Portsmouth University hosts week of satire

This Is The Week That Is will celebrate all things satirical.
This Is The Week That Is will celebrate all things satirical.
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  • This Is The Week That Is is a week of talks from satirical writers, actors and producers and screenings of satirical films and television
  • The event organised by the University of Portsmouth and its partners Portsmouth Film Society and No. 6 Cinema
  • It takes place from Monday, April 13 until Friday, April 17
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In the run up to the General Election, the University of Portsmouth is celebrating all things satire with public talks, events and screenings devoted to lampooning our political elite.

This Is The Week That Is will take place this week beginning tomorrow.

The event’s organiser is Olly Gruner, a lecturer in the university’s School of Art and Design. He says: ‘With election fever growing, this is the time to celebrate the films and television programmes that have driven a comic stake deep into the heart of the political process?

‘In the UK we have a great tradition of satire, but we should also look to the present and its importance today.’

The University and its partners Portsmouth Film Society and No. 6 Cinema will give renewed credibility to the word coalition as they jointly host some of satire’s biggest names.

Satire is a humorous, accessible critique and gets people interested in politics

Olly Gruner, organiser of This Is The Week That Is

Steve Nallon, the man responsible for voicing Spitting Image’s Maggie Thatcher, will discuss his contributions to satire in the 1980s and introduce a screening of the hilarious 1987 Election Special.

TV comedy writer Laurence Marks revisits his government-baiting classic The New Statesman and its monstrous protagonist Alan B’Stard.

Alistair Beaton will discuss his 30 years of writing and producing satire, which includes Not the Nine O’Clock News, Spitting Image and The Trial of Tony Blair. He will then introduce a screening of his David Blunkett send-up A Very Social Secretary.

Eminent historians and film scholars Kevin Brownlow, Lincoln Geraghty and Van Norris will introduce screenings of satirical masterpieces The Great Dictator, Dr Strangelove and Heavy Traffic.

And for those of an artistic sensibility, why not try your hand at caricature?

Professional illustrator Louis Netter will be encouraging attendees to have a pop at a politician of their choice.

Olly says: ‘I read a great quote from Alistair Beaton which says that satire can say to people you were right to be outraged, you were right to feel you’re being lied to. Don’t stop being angry.

‘On the one hand satire should make you laugh, but on the other it should make you angry.

‘Satire is a humorous, accessible critique and gets people interested in politics, which is why now is such a great time to celebrate some of the classics of the genre.’

The project is supported by Film Hub South East with National Lottery funds distributed by the BFI Film Audience Network (FAN).

To book tickets please visit the events website, titwti.wordpress.com.

For further information email oliver.gruner@port.ac.uk