Hayling would-be Spielberg set to make own film

Lewis Walsh wants to make a film after being inspired by the book Looking for Alaska. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142564-4)
Lewis Walsh wants to make a film after being inspired by the book Looking for Alaska. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142564-4)
Picture: Malcolm Wells

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YOUNG Lewis Walsh has one dream – he wants to be the next Steven Spielberg.

And now you can help make the 15-year-old’s wish come true.

Lewis created his own amateur film company after reading the book Looking for Alaska by John Green.

The Portsmouth Grammar School film-maker, of Sinah Lane, Hayling Island, was so inspired by the critically-acclaimed teen novel that he set up Victorious Pictures and has begun writing a screen adaptation.

The talented schoolboy hopes to shoot the project alongside taking his GCSEs next year and wrap up production by 2016.

He said: ‘I’ve always enjoyed watching films and I often wondered how they made them. I’ve worked on film sets with another independent film-maker in Hayling, Alastair Harris, who my parents put me in touch with when I was 14.

‘I just finished working on his latest film, The Prison, and became so inspired by Looking for Alaska that I decided to try it out for myself.

‘I’ve been planning and preparing every day over the past two weeks in my spare time and I’m sure it’ll be a bit stressful when I’m back at school but my parents are going to be monitoring my time management and making sure I have a balance between the film, school, and karate.’

Looking for Alaska is set in an American boarding school. John Green’s later book The Fault in Our Stars was made into a film that was a box office hit this summer.

Lewis admits to watching films twice in a row – once for pleasure and the second time to focus on the technicalities of how it was made.

He has put together a campaign on the crowd funding website, Indiegogo, where people can donate cash to the project.

And he is in the process of making donation pages on Sponsume and Kickstarter. On top of directing, he will also act as the project’s producer, writer and manager but is planning to hold open auditions for the cast and crew at Hayling Island Community Centre in October.

He added: ‘I’ve got no funding at the moment and there won’t be any profit for participants as it’s solely for creative purposes. I’m looking for anyone who thinks they can help. In this business you can’t get something without asking, and you might as well try and fail than not try at all.’

Go to facebook.com/LFAvicarious and donate here.