Sunday, July 16, 2006

THIS IS SOLLYWOOD...


SIR LANCELOT’S TWICE A KNIGHT IN WHIT LANE

Fairies, knights, wizards and King Arthur feature in the latest film from the REELmcr team that brought the hilarious community movie Fameless to the big screen and snide DVD market last year…

So King Arthur’s there in his summer home at Ordsall Hall when he receives news that the frivolous Sir Lancelot (Stephen Bowden) has wounded the elderly Sir Gallahad in a mock battle, and shows no remorse for his churlish actions. Lancelot is put into confinement to have time to mull over his disrespect for his elders and the serious repercussions this could have on his bloodline.

Enter Merlin (Umar Ahmed) and the Sprites who weave their magic and transport Lancelot and his faithful yet long suffering Squire (David Wroe) into present day Salford, Whit Lane to be precise, where they meet up with ancestors Larry Lancelot (Graham Cooper) and his dysfunctional family.

Wife, Linda (Rachel Morrison) has left, sick of being his doormat, and the kids have no respect for anyone - Luke’s (John O’Neil) out bothering the old un’s playing bowls, and Lisa’s (Stacey Harcourt) egging Father Milo (John Barrett) on his way to daily worship. Meanwhile, lovely Lilly (Emma Williams) performs in a modern day all female version of the Knights of the Roundtable.

Sir Lancelot and the Squire have a day to put everything right or the hamlet of Salford will be lost forever.

The film, A Knight In Salford, is a beautifully crafted comedy written by Chris Green with a heart and soul brought by the residents of Charlestown and Lower Kersal.

“These films in Salford just get better and better” says Jacqui Carroll of REELmcr “The standard of acting and the comic timing in A Knight In Salford is fantastic – all the leads are non actors and no-one could tell.”

For 13 year old David Wroe, who plays Sir Lancelot’s Squire, making his first film was a top experience.

“We had a real laugh” he says “There are some really funny moments in it, particularly when myself and Sir Lancelot arrive in the future and don’t understand all the new Salford lingo.”

A Knight In Salford premieres at The Lyric Theatre at The Lowry on Tues October 3rd 7:00pm and will be the biggest community film premiere the city has ever seen – everyone in Salford is invited. To get a free ticket phone 0161 226 4487




LIAM’S OASIS


In The World According To Liam Lovelle, Salford becomes a dream setting for a personal nightmare...

Top band, Gomez, have donated a tune for the soundtrack. Cops and Open Doors actor, John Henshaw, gave his time for nothing. And state-of-the-art steady cam equipment developed in Salford and later used in The Da Vinci Code movie and the tv hit, Lost, was employed for the first time on the shoot of this short film with a tiny budget. The World According To Liam Lovelle has cred before it’s even been screened.

Set in the posh bit of the city, the mini movie revolves around a day in the life of Liam Lovelle, a 27 year old hotel night cleaner who gets made redundant. After eight years of loyal service he returns to his empty flat to contemplate his future and how it will affect his dream of meeting a partner. But the change in Liam’s life goes further than the loss of his job – the break up of his daily routine begins to break him. His dreams turn to nightmares.

“Liam has aspergers syndrome, which is on the spectrum of autism” says actor Lewis Marsh, who plays Liam in the film “It’s not autism itself but has many of the elements that make up autism, like communication difficulties, social interaction problems and trouble with imagination – imagining what may happen and imagining how to deal with change.”

All of which made Liam a challenging role for Lewis, who began acting, playing another Liam, in Granada’s Children’s Ward, while still a pupil at Walkden High. Since then he’s worked with the National Youth Theatre and over the last three years has done loads of film and theatre productions, after leaving his full time job as a teacher. Lewis got the role of Liam while reading the book, The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time, which is centred around aspergers syndrome and became the inspiration for the film.

“I loved the book and loved the main character, and it gave me the idea to go away and write The World According To Liam Lovelle” says Simon Powell of Looking Glass Films who scripted and made the film.

“We linked in with Aspirations, the local aspergers syndrome drop-in centre, and spent a whole year researching the subject and asking about the character to make it authentic” he adds “We got the script into a final draft and went looking for help to make it.”

The help came from all over, including top actor John Henshaw, who plays a clairvoyant, and that track from Gomez, as one of the band member’s mums teaches kid who have the syndrome. The final twenty minute film both draws attention to the plight of those who have aspergers and makes for some wildly dramatic moments. Even before it’s premiered there’s talk of developing it into a full feature film.

The World According To Liam Lovelle premieres at the Red Cinema in August and will be shown again at the Salford Film Festival in November. For tickets contact info@fridaynightfilms

For its next production Friday Night Films is working in East Salford and any residents who want to be involved can contact Simon Powell at the same e-mail address.



FH20

You could say that Seedley Road had never seen anything like it, as a sixty foot fountain of water squirted up into the sky and all the kids began to party. But it had. Seedley and Langworthy are apparently hotspots for liberating fire hydrants, the things that fire engines plug into to get water for hoses. This particular hydrant was let off for the shooting of a REEL Salford film, FH2O. And the filming became a community event.

“We let the hydrant off and suddenly about sixty kids turned up all wanting to be in the film” says Rachel Morrison of REEL Salford “We had parents making butties for the firemen. Everyone joined in.”

FH2O was being made to draw attention to the dangers of letting hydrants off, both for those who mess about with them and for those whose houses are burning down. The film, devised through workshops, draws together different stories of people affected by hydrant hacking and aims to get a powerful message across.

“If this doesn’t stop the practice nothing will because we’ve made it with the kids who actually do it” says Rachel “They take the keys off the fire engines, hide them at home and then go out and turn them on. The water pressure in the area drops and everyone is affected. Like, in the film I’m washing my hair and the water just dries up which is a nuisance but it can be a lot more dangerous than that.

“Having said that we’ve done it with humour “she adds “Like there’s a scene where the kids have let the hydrants off and two of the characters drive their car through to get it washed. But it’s also very serious as well. There’s a guy called Frank in it and he’s got no front teeth because the fire hydrant cap blew off and knocked them out.”

The whole film is narrated by a girl called Jo, played by 13 year old Gemma Dunn who also appeared in REEL Salford’s debut live show, Salford:The Musical. Like the other residents who took part in the film she’s seen the hydrants go off in the area.

“People are always setting them off just for a laugh and it stops people getting water for the things they need” she says “My character gets stuck in a burning house and the firemen have no water to put it out.”

After its premiere in September, FH2O - written by Rachel Morrison and Cat Birney in collaboration with Stella Grundy, who also directs - is to be shown by firemen in schools nationwide to spread the message further. It’s also being shown at the Salford Film Festival in November.




SALFORD FILM FESTIVAL 2006

In November the famous, infamous, incredible Salford Film Festival is back for its 4th year and is looking for films to include in its three day programme…short films, feature films, community made films, documentaries, tv programmes, films made on mobile phones, art and music videos…just about anything with a Salford connection.

The Salford Film Festival is unique in that it is a free community based event, drawing thousands of people and world wide publicity. It’s backed by all the City’s megastars – from Christopher Eccleston to Albert Finney to Mike Leigh and Sir Ben Kingsley. Last year its patron was Tony Warren, creator of Coronation Street. If you know of anything that should be included get in touch with the Salford Film Festival now.

Contact Alison Surtees at Creative Industries In Salford (CRIIS) – 01204 862998 or alison@criis.org

*Salford Film Festival is also on the look out for sponsors. If you’ve got a business that wants major movie-related exposure get in touch too.

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