A TEAM of city filmmakers will walk the red carpet with top Hollywood directors this month after being nominated for a gong at a glitzy awards bash.
The 12-strong cast and crew behind Edinburgh-based thriller Three Blind Mice – who are all teenagers – will rub shoulders with the likes of Sam Mendes, right, director of American Beauty and the forthcoming James Bond movie, and Hot Fuzz writer Edgar Wright at the prestigious First Light Award evening in London.
The renowned directors will even run the rule over the ten-minute screenplay, written by 18-year-old Lyle Bushe, before choosing the winner in the Best Film by Over 12s category.
Three Blind Mice tells the story of three young celebrities who let a friend die rather than tarnish their reputations but ultimately have to suffer the consequences.
It was produced in association with Capital-based charity Scottish Kids are Making Movies (Skamm) over six months, with much of the action filmed in a studio but with some scenes filmed on location.
Speaking about the film he wrote, directed and performed in, Mr Bushe said he was stunned when he learned it had been nominated for a “mini-Bafta”.
“I was quite shocked when I heard because I had no idea that this was going to happen,” he said.
“I also thought the film would be judged by people you probably never would have heard off so when I read it was people of the calibre of Sam Mendes, and having just watched American Beauty again recently, I was thinking ‘oh goodness’.
“Also, I can’t watch enough of Hot Fuzz or Shaun of the Dead by Edgar Wright.
“You look at all the films these two directors have made and it makes you realise that this is a massive opportunity.
“It’s a massive privilege to be up for this award at a ceremony which a lot of big British film celebrities attend.”
He added: “I think I’m going to be doing a lot of sucking up that day.”
Mr Bushe, who counts Alfred Hitchcock and John Carpenter among his influences, explained his screenplay was “quite disturbing”, filled with creepy nursery rhymes and radio broadcasts, but hoped it would appeal to the judging panel.
Barbara Broccoli, chair of First Light, said: “Filmmaking amongst young people across the UK has never been more popular.
“It is vitally important that young people from all backgrounds have a creative voice.
“The future of the British film industry will benefit from the creative talents that have been nurtured by First Light and celebrated at the awards.”
The budding director, from Comely Bank, is currently studying classics at Durham University, where he is the vice-president of the student film society.
He credits his apprenticeship with Skamm in Edinburgh as being central to his interest in filmmaking.
The award-winning project, based in the Guild rooms in Filmhouse, works with young people aged between 12 and 18 years to help learn the craft.