Day for Night
We are a UK based independent film company working across the film exhibition, distribution and screen translation sectors, occupying a niche position within the UK film industry. We take some of the freshest and most distinctive independent films to wide and diverse audiences across the UK and further afield, with the promotion of cultural diversity and accessibility at the core of our philosophy. We work with filmmakers, distributors, festivals, venues, and audiences, with the central aim of enabling broader access to visual culture through specialist distribution and curatorial projects.
‘Day for Night’ is the term applied to the cinematographic technique used to simulate night scenes by shooting in daylight through the use of filters and under-exposure.
Day for Night was the English title of François Truffaut’s film La Nuit américaine – his tribute to the filmmaking process and love affair with the seventh art. In the film itself, François Truffaut incarnates the role of the director, and his real-life alter ego Jean-Pierre Léaud plays the lead actor in this classic film within a film.
Sonali Joshi, Founder & Director
Sonali has worked across film exhibition and education, distribution and screen translation throughout her career, in the UK, France, Denmark and Asia. She holds a PhD in Cinema Studies (University of Glasgow) and MA in Media & Communications (Goldsmiths, University of London). Her PhD focused on iconic French actor Jean Pierre Léaud and Star Studies.
Sonali first discovered cinema at the spectacular 1930s Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle, being taken to watch classic Indian films there from a young age. However, her real introduction to the seventh art came when she first saw François Truffaut’s Les Quatre Cent Coups as a teenager, the start of a long relationship with French cinema, la Nouvelle Vague and cinema beyond.
Sonali began her career working in the film programming department of Manchester’s vibrant arts centre Cornerhouse (now HOME). She then moved into film distribution, working on various high-profile releases for independent distributors in Paris (Ideale Audience, Les Films du Paradoxe, Hachette Filipacchi), while taking every opportunity to discover the many wonderful arthouse cinemas on offer in the French capital. Following her time in Paris, Sonali went on to set up the foreign language subtitling department of a former leading post-production house in London (IBF).
She established Day for Night in 2006, drawing together her interests and diverse background in film festivals, distribution and screen translation. Whilst based in London, Sonali has spent extended periods working abroad since then – returning to Paris, as well as in Copenhagen and various cities in Asia – drawing from a range of varied cultural experiences and working practices which have strongly informed Day for Night’s philosophy.
Sonali is Artistic Director and Founder of Aperture: Asia & Pacific Film Festival, the only UK film festival covering all of Asia and the only festival to over Oceania, which launched and toured around the UK in 2018. She is also Founder and Director of Nordic-Baltic Film Festival (UK) which completed its 5th edition at the end of 2016 and is currently evolving into a broader ongoing project. Sonali is currently working on a curatorial project on Japanese architecture in film.
Sonali established Day for Night’s distribution division in 2012 as a natural extension of her curatorial work and involvement in numerous specialised film festivals, launching with Aditya Assarat’s Hi-So (Thailand 2010) and Dominga Sotomayor’s Rotterdam Tiger award-winning Thursday Till Sunday (Chile 2012). She has since gone on to represent a diverse range of titles and many award-winning films in the UK and Ireland, including Court (Chaitanya Tamhane, India 2014), Tharlo (Pema Tseden, China 2014), and By the Time it Gets Dark (Anocha Suwichakornpong, Thailand 2016) – with a particular focus on titles sharing a certain sensibility that takes cinema further into new realms and challenges the ‘idea’ of what is cinema (to quote André Bazin!).
Sonali is a highly experienced subtitler and translator, having worked in subtitling in tandem with her work in cinema. She has extensive experience in managing multi-language audio-visual projects, spotting, French>English and English>English/hard-of-hearing subtitling, as well as offering technical and linguistic advice to filmmakers, producers, distributors, festivals and venues.
Sonali regularly participates in international conferences on Cinema Studies. She continues her academic work alongside her professional practice, regularly giving guest lectures on Film Distribution, Film Festival Studies, and Subtitling at various UK universities and abroad, while also regularly introducing screenings and hosting filmmaker Q&As. Sonali has been invited to participate on various film festival juries, including most recently International Film Festival Rotterdam 2018, Leeds International Film Festival 2018, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival 2018, and Five Flavours Film Festival (Warsaw) 2017.
Sonali is currently co-producing her first feature film project, White Gold, directed by Bhutanese filmmaker Jamyang Jamtsho Wangchuk, which was selected for the Open Doors Hub at Locarno Festival 2018, following on from producing a short film by Jamyang Jamtsho Wangchuk, The Open Door (Bhutan 2018) which also premiered at Locarno Festival 2018.
Sonali is currently based between Tokyo, London and Newcastle.