An Evening with Robson Green interviewed by Mark Benton to close TVIFF 2023

Tees Valley Internation Film Festival logo above images of actor Robson Green, a white man in his 50's with friendly smile, and actor Mark Benton, a white man in his 50s.

One of the North East’s best-loved actors is coming to ARC in October to take part in the closing event of this year’s Tees Valley International Film Festival, a four-day celebration of film and creative media. The Festival is returning to ARC for its second year with a packed schedule of celebrity guests, gala screenings and workshops all designed to help develop new actors, writers and filmmakers across Teesside and Darlington.

After arriving on our TV screens in 1989 in the long-running BBC drama Casualty, Robson Green found stardom after his role in ITV series Soldier Soldier. This led to Simon Cowell persuading him and his co-star Jerome Flynn to release a version of Unchained Melody as a single. The song went on to sell over 1.8 million copies and became the biggest-selling single of 1995. Major roles in Wire in the Blood, Waterloo Road and Grantchester followed and made Robson an easy choice for Festival Director, Michael Luke, when it came to selecting a VIP celebrity guest for the headline event.

Darlington born Michael said “Robson was always our first choice for this year’s headline guest. Not just because of his illustrious and longstanding career, but also because stories of his journey to the top of British TV from the streets of the North East will really resonate with people in our area that hope to carve their own path in film and television, and the fact that Robson will be interviewed by his dear friend will add to the huge entertainment that this unique event will bring to all.”

Relishing the chance to connect with his fans and fellow creatives in Teesside, Robson said “I was very fortunate to have Mark show me round some of the hidden gems in Teesside when we filmed Weekend Breaks in Saltburn last year. It was an incredibly joyous and entertaining few days with someone who is still very proud to call this part of the world home and I’m sure the joy and entertainment will flow once again when we’re onstage together at ARC in Stockton.” Also recognising the unique vision of the Tees Valley International Film Festival Robson continued “It’s a fab event that Michael’s built in Teesside and it’s an absolute pleasure to be a part of it”.

Celebrated local actor Mark Benton is back to host the event, after participating in last year’s closing ceremony. Mark is overjoyed to have the opportunity to interview his good friend in front of a live audience in the heart of Teesside. “It’ll be a real pleasure to work alongside Robson again. We’ve acted together many times over the past twenty years and have been firm friends from the start. So to be sharing a stage with Robson in my homeland will make the show even more special.”

Following his experience at the festival last year, Mark couldn’t wait to be more involved with things this year. “I love what the festival is doing for the area. So rest assured, Robson and I are already deep in plans of how we’re going to make the night a wonderful occasion for all that attend”.

Festival Director Michael added “The closing ceremony itself is going to be a broad and varied occasion which, as well as the interview between Robson Green and Mark Benton, will include the presentation of awards to the winning filmmakers that’ve submitted their short films for inclusion in the festival and also the final of Tees Valley’s Got Talent, a monologue competition designed to showcase and reward undiscovered acting talent in Teesside and Darlington. I can think of no better way to end this celebration of creative media in our homeland. We’re in for an absolute treat.”

Tees Valley International Film Festival 2023 runs from Wednesday 25 – Saturday 28 October, offering a range of screenings, talks from recognisable industry figures, and workshops aimed at those looking to launch their own creative careers.

Click here to book your ticket for this year’s TVIFF Closing Ceremony: An Evening with Robson Green, Interviewed by Mark Benton

Click here to see the full line-up of events already announced for this year’s Tees Valley International Film Festival