Private Project

Cinema Now

A fragmented collection of closed cinemas in London during lockdown, captured on Super 8mm film.

Cinema Now is a short, observational documentary film (presented in the contemporary 'Direct Cinema' style) and shot entirely on KODAK Vision3 Super 8mm Film. The film depicts closed cinemas from the point of view of passers-by, taking a moments pause and looking patiently at building exteriors and facades.

A range of cinema sites are included, though they all have one thing in common - they are all 'independent' in some way, shape or form, be that their structural/operational model and/or by virtue of their programming. There are many different types of cinemas presented in the documentary - from repurposed former industrial and historic sites to hidden gems and underground meccas. There is no limit to where cinema is found, and this is certainly true of London's thriving film scene which is currently under threat. The documentary also serves to document our cinemas through a historic moment in time, creating a capsule of a turbulent period in all our lives - the COVID-19 pandemic.



If the FilmFreeway Native Player does not work (or if you'd like to see a full DCI 4K secure online version of the film) - there is a private Vimeo Screener available:

Password: CNFestivals2022

The film is available to screen from a 4K or 2K DCP, 4K or 2K ProRes and 35mm* (*at select screenings)

'Cinema Now' is presented in 4:3 in a DCI 'Flat' / 1.85:1 [aspect ratio] container, at 24fps, and in either a 5.1 Surround Sound Theatrical Mix or 2.0 Stereo Theatrical or Web Mix.

For screenings, there is a choice of Open Subtitles (burnt into the image) and Closed Subtitles (can be toggled on/off), or no subtitles at all.

To view the final version of the film with Closed Subtitles [english] embedded: click below -

For additional marketing & distribution assets including documentation, screening notes, artwork, teaser spots/trailers and specifications: go to

  • Louis Holder
    Old Suffolk Boys, Black Lake, One Night More, Palm Dreams, John Holder: Illustrator, Schneejungen
  • Louis Holder
  • Sandra Tomalka
    Angelus, Son of Satan, Politica Interna, Pas De Deux, Salt, Lactasia
  • Gaye Lockwood
    Executive Producers
  • John Holder
    Executive Producers
  • Hannah Holder
    Executive Producers
  • Caroline Chu
    Associate Producers
  • Zak Reay-Barry
    Associate Producers
  • Adriana Kytkova
    Production Assistant
    Break, The Pale Horse, The Change, These Broken Wings, City of Tiny Lights, Flying/Falling: Random Acts - Big Dance
  • Rob Szeliga
    Sound Design & Music
    The Winter Lake, The Uncertain Kingdom: Sauna, Layla, Granbad, Hydebank, The Element, Bitter Sea, Oksijan, Isha, The Sermon, Arnilia Grove, Chhaya
  • Vinzenz Stergin
    Guitar Performed by
  • Mario Antonio Liptaj
    Technical Advisor
    An Ugly Duckling Dreams of Flight, A Live Broadcast, Wolf Among Sheep, Terra Firma, Audrey and the Rocket
  • Kevin Timmins c/o Gauge Film
    Digital Intermediate (DI)
  • Gauge Film Ltd.
    Film Lab / Processing & 4K Scan Services
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Experimental, Short, Student
  • Genres:
    Observational, Super 8mm, Kodak, Motion Picture Film, Spoken Word, Political
  • Runtime:
    14 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    February 1, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    2,300 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Super 8mm
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - London South Bank University
  • Screen Power Film Festival
    London, UK
    United Kingdom
    February 28, 2022
    Award Winner: Best Documentary Short
  • La Brady Cinema
    March 1, 2022
    European Premiere + Q&A
  • Cotswold International Film Festival
    Cotswolds Region
    United Kingdom
    March 1, 2022
    Unofficial UK Premiere
    Award Winner: Best Documentary Short
  • CU Documentary Society (University of Cambridge Documentary Society)
    United Kingdom
    March 2, 2022
  • Westminster Film Society (University of Westminster Film Society)
    Harrow, North West London
    United Kingdom
    March 8, 2022
  • Clapperboard Golden Festival
    São Paulo
    March 9, 2022
    South America Premiere
  • Kings Cross Film Awards
    United Kingdom
    March 10, 2022
    Finalist: Best Documentary Short
  • Lift-Off Filmmaker Sessions @ Pinewood Studios
    Iver Heath, North West London
    United Kingdom
    March 21, 2022
  • Screener Short Films
    Stoke Newington, North London
    United Kingdom
    March 22, 2022
    Honorable Mention: Best Documentary
  • Filmmaker Sessions @ Pinewood Studios
    Iver Heath, North West London
    United Kingdom
    March 28, 2022
  • One Earth Awards
    March 31, 2022
  • APEX Film Awards
    United Kingdom
    April 8, 2022
  • Close-Up Film Centre
    Shoreditch, London
    United Kingdom
    April 8, 2022
    Official London Premiere
  • Coventry Phoenix Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    April 22, 2022
  • New Cross & Deptford Free Film Festival
    Deptford, South East London
    United Kingdom
    April 24, 2022
  • Student Cuts Film Festival
    May 12, 2022
  • Carmarthen Bay Film Festival
    Carmarthen Bay, Carmarthenshire, Wales
    United Kingdom
    May 16, 2022
    Regional BAFTA-Qualifying Festival
  • The Romford Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    May 24, 2022
  • UAL Film Files Society (Chelsea College of Arts & Design, University of the Arts London)
    United Kingdom
    May 25, 2022
  • Deptford Cinema x Hither Green: Community Cinema Screening
    Hither Green, South East London
    United Kingdom
    June 11, 2022
  • Barnes Film Festival
    Barnes, South West London
    United Kingdom
    June 16, 2022
    Regional BIFA-Qualifying Festival
  • Kingston International Film Festival (KIFF)
    Kingston, South West London
    United Kingdom
    June 24, 2022
  • St. Albans Film Festival
    St. Albans, Hertfordshire
    United Kingdom
    July 7, 2022
  • Brighton Rocks Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    July 22, 2022
    Honorable Mention: Best Student Film
  • Freewheeling Film Awards
    United Kingdom
    July 30, 2022
    Nominee: Best Documentary Short
  • Festival del Cinema di Cefalù
    August 1, 2022
  • Thurrock Film Festival
    Grays, Essex
    United Kingdom
    August 26, 2022
  • Liverpool Underground Film Festival
    Liverpool, Merseyside
    United Kingdom
    August 30, 2022
  • Encounters Film Festival (28th Edition)
    United Kingdom
    September 28, 2022
    Academy Award Qualifying / BAFTA-Qualifying / European Film Award Qualifying
  • Independent Festival Art Club at Cine Aleka
    United Kingdom
    October 3, 2022
    Semi Finalist: Audience Award
  • London International Monthly Film Festival
    Homerton, North London
    United Kingdom
    January 2, 2023
    Honorable Mention: Best Documentary
Distribution Information
  • Studio Holder
    Country: Worldwide
    Rights: All Rights
Director Biography - Louis Holder

A graduate from the world-renowned Film BA (Hons) course at University of Westminster, Louis is an RTS Award-Winning Filmmaker, whose work has featured at numerous film festivals including BFI Future Film Festival, London Short Film Festival (LSFF), Raindance and UCL Festival of the Moving Image (FoMI). In 2021, he graduated from the MA Editing & Post-Production Course at London South Bank University and is an upcoming Assistant Editor entrant within Film. He has also volunteered for a wide-range of youth screening collectives and community cinemas including award-winning organisations - Westminster Film Society, which he was president of, and Deptford Cinema. Louis is also the Creative Director of Studio Holder, an independent film company integrating post-production, independent film distribution and media education with a focus on contemporary & emergent media. He is a DaVinci Resolve 17 Certified User and is currently taking the Avid Media Composer Certified User (101 & 110) qualifications. Alongside work and many hobbies - he is working towards realising his feature-length documentary debut; Old Suffolk Boy and is directing a spiritual follow-up to the Cinema Now project - 'centred around theatres, their individual and collective interiority and the horror that lies beneath'.

Recent Editorial / Film Credits include: 'Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love' (for BBC) (2019), Three (2022), Hunger (2022), Isabelle(s) (2022), The Long Sleep of Men (2021), Gabriela (2020), Chook Awook (2020), Voyager (2020), Oh Me Lads (2019), Old Suffolk Boys (2018).

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

What does it feel like to yearn for (the) cinema?

There are a lot of things I want to say with and to (the) State of Cinema. One of the quietly recurring thoughts I’ve had over the course of the pandemic so far has been how to find a way to convey my feelings towards the way that ‘cinema’, both in the literal and macrocosmic senses, have been treated this entire time. The scattering of these filmic meccas which embody and empower so many in their respective communities throughout London are at real risk of long-term or even permanent closure with unknown consequences as to who or what will pick up the pieces - if anything.

These buildings (once home to many a datenight, mates-night and party pre-covid) now take the form of towering, lumbering monoliths nested amongst houses, flats, shops and restaurants - many of which have also faced terrible hardship. What more is there to say about the state of cinema as it is now than by looking (and listening to) these places of film worship. Notice the stillness, silence and deafness of it all. How deaf has society and the government (of course) been to allow the prolonged crippling of the Arts in this way, without providing a substantial and compassionate lifeline to them. We’re not speaking in purely monetary terms here either. No plausible or even sustainable roadmap has ever been issued this entire pandemic by the government to either theatres, music venues or cinemas - and this pain is felt every day by those who are responsible for maintaining the nuts-and-bolts existence of these precious social outlets that we civilians have also somehow become numbed to.
So let us remind people of that.