Film fans will be delighted to hear that The Yorkshire Times will be running live online coverage of the 18th Bradford International Film Festival, which kicked off last night with a screening of musical comedy Damsels in Distress. "BIFF", as the festival is known, is a celebration of the enormous breadth and depth of film cultures across the world, as well as a recognition of some of the UK's best home grown talent. I am flattered to have been asked to run a live feed of the event, with schedule reminders, film recommendations, and opinions on as many screenings as I can get to.

This year's highlights include tributes to Brit favourites Barbara Windsor and Ray Winstone, with screenings many of their most popular films such as Windsor's classic comedy Carry on Spying and Winstone's violent 1979 hit Scum. Barbara Windsor will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award and will take part in a "Screentalk" event on Friday 20th at 7:30pm before a screening of Joan Littlewood's Sparrers Can't Sing, for which she was nominated for a BAFTA.

There will also be an ongoing tribute to legendary animator Chuck Jones (who would have turned 100 this year), much loved among animation fans for producing the very best Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons, and many of his classic shorts will be played before the film screenings, featuring Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and countless other favourites.

Film fans can also look forward to the Shine Shorts Competition, and there will be several opportunities to catch the shorts throughout the week and pick your favourites before the awards presentation on Sunday night.

The variety of screenings is strong as ever, with some exciting new voices from European cinema, horror classics from legendary British studio Hammer, documentaries about film and much more.

Finally, the weekend of Friday 27th to Sunday 29th of April will round everything off with the Widescreen Weekend, a loving tribute to the wonderful world of Cinerama, the legendary "curved screen" technology of the 1950s and 1960s that promised audiences something bigger and more opulent than anyone had seen before. This is a technology that today's flat screens just can't do justice and seeing classics such as How The West Was Won and The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm recreated at Bradford's Pictureville cinema will surely be a sight to behold.