Founded by the Edinburgh Film Guild in 1947 as the First International Festival of Documentary Films, the Festival was dedicated to providing a platform for films that would have otherwise been overlooked, at a time when Hollywood dominated the industry. The scope of the Festival’s programming expanded through the 1950s to include narrative fiction, and extended to pioneering the retrospective in the 1960s and early 1970s, showcasing work by new talent as well as established filmmakers - something which has since become a standard feature of film festival programming around the world.

Here, in celebration of our landmark 70th anniversary and the Festival’s diverse and longstanding commitment to film as a reflection on and of society, we are delighted to present a specially curated selection of screenings, events and exhibitions.

View all films in the Unlocking the Archives strand here.