Bolton International Film Festival is coming back for the fifth time, featuring over 300 short films and 57 UK premieres.

Opening this year’s event is special guest Julie Hesmondhalgh, star of BBC drama, The Pact, and known for her role as Hayley Cropper in Coronation Street.

The festival welcomes industry guests, award winning editor Anna Price, producers Rebecca Mark-Lawson and Anna Griffin, who will be leader a session on 'Shorts to Features' and Simon Neelson of the BBC Writers Room, who will be giving advice on crafting compelling stories and characters.

Making a return will be Horwich-born writer Chris Lunt alongside co-writer, who worked on Sky drama, Devils, starring Patrick Dempsey.

Festival director Adrian Barber, said: “It’s the biggest festival to date, with more films and more industry sessions than ever before.

“After the success of the online edition last year we’re offering the best of both with a hybrid edition, the films will be available in the comfort of your own home from Wednesday, October 6 to Sunday, October 17, or on the big screen from Wednesday, September 29 to Sunday, October 3, at the cinema.

“There is a real tangible buzz about the festival this year. We’re seeing filmmakers flying in from all around the world, including from the USA, Canada, Germany, Denmark, Spain anf France.

“It’s a real surprise to see people coming so far but it’s great to see so many people coming together and join us in Bolton.

He added: There is something to cater for all tastes, we have drama, documentary, animation, fashion, dance, music films and VR.360,./

"These are all free to attend along with the films screening at The Bolton Museum and Library.”

Higlights this year include Andrew Kotting’s Diseased and Disorderly, Normawonga Khumalo’s Five Tiger and Dan Thornburn’s gritty drama, Salt Water Town.

Also making appearances are several comedies, including Peter Mullen’s Don vs Lightning, and Harry Sherriff’s absurdism romp, Harry Is Not Okay.

The festival runs from September 29 to October 3, more details, tickets and passes can be found at