Budding filmmakers make a mark at awards

Film & Television School Wales (FTSW) Schools and Colleges Awards. July 2019. Neil Gibson

The winners in the Film & Television School Wales Schools and Colleges Awards.

The story of a young soldier killed in the First World War, the crucial role pigeons played in wartime, and the life of miners, were just some of the subjects of movies made for to this year’s Film & Television School Wales (FTSW) Schools and Colleges Awards.

The competition saw young filmmakers from across Wales and the west of England showcasing their talents for the honour of scooping the top prizes in seven categories, including Best Film, Most Innovative Use of Film – with 11-15 and 16-19 categories - Rising Star, Best Film Review, and Film Ambassador.

The competition was organised by FTSW, which is based at the Cardiff Campus of the University of South Wales (USW), which is the home to the university’s Creative Industries Faculty.

The winner of the 11-15 category in Best Film was Bedwas High School, which focused on the story of GW Hirst, a local hero who died in WWI. It was made by year 9 pupils and has since had more than 3,000 views online and featured in the local press.

In the Best Film 16-19 category, the film Unlikely Heroes, created by the BFI Film Academy at MediaActive, took the top award, with an animated documentary that used experimental animation techniques to highlight the crucial role messenger pigeons played in wartime.

The Most Innovative Use of Film 11-15 category saw Meadows Primary School win with A Miner's Story, which focused on first-hand accounts from pitmen and helped bring to life the school's heritage project about local industry.

In the 16-19 age group for the Most Innovative Use of Film, Having a Ball by Belinda Humphries won for a video focusing on the Bristol millennium dome's journey around the city.

In other categories, the Rising Star Award was given to Hedydd Ioan, and the Best Film Review was won by Owain Carbis, who will be studying for a BA in Cinema at USW from September. Paula Treweek of Lewis School, Pengam, was named as Film Ambassador.

Tom Ware, Director in Production and Performance at USW, said: “The Schools and Colleges Awards highlight the incredible depth of talent amongst young filmmakers in Wales and the west of England.

“We had nearly 100 entries of an impressively high standard, showcasing a huge range of skills among the next generation of creative filmmakers.

“Although there could be one winner in each category, every entry showed the imagination and drive needed to begin a career in this booming creative sector.

“I’m sure many of our winners will be leading lights in the industry in years to come.”


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