Portsmouth teenagers scoop international film festival award for short about mental health

YOUNG filmmakers have been recognised by an international film festival for creating a short movie about mental health.

Monday, 13th January 2020, 9:44 am
Updated Monday, 13th January 2020, 12:39 pm

Portsmouth-based UK Film Academy submitted their film My Hidden Agenda to the Big Syn International Film Festival, aiming to emphasise the importance of acceptance of mental health issues.

Commended in the Public Service Announcements category, the film focuses on the idea that if younger children are not looked after, their states of mind may affect their future and ability to learn.

The group from UK Film Academy travelled to London to collect their award among other filmmakers who created pieces which portray one or more of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

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Producer Louisa Baxter-Bromley, director of UK Film Academy, said: ‘I am very proud of this award as the students in the classes really wanted to make a film that would make a difference and winning this gives us the platform to discuss what is a real concern for a lot of young people.’

UK Film Academy is an acting and film production group running on Friday evenings at Admiral Lord Nelson School in Copnor, giving budding actors and young filmmakers aged 10 to 18 the opportunity to learn acting skills for screen and technical filmmaking.

Louisa said: ‘I’m quite proud that I’m getting the kids at 14 or 15 up to the level of people who have done media at university.

Some of the UK Film Academy crew - from left, Oakley Loader, Tyler Scott, Ryan Hope and Nat Beverley-Smith

‘It’s good for them because they get to mix with other kids who are like-minded and make friends.’

In March 2019, almost 100 school children from across the area took to the red carpet in Port Solent for the premiere of films they made as part of a project organised by the UK Film Academy.

UK Film Academy is looking for others to join in with making an ongoing internet fictional internet series entitled In My Shoes to help explore the issues faced by young people.

Louisa said: ‘I’m looking for young people who want to do filming, are interested in writing or interested in acting. It’s a good opportunity for local kids to get involved.’

Cast and crew from Portsmouth-based UK Film Academy who won an award at Big Syn International Film Festival for their film My Hidden Agenda which emphasises the importance of acceptance of mental health issues

To get involved visit ukfilmacademy.com or phone 023 9242 4340.