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Pompey fanatic in TV film

John Westwood at Fratton Park and, inset, working in his family bookshop

John Westwood at Fratton Park and, inset, working in his family bookshop

CHANNEL 4 will broadcast a film created by two local filmmakers featuring one of Pompey’s biggest fans.

The Smell of Football is a stark warning to football clubs living beyond their means, and focuses on self-proclaimed ‘super fan’ John Westwood, from Petersfield.

Daniel Musty and Ben Cloud set up Millstream Productions, based in Emsworth, in 2011 and the business has gone from strength-to-strength.

They pitched the idea to Channel 4 last spring and the result is a seven-minute biographical documentary, which will be screened on the channel as part of The Shooting Gallery series just after midnight tonight .

It is about John’s love and passion for Pompey and his fears the club might go under.

It charts a match-day in the life of the man who is a rare book dealer by day but wears a top-hat, rings a bell and blows a bugle at Pompey matches up and down the country.

Daniel, the producer and director, said: ‘I wanted to create a short film which harked back to nostalgic times of being a football supporter, as I remember it.

‘Being taken by your dad and having your senses woken by the smell of football – fried onions, the ink of the programmes, beer and freshly-mown grass. I wanted to create a portrait of what football means to the typical working class fan, rather than the sanitised Sky TV version of football.

‘Technically we produced a cinematic portrait of what it is to be consumed by a passion so great. Pompey encompasses every area of John’s life. I found him to be a misrepresented character and wanted to produce a film which aimed to put this right.

Daniel, 32, said he expects many of the issues within the film to resonate with football supporters up and down the country at a time when many feel misrepresented, alienated and disenchanted.

He added: ‘It has become a corporate cash cow and for many an armchair pastime.

‘The Smell of Football will remind supporters why they love the game.

‘The film presents some of the problems going on at Pompey through the eyes of a supporter and acts as a stark warning to clubs living beyond their means.’

 

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