The London UK Film Focus, the annual showcase for new British Films, launched Monday (June 29) attracting more than 100 international buyers to the capital.

There had been concerns that the recession would lead to a drop in buyers attending this year’s event, held at the British Film Institute, but it has got off to an upbeat start.

Helen MacKenzie, head of international at Film London, said: “We were thinking that we might have a fall-out of buyers but that’s not the case at all. We do have a strong programme this year.”

LUFF opened with the premiere screening of Nick Love’s football hooligan drama, The Firm; while, Julian Fellowes’ From Time To Time, starring Dame Maggie Smith and Timothy Spall, will have its premiere screening on Wednesday (July 1).

Other premieres including comedy Beyond The Pole, a documentary about the first carbon neutral, organic and vegetarian trek to the North Pole, Debbie Isitt’s festive comedy Nativity, and Nick Cohen’s horror-drama The Reeds.

The programme also includes “footage” screenings of some much hyped new British titles, including Nick Moran’s The Kid, starring Rupert Friend, Bernard Rose’s Mr Nice, based on Howard Marks’ autobiography, Simon Fellows’ horror Malice In Wonderland and Stuart Hazeldine’s drama Exam.

Around $3m (£1.8m) in sales is expected to be generated through the four day event.

Now in its sixth year, LUFF is backed by Film London, the UK Film Council, the BFI, Film Export UK, UK Trade & Investment and the London Development Agency.