CINÉ-REAL began in 2011 in East London, after Liam Saint-Pierre found an old super 8 projector lying in a bin. Seeing this as a sign from the cinematic gods he wiped off the used teabags and banana peel and carried it home. The projector looked in good condition, but Liam couldn’t get it to work. He remembered there was a shop in Hackney called Umit & Son that specialised in super 8 and 16mm film projection.  The shop was run by Umit Mesut, a passionate, friendly, life long film fanatic. As Umit worked on the projector (free of charge) they talked about the beauty of celluloid and bemoaned the lack of places to watch film as film. Inspired Liam decided to set up CINÉ-REAL, a not-for-profit film club with the aim of bringing filmmakers and cineastes together, to enjoy a classic celluloid experience, along with promoting collaboration and discussion.

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Umit was asked to be the projectionist, but, unsure of the commitment, declined the offer. Undeterred Liam bought a 16mm projector and managed to get hold of a 16mm print of Jaws. The first screening  in a small gallery attended by friends did not go to plan. Liam had problems changing the reels, dealing with jumping splices and warbling sound, and though the audience were accommodating (entertaining each other with games of charades whilst Liam battled on), it was not a great success. The next day he returned to the shop and after a bit of persuading Umit agreed to come to the next screening as a kind of projectionist’s mentor. Despite his initial resistance, Umit loved the night. It still gave him a buzz to lace up the old projector and watch the warm glow of celluloid fill the big screen. He was excited by how many people were still interested in film and shared his passion. Since then Umit has been the regular projectionist at CINÉ-REAL where Liam and Umit have shown a 16mm film once a month for the past two years. The current venue is The Russet, in Hackney.

umit lensLiam is an award winning director working in film and digital mediums. Umit continues to buy and sell everything celluloid and cine related from his shop in Hackney, East London.

Liam Saint-PierrePhotograph by Chris Tang


Jocks & Nerds

jocks and nerds

Elle Macpherson

Elle Mcphearson cine-real


Independent London


Independent Cinema Culture in London by Nina Gusway

Going The Way of the Dodo, Hackney Citizen, by Timothy Cooke

Film: Prepare to be charmed! This eccentric Londoner collects old analog film by Maisie Skidmore

Floating Cinema Screening

For more information, or if you would like to get involved with CINÉ-REAL please contact:info@cine-real.com

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