South Bank London

BFI Southbank

This world-renowned film centre with four first-class screens is a film lover's paradise.

Opening Hours

Box office: daily 11am–8:45pm
Reuben Library: Tue–Sat 11am–7pm 
BFI Mediatheque: Tue–Sun 11am–9pm
BFI Riverfront Bar & Kitchen: Mon–Thu 10am–11pm, Fri, Sat 10am–12am, Sun 11am–10pm 
BFI Cafe: daily 11am–8pm

Contact Info

BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road, London, UK

A world-renowned cinema and film centre devoted to the cinematic arts, this is the place to come to see the latest arthouse previews, hear famous directors and actors discussing their films and catch re-screenings of classic films from yesteryear. 

Every month the cinema hosts themed seasons devoted to different directors, actors, film-eras, genres or subject matters, debuts brand-new films and brings back decades-old favourites as part of their regular Big Screen Classics series. Other regular series include the Fun-day Sunday family screenings and a monthly Silent Cinema event with live musical accompaniment.

The BFI hosts several major film festivals every year: The BFI Flare Festival devoted to new LGBTQI+ cinema, the BFI Future Film Festival which showcases new work by emerging British filmmakers and the huge BFI London Film Festival in October where the biggest new British and international films make their red carpet debuts.

Of the cinema’s four state-of-the-art screens, the 450-seater 9.2-metre-wide NFT-1 is the most famous and especially atmospheric when it fills up for opening night previews.

Explore the BFI Archives

Cinema screenings aren't the only things to enjoy at BFI Southbank. At the BFI Mediatheque you can take a seat, put on a headset and explore recordings from the BFI’s vast film archive. You can view over 95,000 titles from the BFI National Archive including everything from early feature films and documentaries, to classic TV shows and news reels. It's one of the world’s most important and diverse collections of film and television and costs nothing to use!

There's also the BFI Reuben Library that holds the world’s largest collection of books, journals and digitised material about film, television and the moving image. The library is also free to access, although its recommended to book a study place to sit at online in advance as space is limited. The library has state-of-the-art scanning facilities and an easy-to-use database to point you in the right direction if needed and is also completely free to access.

BFI Southbank Cafe, bars and gift shop

The BFI Southbank has an excellent gift shop stacked with BLU-RAY classics including numerous hard-to-find films, scores of books on all things film and screenwriting, plus lots of quirky film-related gifts such as posters, greeting cards and even socks.

There are also several café-bars to hang out in. The BFI Riverfront which looks onto the Book Market on the Queen’s Walk is a particularly popular meeting spot with a lively bar-restaurant and a great terrace out front. On the other side of the building next to the box office is the buzzing BFI Bar and the BFI Cafe.

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