An aspiring young filmmaker has bagged an award for short film of the year at the University of Salford. 21-year-old film fanatic, Callum Atherton, will be previewing his film, Ceaseless, at the campus on Friday.
The World War One 15-minute long epic focuses on two British soldiers who unexpectedly capture a German soldier – and the remarkable journey they go on as their humanity is tested.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Callum, of Oldham, said his love of film started at just 12 years of age, when his dad would take him to the cinema every Wednesday night.
“My love of film started with my dad. When I was 16, he told me he had written a script for a feature film, and from there my career began. I hope to one day make that film for him – and going to university has allowed me to follow that path,” Callum said.
As part of his final year at the University of Salford, Callum and the crew were tasked to create a ten to 15-minute short film on whatever they wanted to do.
“We decided to do ours on World War One, as we knew that filming in that area would be hard to do,” he said.
“It is loosely based around the Battle of Mont Sorrel in 1916, about two British soldiers who capture a young German soldier. We see them battle their thoughts and mental health, as they would have been expected to eliminate captured soldiers straight away.
“That area of WW1 and the way it is portrayed is really difficult to show, and we went above and beyond to show that.”
The small crew travelled down to Bodelwyddan Castle, in Wales where they used a live action trench.
They also filmed in a forest in Royton, namely Tandle Hill, to help capture the environment.
The project took months to complete, and won them praise as it was highly accredited by the university, and landed Callum a first. At their annual University awards evening, Ceaseless won film of the year.
Callum and the crew have since been interviewed by Samyang/Holdan UK about the makings of the film, and Ceaseless has also been entered into local film festivals.
“It was a large feat with fierce competition,” Callum said.
“It felt like we really accomplished something. For a long time we didn’t think it was going to happen for such a small crew, but so many people came along to help.
“They knew how much it meant to us to create the film. It’s quite nice to be able to show that at the premiere and share it with everyone together.”
The premiere will take place this Friday (November 4) from 7pm at the University of Salford in Media City.
Alongside Ceaseless, the crew will also be showcasing their second year film which they made together, Pocket Money.
Described as a mafia-style, gangster-flick, the team were restricted from showing any forms of violence, drug use or anything to insinuate criminal behaviour. Whereas in Ceaseless, all options were open.
“I’m excited but nervous about the premiere, it’s taken a while to organise everything,” Callum added.
“We want to make it the best it can possibly be. We hope people like it. We want to see it together.”
Tickets for Ceaseless can be found here .