Star-studded cast in film maker’s first-ever movie

L-R Jamie Foreman (as character Dog) stood with Wil Johnson (who plays main character Carl Foster
L-R Jamie Foreman (as character Dog) stood with Wil Johnson (who plays main character Carl Foster
James Taylor at his desk in his office at 116 High Street, Old Portsmouth.

Those halcyon days when pen and paper just worked!

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IT was shot in just 18 days on a shoestring budget.

Now Portsmouth amateur filmmaker Nicholas Lean is hoping his first ever movie – which has a cast full of high profile names – will be a major hit on the big screen.

Actor Jamie Foreman, who is best known as Derek Branning in EastEnders, and Waking the Dead star Wil Johnson are some of the stars that appear in psychological thriller Hard Shoulder.

In the film, Mr Johnson plays the part of Carl Foster, who has a mental breakdown after his family is attacked while they are on a weekend holiday.

Jamie Foreman plays the role of a character called Dog who is Mr Foster’s alter-ego.

Actress Jill Greenacre, who has appeared in UK television series Doc Martin, assumes the part of Bones in the film.

Scenes for the movie, which cost Mr Lean just over £225,000 to complete, were filmed at 3 Mills Studios in London.

Filming took place in September 2009 but the process of editing was completed this month.

Mr Lean, of Arundel Street, Landport, managed to land his star actors after contacting numerous casting agencies.

The 44-year-old said: ‘Though it sounds like a lot of money, it’s not a big budget for a film. Anything under £500,000 is regarded as a micro-budget. All the money was donated by people I know, which is amazing.

‘I am absolutely delighted with how the movie turned out, especially as I was running on such a tight schedule as well. Eighteen days to shoot a film isn’t a great deal of time.

‘I’ve played it back so many times. It’s took a lot of time and effort. I’m proud because it’s the first film I’ve ever made. Working with the actors was an amazing experience. They were all top people. Unfortunately I didn’t get to spend a lot of time with Jamie Foreman because we were always darting around the set.’

Mr Lean came up with the idea for his film four years ago. He’s now in talks with film distributors over a cinema and DVD deal.

‘The film is semi-autobiographical,’ he said.

‘The main character Carl ends up going through a really tough time, just like I have done in years gone by.

‘Unfortunately, I’ve lost a lot of people close to me in pursuing my dream to be a filmmaker. I haven’t got a background in film – I’m just passionate about movies. I’m hoping this will lead me to even bigger things.’

Steven Priovolos, director of photography, and associate producer Steven Simmons helped to bring the film together with Mr Lean.