Film makers at The Plains

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Sam Walls, left, oversees senior students Penny Nell (behind camera), Ben Harris, Sam Righton and Emma Page-Dickson as they get to grips with a script destined for the big screen.

Tinwald’s heritage complex, The Plains, is the set and sounding ground this week for five days of film making education and script exploration.

Students at the Summer Drama School, coordinated by Big Little Theatre Company (BLTC) director Jackie Heffernan, have been developing new scripting and acting skills with the big screen in mind.

The summer theatre school aims to extend young actors by introducing them to different aspects of theatre craft and this year’s theme is Let’s Make Movies.

Among the tutors is cinematographer/photographer Sam Walls.

Mr Walls said acting for the screen needed more subtle movements than for the stage.

Students had pitched their own film ideas and had shown great imagination.

They were involved with writing and acting disciplines, while he would focus on filming and editing their work, said Mr Walls.

Other tutors on the programme include former BLTC students Georgie Sivier, Annah Casey-Solly and dance tutor Poppy Donaldson.

Around 50 students were split into groups to brainstorm film plot ideas on Monday.

Those ideas were expanded and presented to tutors and the best ideas chosen to work with.

An avant garde thriller will be developed by the seniors, while all students will have input into the story of a stolen baby who later returns to her family with revenge in mind.

Some students will also work a music and dance video.

All three films will be showcased to parents at a film premiere event at Ashburton Trust Event Centre tomorrow night.