University of Northampton students win at Film Northants

Date 16.11.2015

Two aspiring film makers from the University of Northampton have won two awards at Film Northants. ​

Joe Burden and Alex Powell, who are both studying Media Production and Moving Image, were awarded the Judges’ Choice Award, as well as securing second place in the public vote for their film Beneath the Wormwood Trees.

The film is a dark fantasy about a cursed man and his one chance to save himself. It’s essentially about how every person is a product of the life that they’ve lived, and how they can either carry all of the pain and sad things around, or let go and move on. In the film the man does the former, and faces the consequences.

Film Northants is an award-winning not-for-profit film festival based in Northamptonshire that aims to nurture, showcase and promote the talent of local people and to raise the county’s profile. Screenings are hosted throughout the year, including an annual short film awards night. Film Northants runs in association with Errol Flynn Filmhouse, to give entrants the chance of watching their own film at the cinema and winning fantastic trophies and prizes.

Joe said: “It meant a huge amount to me to win the Judges’ Choice award, because this means that people have looked at the film critically and seen something of worth in it. That was our goal when we were making the film, but all the same it was still unbelievable to actually hear that we’d won.”

Alex commented: “It was amazing just to earn the Public Vote award and we never thought at all we’d be in the running to get the Judges’ Choice award. We couldn’t believe it! We took a risk telling a complicated narrative where the story is down to what the audience thought was going on, so to have the judges look at the film and agreeing on it, was amazing!”

Tim Coley, Senior Lecturer in Media Production at the University of Northampton, commented: “Beneath the Wormwood Trees is an inspirational, mature piece of film-making that will undoubtedly inspire more students to submit work next year. Film competitions like this provide a showcase for emerging talent. People sometimes forget that producers and programme-makers need talent as much as talent needs them. Previous Media Production graduate winners have gone on to become extremely successful in their own field – one example is Dean Alexander who set up his own production business a few years ago.”

Joe and Alex won a total of £250 plus mentoring with producer/director Tony Klinger.