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10feb7:30 PMSilent Comedy Gala 20197:30 PM Bristol Hippodrome

16jan7:30 PMFor Heaven’s Sake! 
Slapstick at the Cathedral7:30 PM Watershed

10feb2:00 PMSlapstick Sunday with Andy Day2:00 PM Bristol Hippodrome

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16jan10:50 AMChaplin: A King In New York (1957)10:50 AM Watershed

Event Details

With David Robinson

WEDS 16 JAN 1050hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: Charles Chaplin UK 110mins U

To open the 15th edition of the Slapstick Festival… a talkie! Introduced by Chaplin biographer and critic, David Robinson, A King in New York is Chaplin’s take on 1950s America. Made during his exile from the country due to his leftist views, it stars Chaplin as a peaceable king who runs afoul of the House Un-American Activities Committee. Roberto Rossellini wisely called the work “the film of a free man.”

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16jan11:30 AMKeaton: Battling Butler (1926)11:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

WEDS 16 JAN 1330hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: Buster Keaton US 74mins U

Keaton always selected Battling Butler (1926) as one of his favourite features. Based on the Broadway play, the story revolves around two Alfred Butlers – one (Keaton) a mild-mannered millionaire, the other a boxing world champion. When Butler-the-fop finds love with a mountain girl, he assumes the identity and arouses the wrath of Butler-the-Brute, leading to a dramatic showdown which inspired Scorsese’s filming of Raging Bull. Introduced here by film editor and PhD student of Keaton’s film-making, Polly Rose (University of Bristol). With live accompaniment by Günter A Buchwald and Frank Bockius.

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16jan4:00 PMHoly Smoke! - Religion & Comedy4:00 PM Watershed

Event Details

WEDS 16 JAN 1600hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

A panel discussion hosted by Andrew Kelly in conversation with comedians Robin Ince and Lucy Porter as well as The Rev. Emma Langley, Vicar of Westbury Park.

Following a screening of Chaplin’s THE PILGRIM (1923), the panel will explore whether ‘being funny’ is justification for mocking religion, or if there are some things comedy should not touch. In light of controversial comments on religion made in 2018 by Boris Johnson and subsequently by Rowan Atkinson, The Pilgrim tackles a subject that still resonates today.

In partnership with Festival of Ideas.

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16jan7:30 PMFor Heaven’s Sake! 
Slapstick at the Cathedral7:30 PM Watershed

Event Details

Hosted by Robin Ince
WED 16 JAN 1930hrs £15.00/£12.00

Join us for an evening of unadulterated cinematic joy. Sit back in the grandeur of Bristol Cathedral and enjoy three classic silent comedies on the big screen accompanied by live music, featuring Harold Lloyd’s classic feature For Heaven’s Sake (1928) and films from Laurel & Hardy and Anita Garvin & Marion Byron.

Your host for the evening is Infinite Monkey Cage (Radio 4) co-host, stand up comedian and writer Robin Ince.

With live accompaniment from the European Silent Screen Virtuosi featuring Günter A. Buchwald, Frank Bockius, Romano Todesco and Marc Roos. (Tickets via Watershed).

In partnership with Bristol Festival of Ideas.

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17jan9:30 AMLeading Women: Rediscovering Alice Howell9:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

THURS 17 JAN 0930hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

Stand-up comedian and writer Lucy Porter champions this rarely seen prolific performer who was a huge comedy star in the late teens and early 1920s. Howell was one of the few women permitted to be funny in her own right in the male-dominated world of silent screen comedy. Here, Lucy will introduce a selection of her funniest newly restored silent comedy shorts. Curated by Ben Model and Steve Massa with special thanks to the Library of Congress. 
With live piano accompaniment.

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17jan11:30 AMLeading Women: 
Mary Pickford: Little Annie Roonie (1925)11:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

mn_text]THURS 17 Jan 1130hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: William Beaudine US 94mins 12A

Co-founder of two studios (Pickford-Fairbanks and United Artists), Academy Award winner Mary Pickford plays a tomboy of the tenements in this comedy-drama, which she also wrote. Shot entirely on set at the Pickford-Fairbanks Studio, the film co-stars William Haines and a wide-ranging, multi-ethnic cast. The film met with huge critical and commercial success upon its original release, proving fans and critics alike wanted the then 33-year old Mary to stay a child forever.

Introduced by presenter and Pickford admirer, Chris Serle.

With live piano accompaniment.

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17jan2:00 PMLeading Women: On the Trail of Cunégonde2:00 PM Watershed

Event Details

THURS 17 Jan 1400hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

Around 1912-1913, the French company Société Lux produced comedies with the main character Cunégonde. The surviving films feature the same actress playing either an unruly maid, an annoying spinster or a ferocious wife (always called Cunégonde). The true identity of the actress playing Cunégonde has been a mystery for decades, until now… This presentation by Elif Rongen-Kaynakçi, Curator of Eye Filmmuseum, will include a screening of the surviving films along with what we now know about the actress. Discover this extraordinary story about a mysterious woman who was internationally acclaimed in her time but was then lost for more than a century. With live piano accompaniment from John Sweeney.

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17jan4:30 PMRobin Ince: 
I’m A Joke And So Are You: Part 24:30 PM Watershed

Event Details

THURS 17 JAN 1630hrs
Watershed £8.00 – £10.00

Robin did an event about his book in Bristol in October but forgot to mention all his comedy heroes and the stories of Frankie Howerd, Rik Mayall, Laurel & Hardy and more, so now he’s coming to Slapstick festival to 
do part two. This is a celebration of comedy and its ability to connect people via foolishness and silly voices.

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17jan6:30 PMLes Deux Timides (1928)6:30 PM Watershed

Event Details

THURS 17 JAN 1830hrs
Watershed £8.00 – £10.00
Dir: René Clair FR 77mins 12A

René Clair’s LES DEUX TIMIDES takes what could be a Max Linder scenario of a young middle-class man overcoming obstacles in pursuit of a pretty girl, merges it with Chaplinesque outsider charm and punctuates it with Keystone-quality chaos, in a lavish new restoration from the Cinémathèque Française. Accompanied live by Günter A Buchwald, Romano Todesco and Frank Bockius. Introduced by film historian Kevin Brownlow.

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17jan8:45 PMHappiness (1934)8:45 PM Watershed

Event Details

THURS 17 JAN 2045hrs
Watershed (Cinema 3) £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: Aleksandr Medvedkin USSR 95mins 12A

This Russian comedy-drama features a hapless loser (with the surname of Loser) played by Pyotr Zinovyev who undergoes a series of misadventures with avaricious clergy, a tired horse and a walking granary (among other things) on his road to collectivised happiness. Screened with the original synchronised score.

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18jan9:30 AMSydney, The Other Chaplin (2017)9:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

FRI 18 JAN 0930hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: Eric Lange FR/US 58mins 12A

Would Charlie Chaplin have ever reached his heights of success if it weren’t for his big brother, Sydney? 
An improbable character inhabiting the shadows with a fiction-like destiny, Sydney’s role is explored in this new documentary from Lobster Films. A larger than life true story of Charlie’s brother is revealed, along with his role behind the scenes of the most recognised character in the world. The documentary is screened along with 
one of Sydney’s early one-reelers and is introduced by Chaplin biographer David Robinson.

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18jan11:30 AMRediscoveries and Revelations11:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

Honest Hutch (1920)
FRI 18 JAN 1130hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

Clarence G. Badger US 60mins 12A
Watch one of the most popular figures in the United States of the 1930s, Will Rogers, in this rare silent comedy western. With a career spanning stage, silents, talkies, vaudeville, journalism and social commentary, HONEST HUTCH is a wonderful chance to see Rogers on-screen. Brought to you from the personal collection of film historian, Kevin Brownlow, who says: “I am very fond of HONEST HUTCH as it’s a lovely piece of Americana and I hope you will be, too.” Will Rogers is an acquired taste – slow, charming and amusing in his titles as well as his actions, he is well worth watching. HONEST HUTCH was directed by Clarence Badger, who also made the much-loved HANDS UP, PATHS TO PARADISE and IT”.

With live Piano accompaniment.

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18jan12:50 PMA Celebration of Steamboat Bill, Jr.
12:50 PM Watershed

Event Details

With Peter Krämer
FRI 18 JAN 1250hrs
Watershed C3 £5.00 – £8.00

Peter Krämer, the author of the BFI Film Classics volume on Buster Keaton’s The General makes a welcome return to Slapstick Festival to discuss one of Buster’s most accomplished works. Using illustrative clips from Steamboat Bill, Jr., Senior Research Fellow in Cinema & TV at De Montfort University Krämer explores the film’s style and themes and its place in Keaton’s career.

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18jan2:00 PMStan (2006)2:00 PM Watershed

Event Details

With David Robinson and Robin Ince
FRI 18 JAN 1400hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00
Dir: Jon Sen UK 58mins 12A

The perfect accompaniment to the critically acclaimed biopic, 
Stan & Ollie (2019). STAN (2006) is a BBC TV movie that offers a moving tribute to the world’s greatest comedy partnership with the drama focused on Stan Laurel’s final visit to his dying friend, Oliver ‘Babe’ Hardy and reveals how Laurel is faced with the ghosts of his past. Critic and film historian, David Robinson, 
who met and interviewed Laurel & Hardy during their appearance at Bristol Hippodrome in the 1950s, will be in post-screening discussion and Q&A with Robin Ince.

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18jan4:30 PMRediscoveries and Revelations: 
Lost & Found4:30 PM Watershed

Event Details

FRI 18 JAN 1630hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

From film collector Anthony Saffrey comes a further selection 
of rare and unseen silent comedy gems. Hosted by David Robinson and Anthony Saffrey these rare and unknown discoveries include Richard Bennett in A GUILDED YOUTH (1917), a rare comedy with Aimée Campton and Rene Hervil in MAUD AND THE BACHELORS (FRA Urban-Eclipse 1914) and TOMMY MARRIES HIS SISTER (Fra 1910). Join us for a memorable afternoon of discovery and delight. Accompanied by Daan Van den Hurk on piano and Elizabeth-Jane Baldry on harp.

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18jan7:30 PMAn Audience with Little & Large: A Larger Than Life Story7:30 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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FRI 18 JAN 1930hrs £18.00

In conversation with presenter and writer Matthew Sweet, one of Britain’s best comedy double acts of all time, Little and Large. At their peak Syd Little and Eddie Large attracted up to 25 million viewers to The Little and Large Show (1976-1992). Tragedy hit in the form of serious health issues for Eddie and a fight for his life, leading to the premature end of their act. Hear their unique showbiz story in their first onstage appearance together for decades and following their triumphant 2018 TV reunion on Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway. 

18jan10:00 PMLaurel & Hardy: Way Out West (1937) PG10:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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Pre-screening introduction from Bill Oddie and Robin Ince
FRI 18 JAN  2200hrs  £12.50*

In this classic comedy from Stan & Ollie a prospector enlists the pair to deliver the deed to a goldmine to his daughter Mary in Brushwood Gulch. When they arrive in the small village, Mary’s sinister guardian pretends to be Mary, thus fooling the hapless duo into handing over the deed. Upon meeting the real Mary, the pair realise their mistake and set about getting the deed into the rightful owner’s hands. Considered by many – including Bill Oddie – to be Laurel & Hardy’s finest and funniest film, this screening is proceeded by a brief onstage chat with Robin Ince and Bill Oddie. 

19jan9:30 AMEarly Slapstick Animation 
With Peter Lord9:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

SAT 19 JAN 0930hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

Cinema was still a precocious toddler when it acquired a brash, bouncy sibling. No sooner had the great silent comedians worked out how to put slapstick into the movies than cartoonists got in on the act, using the unique properties of animation to bring ever more inventive and hilarious films to the screen. Peter Lord, co-founder of Aardman, will present some unusual gems from the early, magical days of animation – featuring a cast of cats, rabbits and of course, one very famous mouse.

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19jan11:25 AMLouise Brooks: Icon, Muse, Comedian with Sally Phillips11:25 AM Bristol Old Vic

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It’s the Old Army Gang (1926) PG
SAT 19 JAN 1115hrs £12.50
Dir:E. Sutherland US 75mins

Actress, presenter and comedian Sally Phillips (Smack the Pony, Miranda, Bridget Jones franchise) joins Slapstick to introduce this film co-starring the silent screen actress Louise Brooks in an early W.C. Fields silent comedy. Best known for her iconic leading role in Pandora’s Box (1928) Brooks developed her acting skills in comedies working for Paramount studios and this, her fourth feature is one in which her comedic talents shine.  It’s the Old Army Game (1926) is an uproarious comedy in which the inimitable W.C. Fields finds it impossible to get some sleep, a non stop comedy of errors. With live musical accompaniment from the European Silent Screen Virtuosi. 

19jan11:30 AMYOUNG SLAPSTICK EVENT: Meet Charlie!11:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

With David Robinson
SAT 19 JAN 1130hrs
Watershed £3.00

A one-hour programme presented by David Robinson, who knew Sir Charles Chaplin and wrote the definitive biography of cinema’s greatest clown – the man with the funny walk who still delights a world-wide audience, young and old, after a hundred years.

With live piano accompaniment from Daan van der Hurk. Recommended for age 6+.

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19jan2:00 PMComplete Goodies2:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

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Richard Herring in conversation with Tim, Bill and Graeme
SAT 19 JAN 1400hrs £16.00

Finally! The last, great unreleased DVD box set has seen the light of day. For the first time ever anywhere in the world every episode of THE GOODIES has been released for obsessive fans – young and old.

To celebrate, Graeme Garden, Tim Brooke-Taylor and Bill Oddie reunite on stage at Bristol Old Vic for a unique afternoon in conversation. Graeme, Tim and Bill will talk about their sparkling career in comedy and the enduring popularity of ‘The Goodies’ decades on. Prepare for delight and discovery as ardent fan Richard Herring rummages through his new box set for classic clips from one of the best loved TV comedies.

19jan5:00 PMTim Vine’s Top Comedy Moments5:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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SAT 19 JAN 1700hrs £15.00

Just what makes Tim Vine’s comedy mind work? Where do those puns and one-liners come from? Who and what made him laugh when he was growing up? These questions and more will be answered when Tim – stand up legend, co-star of 35 episodes of NOT GOING OUT and host of the new ITV game show FOOTBALL GENIUS – reveals his favourite comedy favourite moments and personal influences. With Richard Herring leading the chat, this will be a rare chance to witness what happens when two masters of quick wit and tight timing team up. Not to be missed!

19jan8:00 PMTeenage Kicks:
 The Inbetweeners Phenomenon*8:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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with Damon Beesley, Iain Morris and Joe Thomas
SAT 19 JAN 2000hrs £18.00

In just three series, The Inbetweeners (2008-2010) became nothing short of a national comedy phenomenon. Series creator/writers Damon Beesley and Iain Morris created four totally new hapless teenagers the nation could identify with. Here, in conversation with fan Richard Herring, creators Iain and Damon and actor Joe Thomas (Simon Cooper) reflect on the show’s success and its ongoing legacy.

Offer: Enjoy both Inbetweeners events for just £25.00*

19jan10:00 PMThe Inbetweeners Movie (2011)10:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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Introduced by members of the cast and crew

SAT 19 JAN 2200hrs £12.50*
Dir: Ben Palmer UK 97mins 15

This critically-acclaimed spin off from the BAFTA award winning TV series set the record for the biggest opening weekend for a comedy film in the UK. The boys have finished school forever, and are off on their first lads holiday in Malia – with lots of fantasies but not much idea of reality. It’s a real coming-of-age film – where four boys try to be cool with classically embarrassing consequences. But all’s well that end’s well and there’s a proper feel-good vibe to this film!

Offer: Enjoy both Inbetweeners events for just £25.00*

20jan9:30 AMForgotten Heroes of Slapstick Comedy With Robert Ross9:30 AM Watershed

Event Details

SUN 20 Jan 0930hrs
Watershed £5.00 – £8.00

Why are Eric & Ernie, Tommy Cooper and Frankie Howerd so fondly remembered, while Arthur Haynes, Charlie Drake, Harry Langdon and more languish in the archives?

These once celebrated stars, from the silent days of Hollywood to the comedy club boom, come under the spotlight in this affectionate tribute by comedy historian Robert Ross.

Specially tailored for Slapstick Festival to celebrate the forgotten heroes of slapstick comedy
…forgotten no longer.

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20jan11:15 AMClassic Big Screen Comedy: Dad’s Army (1971)11:15 AM Bristol Old Vic

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Introduced by Frank Williams

SUN 20 JAN 1115hrs £12.50**

This classic feature spin off from the TV series was made between the third and fourth Dad’s Army TV series, by which time the show was firmly established as Britain’s best-loved sitcom, a position it retains to this day, more than 40 years on from the end of its original nine-year run. 

 

*Offer: Enjoy both DAD’S ARMY events for just £20.00

20jan2:00 PMMore Tea Vicar?2:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

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With Dad’s Army Vicar, Frank Williams
SUN 20 JAN  1400hrs  £15.00**

Join Dad’s Army Vicar, actor Frank Williams, as he celebrates a lifetime on stage, film and television. Hosted by author, entertainer and producer, Chris Gidney, gain a first-hand insight into the slightly tetchy vicar, trying to come to terms with the elderly platoon’s invasion of his beloved church hall. Plus a unique glimpse behind the scenes of Dad’s Army, including Frank’s rarely seen home movie of the Dad’s Army cast on tour.

**Offer: enjoy both DAD’S ARMY events for just £20.00**

20jan3:30 PMSlattery Will Get You Nowhere!3:30 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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SUN 20 JAN 1530hrs £12.50
Bristol Old Vic Studio

Slapstick welcomes comedian and actor Tony Slattery as he reveals all in conversation with comedy historian Robert Ross. After playing to packed houses at last year’s Edinburgh Festival with a return to his greatest triumph Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Tony Slattery is back with a no-holds-barred reflection on his life and work; from the Cambridge Footlights to the demons that have consistently dogged his success.

This is an unstructured and unpredictable gallop through several lifetimes worth of poignant and hilarious anecdotes. Anything can happen and it probably will!

20jan5:00 PMJimmy Cricket LIVE5:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

Event Details

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SUN 20 JAN 1700hrs  £12.50

Jimmy Cricket is without doubt a 1980s comedy icon. With his trademark wellington boots (on the wrong feet), his famous letters from his Mammy and his catchphrases of ‘come closer’ and ‘there’s more’, he holds the hearts of all those that were fans of his TV and radio shows. As hilarious as ever, and winning new fans wherever he performs, Jimmy will excite and delight audiences with his special brand of family friendly stand up comedy. A real nostalgic family treat.

20jan6:30 PMHancock & Co. – One Man, Many Voices6:30 PM

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With James Hurn
SUN 20 JAN 1830hrs £12.50
Bristol Old Vic Studio

James Hurn – a talented actor and impressionist – will be performing a brand-new programme including one classic episode of Hancock’s Half Hour, and one episode he has written himself in the same style as Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, with James voicing the entire cast. James Hurn (Deadringers) is a master at recreating the accents and personas of such iconic 20th century British favourites as Tony Hancock, Sidney James, Hattie Jacques, Bill Kerr and Kenneth Williams. The new show is performed in the style of a radio performance in front of a live audience, bringing to life the classic days of radio comedy.

“Utterly masterful and quite, quite superb”
Jon Culshaw –impressionist cast on tour.

20jan8:00 PMBarry Cryer and Colin Sell: 
Live Again!8:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

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SUN 20 JAN 2000hrs £16.00

In yet another farewell tour, Baz returns, re-united with Colin Sell who refuses to take no for an answer. Barry Cryer, still a “Sprightly Veteran” (Undertaker’s Gazette) and Colin Sell a “Legendary Virtuoso” (Pensioner’s Weekly) combine to entertain you with songs, jokes and the amazing realisation that they’re still here. 

20jan10:00 PMLaurel Hardy’s Choice Morsels
 with Richard Herring and friends10:00 PM Bristol Old Vic

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SUN 20 JAN 2200hrs £12.50

Laugh out loud with three classic shorts from the greatest comedy double act of all time: Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy. This is a rare chance to see the boys as they were meant to be seen, on the big screen. 

Comedian Richard Herring is joined by other festival guests to reveal their top comedy shorts. Colin Sell (I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue) will be making an appearance to accompany one of shorts with live piano. 

What better way to finish your weekend and the Festival than with a laugh.