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Congratulations to the winners of our Staffordshire University Filmmaker Fund, Meghan and Kitty! We’re going to give you an insight into what their films are about, and why we chose them as our winners. As documentary filmmakers, we were drawn to the style of Meghan and Kitty’s films. Both of them had based their ideas on compelling and interesting real-life stories, and approached them in a creative way.

For those of you who don’t know, we created the Filmmaker Fund to support the young talent at Staffordshire University as they completed their final year film project. We worked closely with the alumni department at the university to organise the competition and gather entries from the film students. We were blown away by the quality of the proposals and wealth of creative ideas. After careful consideration, these are the winners we chose and why their ideas stood out…

The winner of the £300 bursary was Meghan. Her film, Irma, is based on a veteran called Paul Wilkie who suffers from PTSD. He came across a charity called Bravehound which helps to support former servicemen and women, who paired him with Irma, their first trained companion dog. This idea really stood out to us because we have worked a lot in the mental health field, and it’s a topic that we’re passionate about. (Plus we love dogs, so that was definitely a bonus!)

Our second winner, receiving a £200 bursary, was Kitty. Her film is an exploration of the Sri Lankan civil war, but using food as a visual element to retell the story. We love how creative she was in her approach to the topic, and this really compelled us to choose her as one of our winners. As filmmakers with a strong history of documentary film making, at Inspired we know it’s important to have a good story but it’s equally important to tell it in the right way. It is so important to engage with the viewer to make sure that your message, whatever that message is, is successfully conveyed.

So, there you have it, that’s why we chose these two very talented young filmmakers as the winners of our Filmmaker Fund! However, don’t be deceived…next year we could look for something completely different. (We don’t want to give it all away!)

We created the fund to help nurture the local young talent, as we realise the importance of showing them the vibrant film industry in Stoke-on-Trent. (Actually, most of the film crew at Inspired are Staffs uni graduates, so we know how much talent comes from there!) We had a great time choosing our winners, getting to know them and chatting about their films. We can’t wait to see the array of talent next year, and look forward to hearing all of the fresh ideas.