Leading culture in Delft: Wednesday night’s Fillum.
A small group, mostly men and sometimes women, the stairs lieads to the cinema. Some conquer a comfortable place on a soft sofa, other have to settle for ordinary chairs. The old DWH projector hangs neatly, focused and with its light hot. What does Fred serve them tonight? When the images start to move and the music grows louder, the last light goes off and the audience is surrendered to the film.
The film nights from DWH began in 2001. Films were shown using VHS tapes on the two or three television sets that we were lucky to have. Only after some time, when a core of viewers had formed, could we get access to the projector of De Nieuwe Amateur. Around this time DVDs became popular and there were more LGBT movies available in this medium. Some of them gems of low-budget films, created and distributed via gay-specific channels, that would never go into the cinema. The movie nights were well attended. The programming however was far from easy. Ad and Eric screened all the movies that they had collected over the years and ran out of movies after a year or two. A highlight of these two years occurred in the first year, at the premiere of a movie about the oldest Rotterdam’s gay bar from the filmmaker Rob de Vires. During the discussion with the director old memories were brought up and he expressed his concern about the preservation of his film and video archive. Converting the dozens of movies, sometimes full-length ones, to a modern sustainable medium was outside his financial and organizational power.
We don’t know precisely when, but at some point Fred came and saved the fillum team. After the DWH went into a dark period in 2003 and was almost bankrupt, the film night was resurrected and reborn into today’s lounge room.
With a donated projector, movies could now be projected weekly on a large format. Fred began then the collection of DVDs with movies that have homosexuality as a subject or as an important theme. His experience with poking and dealing with antique books was a great gift, because Fred knows about little gems of films from all around the world. These acquired treasures are generously shown to the viewers and are often small refreshments, presented in the style of the country the movie comes from. The audience gets more than their money’s worth because the movie night is free (for members) and you frequently get special films that are not release in the cinema in the Netherlands. According to bookshop Vrolijk in Amsterdam is our little DWH Film Night a leading club in the Netherlands. Not even the COC or other LGBT association show a gay movie every week. They always check our program to know which movie they should grab next. Come and be a part of this small exclusive club.