With significant uncertainty still affecting London’s indie cinema scene, RADIANT CIRCUS is taking time to do some necessary development work. As part of a project we’re calling ‘Revive The Dark’, we will pause listing for 2020, completely rebuild our website & email services, expand our scene coverage, & launch a new sponsorship scheme for London’s indie exhibitors in 2021. Here’s everything you need to know. 


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My mission at RADIANT CIRCUS has always been to help promote and preserve alternative screen culture in London. With significant uncertainty about the immediate future, I’ve taken some time to go uncharacteristically quiet and think about what happens next.

Film London once described RADIANT CIRCUS as “London’s home of alternative screen culture” and I think it’s time to really deliver on that ambition. That means taking a bold approach to the future development of, extending the site’s coverage and support for London’s alternative cinema scene.

RADIANT CIRCUS / Revive The Dark is a plan I’ve had under consideration for some time. It peaked out from behind the curtains a little while ago, but the economic realities of cinema in the time of COVID sent it scurrying back into the darkness… where it has continued to evolve.

Here’s what I think RADIANT CIRCUS can create for London’s alternative film fans:

  • A coherent shop window for London’s alternative cinema scene.
  • Fully searchable, shareable screen event listings.
  • More new writing from more new writers about London’s alternative cinema attractions.
  • A reciprocal sponsorship scheme for DIY screen events funded by our subscribers.
  • An annual showcase season & awards ceremony for outstanding acts of exhibition (also funded by our subscribers).

It’s going to take time to achieve all that, but if you don’t step out of the door with a destination in mind, the journey can become fruitless. So here I go…

Getting started

To get everything started (and continuing to weave these various plans around my various day jobs!), I have decided to pause listings for the duration of 2020. I will use the rest of November and December to do the following:

  • Start the first phase of completely rebuilding the site to bring its core WordPress technologies up to date & deliver an improved email service
  • Create new directories for film clubs, film festivals & indie exhibitors
  • Revise my Patreon subscription tiers to create a screen sponsorship fund
  • Reach out to potential contributors and creators
  • Prepare to rejoin the ranks of London’s DIY exhibitors with my TOKEN HOMO queer horror cinema side hustle to a side hustle…

If all goes well, everything will be fully back up and running in early January 2021. As I hope (with all my dark heart) London’s cinemas will be.

How can you help?

A small but brilliant community of loyal monthly subscribers at Patreon have been supporting all of the site’s domain registrations and hosting fees to keep everything running so far. But RADIANT CIRCUS will need considerably more volunteer effort and subscriber power to meaningfully revive the dark.

If you can help out, here’s what I want and need for Christmas:

  • WordPress design expertise, graphic design skills, & anyone with better ways of integrating content into automated email / rewards / social media feeds to whittle away at the considerable workload.
  • New writers & social media geniuses to help create a steady flow of insightful content & spread the gospel of alternative cinema.
  • New subscribers at Patreon to lend your support to help everything here build and grow (+ get some great rewards!).
  • New donors for one-off declarations of celluloid love via PayPal.

Looking ahead

The next stages will be to dig deeper to sponsor screenings and ultimately reward creativity and ambition. I’m still working on the maths but, in the very near future, a percentage of every RADIANT CIRCUS monthly subscription will go into a Revive The Dark Screen Sponsorship Fund. DIY film exhibitors will then be able to pitch for financial support for their venue-based events. After that, it will be great to celebrate these endeavours in an annual showcase season and awards ceremony (but that might take a little longer to see the light of a projector bulb…).

And that’s the meat of it…

If there are ways you think you can help achieve this vision – skills, resources, much better ideas! – please get in touch. I’d love to talk to you.

Until we can gather in darkness again, stay safe & stay well.


Barker-In-Chief // RADIANT CIRCUS




*THE SMALL PRINT: Opinions author’s own. // As accurate as we could make it. Apologies for any errors. Updates & corrections will be made to the online version only. // Event dates/times/formats are subject to change by the venue/organiser. Events may already be sold out at the time of posting, so please click quickly. // We try to list as many original format screenings as we can (8 to 70MM), but sometimes formats change due to age of the print, availability, logistics etc, so please check ahead with your venue if the format is your thing. // All images are used in the spirit of fair use for reporting & review – no ownership is implied or intended / unless otherwise credited to RADIANT CIRCUS as the original rights holder. We will remove any images immediately upon request – just get in touch. // We don’t filter our listings by age/certification: all readers & subscribers should therefore be 18+. // Finally, we always try to follow The Carny Code by “not screwing up anyone else’s game”, but everyone can make mistakes… If something does go wrong, we will always do our best to put it right. //.