the BFI and the Motion Picture Licensing Company for more details.

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