As part of the 55th BFI London Film Festival Education Events, First Light asked young filmmakers aged 15-25 to submit a 30-word pitch for a three minute documentary involving an element of collaboration.
The top 12 entries were selected from over 60 pitches and invited to attend a special London Film Festival Event on Wednesday 26 October where they had 3 minutes to pitch their idea live to a panel of industry judges. The event was chaired by writer and broadcaster Karen Krizanovich and the judges panel included:
BAFTA winner and BBC Director Morgan Mathews
Simon Gilchrist of The Grierson Trust
Emma Cooper, Commissioning Editor for Channel 4 Documentaries
Three young London filmmakers, Michael Osei Austin (19), Corey Samuel (23), and Tahmina Rahman’s (24) won over the panel to secure £2,000 funding, professional kit loan and industry mentoring for a new East London documentary featuring the first black British filmmaker Horace Ové CBE.
Horace Ové is widely acclaimed for his seminal 1976 feature film, Pressure, which was banned for two years. His extensive work catalogues racism and the rise of the black power movement in Britain since the 1970s. The winning trio will use the funding from UK charity First Light to ask the controversial question, Has anything changed?
Fever Pitch winner Michael says:
“We’re really delighted that the panel went for our idea and we can’t wait to get started. As soon as we found out, we phoned Horace Ove to tell him the good news. He’s been an inspiration to us and we’re looking forward to collaborating with him on our short film.”
About the winning trio:
Michael Osei Austin – Director/Team leader
(British African) Age 23
“The true richness of Africa has always been overshadowed by the dark clouds of poverty but whenever it’s been able to reveal its true likeness, it has always given the world the finest of its kind. This is shown in the character played by leading actress Josette Simon in ‘Burning Conviction’ a bio-chemist who is a reflection of the best of Africa.”
Corey Samuel – Camera/DOP
(British Carribean) Age 19
“To quote Trinidadian intellectual and publisher John Le Rose’ in the film made by Horace Ove , ‘A dream to change the World’: ’Those of us who came from the Caribbean did not come to Britain thinking of ourselves as a minority culture, we were a majority there and that viewpoint was firmly placed in our heads when we arrived’”
Tahmina Rahman – Line producer /Art Director
Aged 24, a third-generation British Asian (Bangladeshi)
“I graduated from the University of the Arts in London. I am a freelance photographer at present working as an Art Director. I am very aware that our community has suffered from racist violence, but in 2011, we are confident that the multicultural society is here to stay, and I am proud to call myself a British Bangladeshi, just as Horace is a British Trinidadian.”
Pictured: winning trio Michael, Corey and Tahmina with writer and broadcaster Karen Krizanovich.