Legendary left-wing film director Ken Loach has never been one to toe the line, stubbornly refusing to trade in his socialist credentials for Hollywood megabucks. He prefers to make films about real people and real issues set in rainy bits of the British Isles. And when he did shoot in the Los Angeles sunshine, it was to film Bread and Roses — which is about janitors striking for social justice. Next week he'll explain just why he thinks politics and film should not be separated and how a film can be a campaign rather than merely an entertainment.
Loach will delivers this year’s George Lansbury Memorial Lecture, named after the social reformer who led the Labour Party in the 1930s. He'll also talk with historian and cultural critic Sir Christopher Frayling in a Q&A that follows a screening of Loach's early film Kes. The 1969 classic is about a working class kid and his pet bird (imagine Disney doing it — then imagine the exact opposite), which came seventh in the BFI's list of best British films of all time.
It promises to be a typically brazen lecture; Loach has previous form, for example, he once memorably said that Mrs Thatcher's funeral ought to be privatised and given to the lowest bidder in memory of her economic policies. He also recently saw Julian Assange scurrying away into the Ecuadorian embassy and losing him the money he put up as surety in support of the Wikileaks founder.
Ken Loach will speak at the Spotlight, 30 Hay Currie Street, London E14 6GN on 27 November at 6.30pm. Book here for tickets, £10 (£8 concessions).