MP is impressed by pupils’ surprise hit
5:30am Tuesday 21st January 2014 in By Mike Benke, @Michael_Benke
YOUNG film-makers from Commonweal School had the opportunity to present their production to the local MP yesterday.
Robert Buckland, representative for South Swindon, was given a special showing of The Surprise Party, which was entirely produced by pupils from the school’s Physical Impairment Unit.
Following the screening, all the youngsters gave the MP a demonstration of the equipment they had used during production.
The film was recently nominated for an award at the National Youth Film Festival and, while it did not win, all the pupils enjoyed a day of glitz and glamour in London.
“I’m very proud of the film and though sadly we didn’t win, it was a fun day,” said student Camilo Perez, 13.
“It was nice to be able to show the film to the MP and I think he found it funny. London was a great day and I enjoyed meeting some celebrities”
The children were involved in every aspect of the film-making process. They wrote the script and acted in it as well being involved in every stage of production, from the camera work to final editing.
The film is a short comedy made in the style of TV show The Office.
Mr Buckland said: “It is a great privilege to come here today to see this film which has been nominated for a national award from hundreds of others around the country.
“The film made me laugh and was very pithy. It was great to see how everyone has come together and shows how important teamwork is.
“This goes to show that these days being disabled is no bar to being able to produce something of such high quality that is recognised nationally.
“It also demonstrates the continued commitment of the staff at Commonweal to the arts in Swindon.”
The children were helped during the production process by Ideal Films Limited with support provided through British Film Institute’s First Light Project.
Keith Phillips, a director at First Light, said: “What’s been great about the whole process is how the children have come to be able to do everything themselves.
“When they were talking to the MP I was able to sit back because they did not need any help. It has been a fantastic process and the children can all be very proud of themselves.
“One of the pupils has now written a great new script so we’re hopefully soon going to be starting work on our next project.”
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