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Kids written off by society scoop Salford fest Awards

A short film scripted by and starring marginalised young people from Salford has won the Salford Film Festival Award, beating off competition from professional film makers from all over the North West.

Cloud 8.5, a bizarre but brilliant drama featuring God, the Devil and inmates in a holy jail, was the first film ever made by the group of socially excluded 16-18 year olds who had never been near a movie camera before. The film was co-produced by RipRoar Productions and Creative Industries In Salford (CRIIS), and funded by Positive Activities for Young People (PAYP).

Kate Taylor, a member of the four person jury which ranked the film first, praised Cloud 8.5 for its originality and imagination. She said:

"The script was fantastic, the timing and performances were great, it was cinematic in its ambitions and it was very funny. We were particularly impressed that the film also came out of a participatory community project."

Legendary Coronation Street creator, Tony Warren, who attended the screening of Cloud 8.5, also acclaimed the cast as "the future creative talent of Salford".

The Salford Film Festival Award, sponsored by Reel North, Channel M’s short film showcase, was presented at a special ceremony to close the third Salford Film Festival.

Runner up for the Award was Hello Fritz, Fancy A Cup of Tea ? a superb documentary about Manchester City keeper, Bert Trautmann, made by Masters students at the University of Salford.

The jury also gave Special Mentions to Jog, a film shot in Stockport about a man running from his hell-ish past experiences, and Mr John, a film about an agoraphobic tv critic who gets his life lashed when neighbour, Nicola Stephenson, barges into his flat…

This year, the Salford Film Festival again attracted a wide cross-section of people to see a wide cross section of films, ranging from documentaries on gurning and football, to the World Premiere of feature film The Truth, to the latest work from Salford’s ever expanding community-inspired movie industry. The film Storm Over Asia, banned in the city for 75 years for fear of inciting riots, was also shown with no reported violent incidents in its aftermath…

The full results for the Salford Film Festival Award are as follows:

Winner: Cloud 8.5 (RipRoar Productions and CRIIS)
Runner Up: Hello Fritz, Fancy A Cup of Tea ? (Dir: Tom Harrington)
Special Mention: Jog (Dir: Dave Hartill)
Mr John (Dir: Julian Kerridge)

The Salford Film Festival Award Jury consisted of Kate Taylor (Northern Film Network), Paul Barron (Reel North), Steve Balshaw (independent film critic) and Faisal Qureshi (independent film director).

The Co-Producers of CLOUD 8.5 were delighted with the Award. Alison Surtees of CRIIS said:

"We’re thrilled to bits and couldn’t have hoped for a better result. This film was made on a low budget by kids who have been written off by the system, who have no cinematic background at all and who were competing against people who make films on a regular basis."

Mat Johns and Stephen Horsfield of RipRoar Productions added:

"This film showcases the incredible talent that the youth of Salford have – and what they can achieve if given the opportunity."

CLOUD 8.5 (CRIIS and RipRoar Productions, Salford)

A remarkable film made by young people supported by Positive Activities for Young People (PAYP) and Creative Industry In Salford (CRIIS). This short drama surrounds two prisoners in a holy jail, swapping stories of how they ended up there. One prisoner’s story turns out to be all the more remarkable than the others…Cloud 8.5 incorporates touches of wit and fantastic action scenes into a superb script – written entirely by the young people taking part.

This year’s Salford Film Festival was sponsored by Countryside Properties, supported by Creative Industries In Salford, and guest curated by the Commonwealth Film Association. It took place at the Red Cinema in beautiful Salford Quays.


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