Teesside Cyberpunk Convention
7-10 November 2019

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Teesside Cyberpunk Convention, 7-10 November 2019
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What is the Cyberpunk Convention 2019?
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The Cyberpunk Convention 2019 is a four-day international event consisting of screenings, keynote addresses, talks, debates, workshops, markets and dystopian music nights.
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Set in Middlesbrough – with events in Stockton-on-Tees, Hartlepool and Redcar – local, national and international visitors and press will descend on Teesside to debate, discuss, witness, participate and party in all things Cyberpunk in the setting which gave the genre one of its key films – Blade Runner.
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Why Teesside?
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Born in South Shields in 1937, Blade Runner director Ridley Scott’s family moved around the North-East before finally settling down in Greens Beck Road, Hartburn, Stockton-on-Tees where he attended the local Grangefield Grammar School (now The Grangefield Academy).
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On graduation from Grangefield, Scott attended the West Hartlepool College of Art from 1954 to 1958, obtaining a diploma in design before moving to the Royal College of Art in London and developing his reputation as one of the leading film directors of the 20/21 centuries.
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Scott’s 1982 film Blade Runner – often cited as the most important science fiction film ever made – is based upon the 1968 novel ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep’ by Philip K Dick. Although ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep’ is set in San Francisco, Scott’s epic re-sets the story in Los Angeles, but in reality much of the films aesthetic and film-noir atmosphere is based on Scott’s experience of Teesside, in particular the industrial flame stacks of ICI Wilton that became one of cinema’s most iconic images as director Ridley Scott recreated their eerie glow for his dystopian vision of Blade Runner.
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As Scott described himself:
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“There’s a walk from Redcar into Hartlepool. I’d cross a bridge at night, and walk above the steel works. So that’s probably where the opening of Blade Runner comes from.”
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Although Scott’s references to Blade Runner are often only externally referred to as relating to the opening sequences, the entire films atmosphere was influenced directly by the industrial architecture and Northern English weather of Teesside.
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“It always seemed to be rather gloomy and raining, and I’d just think ‘God, this is beautiful’.
What was the true influence of Ridley Scott’s upbringing on Teesside on his own work and that of the subsequent departures in Cyberpunk?
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Why November 2019?
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Two of Cyberpunk’s most notable films, AKIRA and Blade Runner are set in 2019. This is the ideal moment to convene a local, national and international audience in the near future hi-tech dystopian inspiration that is Teesside!
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We will take part in discussions, markets, screenings, lectures, dining and Cosplay in order to examine the history of Cyberpunk and speculate on its future direction.
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Static Trading Ltd, Roscoe Lane, Liverpool, L1 9JD