Join us at Festival Lounge for more than just fabulous films 


This year, the MQFF Festival Lounge takes over Optic Kitchen + Bar at ACMI Entry Level for the duration of the festival. We'll be serving with delicious meals, quick snacks and great Grinders coffee. You can also enjoy a beer from Mountain Goat Brewery or a glass of wine from the large selection that Optic Kitchen + Bar has to offer. 

Drop in for a quick hello, talk film for hours with friends or find a comfy seat and soak up the atmosphere. There are also more special events taking place in the lounge than ever before. From Friday and Saturday night DJs, to gay bingo, brunch-a-thons and more - not getting amongst it all would be absolutely criminal!

If you need a break from the cinema, there’s always something (or someone!) else to pique your interest in the Festival Lounge!
 

Optic Kitchen + Bar Festival Lounge Opening Hours

 

Wednesday - Saturday: 8am - 1am

Sunday - Tuesday: 8am - 11pm

 

MQFF Members get 15% off food and drinks!

 

Festival Lounge DJs

Free

Each Friday and Saturday night, the Festival Lounge will be graced with a different DJ each night, featuring Featuring Leather Locklear, Hysteric, Sailor V and DJ SugaCain.

Friday 14 March, Saturday 15 March, Friday 21 March & Saturday 22 March

11pm – 1am

 

Sunday Session

Free Entertainment

Together with your friends or alone, come on down to the Festival Lounge pre-film for some lunch or brunch (depending on how your night before went) and be serenaded by our fabulous musicians.  Each session will have two sets, so come check out one or both depending on your film schedule.

Ladies Who Lunch featuring the seductive tones of Caity Fowler

Sunday 16 March

11:30am -12:30pm

 

#PugInterns Photo Opportunity

Free

Our dedicated pug office interns will be gracing the Festival with their presence for one afternoon only. Have your photo taken with one of these little fellas and share it on social media to see if we can break the internet with their cuteness.

Saturday 15 March  

3:30pm – 4:30pm (MQFF Info Desk, ACMI Entry Level)

 

MQFF SPEED DATING

$15 Full / $13 MQFF Members (Tickets are limited so first in, best dressed!)

Looking for a special someone to share a film and a box of popcorn? MQFF is here to help. Our fabulous host Kitty Bang will be on hand to keep proceedings moving along smoothly as you meet new film-loving friends in a fun, Festival environment.

Please note: Due to the numbers, you may not be able to meet every possible suitor at the session, however we'll encourage you to head up to the lounge afterwards to make your own introductions.  We'll provide pen and paper to take some details down or share the love of digits.

Speed Dating - Lesbian 

Monday 17 March 

6:30pm – 8pm (The Cube, ACMI Downstairs)

Speed Dating - Gay

Monday 17 March 

8:30pm – 10pm (The Cube, ACMI Downstairs)

 

Comedy Night

$15 Full / $13 MQFF Members

A one-hour comedy romp featuring your favourite comedians. Hosted by the fabulous MC Joel Creasey with Lori Bell, Thomas Jaspers, Geraldine Hickey, Geraldine Quinn & Special Guests.

(Please Note: Full line-up to be announced and may change)

Tuesday 18 March 

9:30pm (The Cube, ACMI Downstairs)

 

Bingo Betty

$5 a game / $10 for three (just purchase your games on the night!)

Maureen McGillicuddy (Kyle Minall) & Edith Vale (Thomas Jaspers) have escaped from the retirement home to host a few scandalous boards of bingo. Swing by to play a couple of quick games between films or stay to play all night long.  Exciting prizes.

Wednesday 19 March 

7pm – 9pm

 

GLOBE Fruits & Blend Business Networking Event

Free

Before the film screening of Geography Club, presented by GLOBE, join us in the Festival Lounge for social drink at this month's Fruits & Blend event. Everyone is welcome!

Thursday 20 March 

6:30pm - 8:30pm

 

Priscilla's Drag Race

$19 Full / $16 Concession / $15 MQFF Members (Includes Film Screening)

Come along to the 20th Anniversary screening of The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert in your best Priscilla drag dress-up!.  Before the film starts our special guest judges, Dolly Diamond and Luke Gallagher, will invite the brave and the gorgeous to sashay down the cinema aisle for fame, glory and cheap prizes.

Friday 21 March 

8pm (ACMI, Cinema 1)

 

Queer, Camera, Action!

Queer, Camera, Action! is a MQFF Industry Day that will explore three aspects of queer filmmaking: writing, financing and distribution. Each topic will engage industry panelists who will delve into the issues of writing, financing and distributing queer films including features, television series, documentaries and short films. Shaun Miller (principal of Shaun Miller Lawyers) will moderate each panel session.

All events are free, however as space is limited, it's essential to reserve your free tickets.

Saturday 22 March  From Midday

(The Cube, ACMI Downstairs)

12pm  Writing: The Right Stuff

1pm  Financing: Show Me The Money 

2pm  Distribution: Media Platforms and Audiences

3:30pm  Gen2Gen Community Film Project: Screening + Q&A with the Filmmakers

At the end of this amazing day there will be Film Industry Networking Drinks from 4:30pm - 6:30pm in the Festival Lounge. No need to book a ticket, we'll just see you in the bar!

 

Sunday Session

Free Entertainment

Together with your friends or alone, come on down to the Festival Lounge pre-film for some lunch or brunch (depending on how your night before went) and be serenaded by our fabulous musicians.  Each session will have two sets, so come check out one or both depending on your film schedule.

Teddy Bears Picnic featuring the alluring Adam Roche

Sunday 23 March

12:15pm - 1:15pm

 

Sports Fair Day

Calling all sporty queers! Come meet the friendly people from Team Melbourne and check out what gay sports team you might want to sign up to!

Sunday 23 March

1:30pm - 3:30pm