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London River - A film by Rachid Bouchareb

London River still

Set against the backdrop of the 7th July 2005 bombings, London River tells the story of a friendship which develops between two seemingly unconnected people - Elizabeth (Brenda Bleythn) and Ousmane (Sotigui Kouyate).  Both of them have come to London to search for their children who are missing in the aftermath of the bombings.

Although they come from different religious backgrounds - Ousmane is an African Muslim living in France and Elizabeth is a white Christian living in Guernsey, they share the same hope of finding their children alive. Putting aside their cultural differences, they give each other the strength to continue the search and maintain their faith in humanity.


Hush Your Mouth - release on DVD this month


Stars Jason Maza, Samuel Oatley, Jay Simpson, Jade Williams, Ruth Sheen, Coshti Dowden | Written byTom Tyrwhitt UK certification 15 | UK RRP £19.99 | DVD Region 2 | Runtime 98 minutes | Directed byTom Tyrwhitt

When Darren decides that enough is enough and threatens to speak out against what his fellow gang members are doing, he is killed. His younger brother Leo (Maza) is grief-stricken and struggles to cope, without a job and without much of a home life. Suspicion for Darren's death falls on Leo's friend Isaiah (Dowden) but evidence slowly begins to point the finger at someone else.



Palme d’Or nominee Ben Crowe debut feature starts shooting

The coming of age drama is the Short Film Palme D’Or nominee’s first feature length film.

Shooting is underway on British director Ben Crowe’s debut feature Verity’s Summer, a coming of age drama set in the North East of England.

Crowe, who was nominated for the Cannes Short Film Palme D’Or for The Man Who Met Himself in 2005, also wrote the script for the feature about a young woman’s journey from the security of childhood to the compromises of adulthood.

The film, which is shooting for four weeks on the UK’s Northumberland Coast, stars newcomer Indea Barbe-Willson (pictured) as Verity.

Emma Biggins of Portsmouth based Multistory Films is producing the film, which is being financed by private equity. Christine Hartland, who produced 2009 thriller W.M.D, is executive producing through her London based company Patchwork Productions.


Help save an important part of cinema history!

Whilst the recent history of modern cinema and filmmaking has been dominated by new technologies and innovative ways of production and distribution, filmmakers are still making productive use of more archaic modes of technology. Filmmaking collectives such as EXP24 celebrate the sheer physicality of actual celluloid whilst the artistic aesthetics of such people as the artist / filmmaker Ben Rivers have are in a large part supported by the medium on which the film is made.

Unfortunately Eastman Kodak have decided to discontinue 7265 Black & White Reversal and 7231 Black & White Negative camera stocks. As a petition to save the stock states:

"7265 and 7231 are valuable tools used by the independent filmmaking community and educators across the United States, Canada, and Europe. Shooting on 7265 and 7231 offers students and independent filmmakers the aesthetic beauty of a low speed black & white camera stock at a lower cost compared to color. When pull processed, 7231 has a wider dynamic range and finer grain, making it a remarkably versatile stock for outdoor shooting in high contrast situations."

So, if you want to keep diversity if filmmaking, go to the petition below and show your support:

And please pass on the plea to anyone else you know!


FilmClub Research finds childhood filmgoing paterns continue throughout life

An Ipsos MORI survey commissioned by the organisation FILMCLUB has found that people who watched films regularly as children visit the cinema more often as adults than those that did not.

Respondents who went to the cinema at least once every few months as a child or teenager are three times as likely to go to the cinema at least once every few months now than those who did not. Results show that:

·       55% of respondents that went to the cinema at least once every few months as a child still go that often, compared to 17% of those that never went to the cinema.

·       42% of respondents that went to the cinema at least once every few months as a teenager still go that often, compared to 12% of those that never went to the cinema.

Watching films on television from an early age also significantly increases cinema attendance later in life, with these respondents being approximately twice as likely to go to the cinema:

·       48% of the respondents who watched films on TV as a child go to the cinema at least every few months or more, compared to 20% who did not.


Whitby in Shorts 5 - 22nd May 09

WHITBY COLISEUM (contact tel: 01947 825000 - email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Friday 22nd May 2009, 7.30pm

Fifth in the monthly series of locally made short-films, "WHITBY IN SHORTS[5]" follows the hugely successful previous events with another entertaining and diverting programme, plus a special guest appearance of Dominic Windram's back-projection poetic performance piece "Artificial Eden". (Visit for further details).

If you have made a short film in the Whitby/NYM/Esk Valley/Cleveland region, and would like to see it screened at "WHITBY IN SHORTS", please contact the organisers through the website.

We are delighted to announce that the "Whitby in Shorts" International Short-Film Festival(WiSiS-FF, pronounced "wississiffi") will be taking place from 5th to 13th September this year. Full details on the website. Please give us your support and join us there!


Whitby in Shorts, part IV

At WHITBY COLISEUM (contact tel: 01947 825000 - email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Friday 17th April 2009, 7.30pm
£5, Under18s £2.50

Fourth in the monthly series of locally made short-films, "WHITBY IN SHORTS[4]" follows the hugely successful previous events with another excellent and engaging programme. (Visit for further details.


Biju viswanath's new feature film Marathon

"Marathon displays the resolve, discipline and courage of two human beings running for their lives, qualities that can sustain us all in life's marathon."

marathon2.jpgAcclaimed director, Biju Viswanath, featured previously here on Netribution, writes in with news of his adaptation of Richard Harteis' non-fiction work, Marathon. With a screenplay by Celia de Fréine, Marathon is a tale of courage, endurance, and finally, the triumph of love.

Marathon explores the relationship between Richard Harteis and William Meredith, former US Poet Laureate and winner of every major American award for poetry including the 1988 Pulitzer Prize. 

In the 17th year of their friendship, William sustains a debilitating stroke. Richard stands by his partner, fighting for the right to care for him, despite the inevitable restrictions on his own life, and against the wishes of William's family. Though the path they have chosen is not an easy one, their love and compassion see them through days of illness, therapy, and healing.



A New Kind of Movie Viral That's ‘Daylight Robbery’

From Rachel Devenport:

A new viral from the makers of British gangster film Daylight Robbery has been launched online  at

The cast and crew of the film teamed up with creative digital agency Silence to produce a personalised short which asks for viewers to sign up their friends to take part in the criminal gangs' next bank job. 


News from India : Dyke, Culture, Strike, Darfur and Lynch

So I arrived in Mumbai on the coldest day there in 46 years. It gave me a brief sense of bravado, strutting around saying, 'but it's scorching' as locals shivered in the 13 C dusk. The strutting didn't last long after I left my passport in one of the city's 55,000 taxis. Five hours and 32km later it turns up, making my first day feel at once both the unluckiest and most fortunate.

Actually the taxi ride to the airport (which I took three times that day) makes it clear just how lucky I am. Two weeks on, from the seclusion of a Goan beach I have become used to it, but still the poverty makes anything I've seen before pale into insignificance. Words do little justice, while filming seems gawkish, but the single image of a child, perhaps two years old, sitting in its own excrement while eating from the pavement, just opposite the gothic grandeur of CST, Asia's busiest train station, is forever burnt in my mind. In many ways it feels like the rest of the trip is about figuring out what I can do.

In the meantime, here's some of the film and culture news I've noticed since I've been here.

Some encouraging news, first off, with the announcement that Greg 'BBC Superstar' Dyke is to take over from Anthoney MInghella as chair at the BFI. Why so good, other than his general energy and inspiring leadership, you ask? Well, at the BBC he initiated a project - the Creative Archive - which sought to put the full BBC archive of programmes, news, audio and so forth online and into the hands of the British public (who had funded them) to use for any non-commercial purpose. Obviously the idea terrified the media majors - it would have made the BBC the biggest provider of free quality video in the world, and perhaps triggered a creative renaissance as people started rediscovering, remixing and reworking long forgotten gems. One conspiratorial bod suggested to me that this was the real reason it was so easy for him to be forced out of the job , he was forced out of the job at the BBC. Either way, after leaving, the project was mothballed, but it seems he is now to redirect that energy onto the BFI archive, one he describes as the best in the world. It couldn't have come at a better time, with a recent 25m (can't find the pound sign) government investment into the archive , offering great hope for putting . Having just finished the first phase of an online archive project for Contemporary Films (the UK's longest running indie distributor), and seen how much Brewster Kahle has achieved with on donations alone to suggest that the money would amply get the public domain parts of the archive online, and perhaps cover rights clearances on some of the rest as well. Film students, VJs, experimental artists, researchers, documentarians... watch this space.

Following on from the double whammy death blow of the Arts Council's slashing of support for hundreds of essential small theatres, galleries, festivals and arts organisations, and the possibly closure of the British Council's arts departments -  comes the (brilliant) news that the Department of Children Schools and Families wants young people to receive five hours of quality cultural experiences a week. They will also be encouraged to look at creative careers . My work with TAG Theatre proved to me how positive the impact of live arts could be on young people, and it's great that the government has finally recognised this. But the plans - which will see children in 10 pilot areas taken to galleries, theatres and museums, runs so contrarily to the Arts Council's catastrophic actions where acclaimed theatre in education groups like London Bubble have had their funding 100% cut and face closure. Harrogate Theatre, where I saw countless breathtaking plays as a child, not to mention acted and directed there, has had its 400k grant slashed to 150k , threatening all in-house shows. 

And 'the Strike' finally ended, just in time for the Oscars, after an astonishingly successful and impacting 100 days . From across the pond it was really something to see Letterman and Leno forced off the air by strikers, in the world capital of capitalism (tho both were early pioneers with the Comedy Store strikes in '79). Writers voted overwhelmingly (92.5%) in favour of the deal which will see a WGA writer of any high-budget programme earning around $1400 - $1600 a year for each ad-supported streamed webisode (up from nil). High budget is defined as costing more than the lower of $15,000 a minute, $300,000 an episode or $500,000 a series.

And Spielberg's quit the Chinese Olympics as adviser in protest over Chinese influence (or lack of it) in Darfur. It's refreshing to see some Hollywood action over likely ethnic cleansing during the atrocity rather than many years later -  Rwanda's horrors took place around the same time that Schindler's List was released, Sudan's problems began around the time that Hotel Rwanda came out. 

What else? Well you probably know about the French coup d'etat at the BAFTAs Wink (I'm a traveller now, so use emoticons in otherwise polite conversation), and Brazil taking the Golden Bear at Berlin. The media could be on the brink of acting like adults over Britney , Film London has a fantastic-looking new entrant scheme , the BBC is joining iTunes and the last screening at Swansea's La Charrette cinema will be the world premiere of Danny Boyle's segment of the shelved Alien Love Triangle .

beatlesmaharishi.jpgSomeone else trekking to India in recent days was David Lynch, for the funeral of Transcendental Meditation founder, the Maharishi. Best known for influencing western pop music forever following his brief training of The Beatles in Transcendental Meditation around the White Album period, the Maharishi was a controversial figure, amassing millions as eastern philosophy and practices first began to be explored and embraced by the west.

Which reminds me, I'm a few steps from sun, sand and sea, and instead hunch over this machine embedding hyper-links like a junkie. Oh well, old habits die hard, I guess.