Our Budding Berries Filmmaking Workshops, run by myself (Joe) and Callum from Berry Productions, created a great film called ‘A Time To Change’, about Climate Change with year 3 children from St. Mary Queen of Martyrs in Hull. It has been screening at various film festivals and competitions around the world, even achieving a best short film award in China, so it has been a great success.
However, the main reason for creating this film was for the Close Up Campaign by the Climate Coalition. ‘A Time To Change’ received high praise as being a “particularly creative and inspiring example of youth voices on climate change.” We were invited to London to take part in the Climate Coalition’s close up on climate change event, led by Oxfam, CAFOD and Into Film, and a trip to Westminster to show our film to members of parliament!
Myself, Mrs Monahan and five of the 8-9 year old children who made the film from St. Mary’s, met at Hull train station at the un-Godly hour of 6am to catch the train to the capital. We were kept entertained by games of chess and cards. What a sophisticated group!
From King’s Cross we headed to the tubes to get to the Waterloo Action Centre, where the event was taking place. It is tricky taking one child around the underground let alone five and in rush hour! Luckily we didn’t lose anyone and the kids love hopping from tube to tube!
At the Close Up Campaign event there were a lot of other children of all age ranges in attendance from all over the country, but we had travelled the furthest! The children took part in a great, fun workshop about climate change and learned some interesting facts about our government and how they are the decision makers when it comes to policies regarding our planet. They then made some brilliant animations with Into Film about global warming and the melting polar icecaps.
After lunch we took in the sights of London as we walked to Westminster Abbey. The children loved the hustle and bustle of the London streets, the graffiti artwork and crossing Westminster Bridge and passing Big Ben.
Westminster is such an amazing building so it didn’t matter that we had to wait to get inside. Everyone was enjoying looking at the gargoyles and statues adorning the building and intrigued by the amount of police, security and x-ray scanners!
Inside the Palace of Westminster we all had a great time exploring the corridors and seeing the amazing architecture, paintings and sculptures. The children felt like they were in Hogwarts!
We then showed the film to the group and it was received with a huge applause – they absolutely loved it! Some of the MPs made an appearance to talk to everyone about climate change and what they hoped to do about it. Unfortunately, our MP couldn’t make it, but her assistant promised us that she would visit the school very soon!
It was time to go home, at least our three hour journey back home anyway! All very tired after what was a brilliant day! We’re over the moon with the success of ‘A Time To Change’ and will keep submitting it to festivals and competitions all over the world, in a hope that the message the incredible kids that made it are saying will be heard by all!
Please watch their film and share it with your friends.
As they say themselves:
“People from all over the world must come together and work as one. This is our only home. Trust us, you’ll miss it when it’s gone.”
£114.12 down and an eternal wait of 6 months. It’s festival submission time again! Hooray!
We have just submitted our latest film ‘The Field’ to three film festivals, one in the UK and two in the States.
In the UK we have submitted to the British Independent Film Festival which takes place in Leicester Square in London. The great thing about this festival, and what attracted us to it, is that there are a number of awards presented – not just best film or best director(s) as is usually the case. This festival also has best actor and actress and best young actor and actress. As we have had some pretty amazing performances from both our young and… ahem… ‘older’ actors we thought we’d give it a shot, giving the people who gave us their time for free to work with us a chance for some glory! It also focuses on British, independent talent. There is huge press coverage and, being in the UK, we could easily attend!
In the US we submitted to The San Francisco International Film Festival and the Seattle International Film Festival. The winner of best short film at the San Francisco Festival get’s considered for an Academy Award nomination – far reaching I know, but it would be great to say we were even in this category would be amazing! The Seattle Festival considers our film a feature and has a number of great awards and even cash prizes. Both publicize the hell out of the films involved and both gain a lot of interest from industry specialists and distributors. Our man Ben Wade is in America too, so potentially could get his arse there to represent us!
Of course we are not guaranteed to get into any of these festivals. We could get a big fat rejection and be out of pocket with nothing to show from it. And these are only the first three festivals we’ve gone for – there are a lot more we’ll be submitting to in the next few months so potentially our pockets could be not only empty, but end up sucking us into a black abyss of no return. On the other hand our film could do brilliantly in one or more festivals and pave the way for that feature we’re planning!
Only time will tell. 6 months in fact, as we don’t know if we’ll even get in to the festivals until April next year. So watching this space is a must!