Young hopefuls debut films at gala premier
The Strand Film Maker’s Club, sponsored by Hughes Insurance, is celebrating the success of its first year by hosting a gala premier to showcase the work of its budding young film makers, in Northern Ireland’s oldest picture house, The Strand.
24 local students were given the opportunity to take part in the course, led by industry professionals, completely free of charge, to give them a taste of what it’s like to work in the film industry – an increasingly viable career option in Northern Ireland.
The Strand Film Maker’s Club is two one-week summer courses for secondary school students designed to give an insight into the film industry. The initiative is co-funded by Arts and Business and Hughes Insurance in partnership with the Strand Arts Centre and Giga Training. The students worked with industry professionals Giga Training to research, shoot, star, produce, direct and edit their own short films – giving them tangible evidence of their talent.
Managing Director of the Strand Arts Centre Mimi Turtle comments: “We had a great response to the course, double the number of applicants than places – really inspiring. Our aim was to give the students a rare insight into the actual process of film making with an end product they can show to future employers. Investment and development in the film industry right here in Northern Ireland has great potential for our young people to find jobs.”
The film industry in Northern Ireland is thriving and with further investment planned it is understandable why A list actors and major film studios such as HBO, NBC and Universal continue to shoot major productions here. Films such as the Tom Hanks-backed movie City of Ember starring Bill Murray, Good Vibrations – the biopic of Ulster punk guru Terri Hooley and of course Game of Thrones, Sky Atlantic’s most successful fictional series ever, have injected £329m into the local economy and created an estimated 21,000 jobs.
Victoria Minnis from the Hughes Insurance Marketing team comments: “This is the first Arts initiative we have sponsored so it was very exciting to join the students for the premier and see their short films. The local community is very important to us and we’re proud to be part of this unique club that has the potential to give local students a head start for a career in film and TV production. I have to say viewing them on the big screen with the red carpet and the mini Oscar trophies made it feel like the real thing!”
The films created by the students can be viewed on https://vimeo.com/channels/strandfilmmakersclub.
To sign up for next year’s course – If you’re 14-18 years old, passionate / interested in film and live in the Greater/East Belfast area apply online at www.StrandArtsCentre.com or call Giga Training on .