Meeting Jim is a feature length documentary journey through the lifetime of Jim Haynes, an extraordinary 83-year-old American who grabbed with heart and soul the spirit of the 1960s and continued to carry it throughout his life. The film has its World Premiere at the Edinburgh International Film Festival today 23 June 2018.

Haynes – named the godfather of the social network by The Guardian – established the first paperback bookshop in Britain, co-founded the Traverse Theatre and was a catalyst for the creation of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Since the seventies he has hosted a weekly Sunday dinner in his Paris home, feeding 150,000 strangers from all over the globe in the past 40 years.

The documentary, directed by Ece Ger, was filmed over 45 days in the summer of 2016 and follows the charismatic Haynes from Paris to London and Edinburgh, giving the audience a chance to hear from so many of the former strangers – now friends – whose lives he has impacted over the years. His story is proof that a life based on the good side of humankind is possible.

Haynes has been part of so many cultural milestones in Edinburgh’s history that it makes perfect sense for the premiere to be held here in the Capital – the place he’s made many friends since first arriving in 1958. Following a crowdfunding effort to finance the 75-minute documentary, now everyone will have the opportunity to “Meet Jim” and take inspiration from his astonishing life.

Meeting Jim premieres at Edinburgh International Film Festival, Filmhouse, 23 June 2018 at 5.40pm and shows again tomorrow at Vue Omni Centre, 24 June 2018 at 6.20pm.