Worthing’s ArtHouse Cinema


It’s not in one location. And it only appears once a month, Worthing film club has become the arthouse cinema Worthing was missing.

I entered the Coast Café and paid my £4 as a non-member (free for members) then went to the bar for a beer. This was the venue for tonight’s film. The venue is a large café/bar right on the beach. It has a rustic and modern feel at the same time with a relaxed vibe. A row of cinema seats on wheels is set up in front of the bar, facing the projector screen. Chairs with cushions set up around too.

The film ‘The Look of silence’ has a less inviting atmosphere. Joshua Oppenheimer’s second documentary film is about the mass murders in 1960s Indonesia. Here following Adi, as he interviews those responsible for his brother’s torture and death during this time. It’s a film that leaves you emotionally winded for some time. But when I got my breath back I spoke to Stephen, the film club’s creator and now acting as bar man.

I asked Stephen why he set up the film club. He told me that when he moved to Worthing, the Dome cinema had recently re-opened after 30 years of neglect, threats of bulldozing and even talks of turning it into a shopping mall.

The Dome cinema is a beautiful and iconic building that has shown films since 1911. At the time of its restoration, many people had been hoping the dome would now become the town’s arthouse cinema, knowing main features could still be shown in the towns other local and much loved historical cinema, The Connaught Studio. However the licensing went to a small company that shows mainstream films and this left many people disappointed. Stephen however suggested the creation of a film club that could screen arthouse films, and so it happened and still is happening 10 years later.

Stephen tells me they show films ‘that aren’t coming here but should come here and that would have come here if we had an arthouse cinema.’ The next film on the 19th of March will be ‘Loveless’ Andrei Zvyagintsev’s dark story of a broken marriage and a missing child. Loveless opened to critical acclaim and it won the Jury Prize at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. This will be shown at the Connaught studio cinema. April 16th screening will be Medditerraneo, the story of a group of Italian soldier’s left abandoned on a Greek Island during WW2. At first the island appears abandoned, but when the locals realize the soldier’s are harmless, they descend from their hiding in the mountains and continue with their normal life. Soon the being stranded doesn’t seem so bad to the group of soldiers.


James Ryan – Worthing filmmaker


For more information and to keep up to date with what is being shown check out the website.


Or subscribe to the email at worthingfilmclub@gmail.com









With headlines of chaos encircling Brexit negotiations, we’re still simmering in the wake of a vote that aggressively divided our nation; families, friends, generations, classes and industries, all cut clean with a line down the middle. Leave or remain.  

Interestingly, here in Brighton and Hove, 68.6 per cent of the 146,675 votes cast were remain and 31.4 per cent were leave but in the rest of the country the story was very different. 

To portray the almost perfect division we witnessed on June 23 2016, director/producer Timothy George Kelly took the initiative of artistically capturing our nations post-referendum voice on film, in a documentary style with an art-house polish, Brexitannia.

Shown in Brighton at Dukes Komedia this autumn, Brexitannia is touring picturehouses nationwide as the first documentary-feature film about Brexit. 

Produced in black and white square format, the film immediately concentrates the viewers eye to an important focal point – with subject matter and dialogue taking the forefront, this is a film that’s first and foremost about the voice of the people it candidly captures.

A political, social portrait on a movement that shocked the world. 

Part 1: ‘The People’ 
The two-part film begins with a still of an untouched polling card, empty boxes for leave or remain, foreshadowing the films atmosphere henceforth, that’s open to interpretation while utilising the freedom of speech in perhaps it’s purest form; politically. 

There’s a definitive feeling of ‘don’t be scared to say what you think’ from the first few words of a northern lady sitting in her back garden against the backdrop of a washing line, explaining why she voted leave. 

Her decision was made on the basis of the EU’s guidelines of misshapen cucumbers. 

Which, kudos to Kelly, goes on to become a visual-reference throughout the film, montaging itself to give emphasis on the diversity of motivations behind the vote. 

Could something as small as a cucumber have impacted modern history? A question that’s reflected throughout the film, relating to Kelly’s motives of exploring the confusing logic behind Brexit. 

Snapshot portraits of taxi drivers, stay-at-home mums, artists, publicans, students, builders, grandmothers, have their say, short or long, large or small, leave or remain, educated or not, a fair and even portrayal of our country’s general opinion on our decision to leave the European Union and what it means to be British. 

Discussion swiftly moves on to what feels like the ‘bigger picture’, an underlining question of immigration and racism. One of two baby-boom-generational-men sat in a British boozer confidently suggests ‘I’m not racist by the way but British is this colour’ he says, while pinching the white of his forearm. 

The interviews flow like conversation, moving naturally into topics of border control, refugees, nationality identity crisis, globalisation, import/export, education and housing. 

Rather fittingly, towards the end of Part 1, conversation turns to the end of the world, a biblical philosophy with a quote from an Evangelical Christian suggesting that the separation of united countries could be the beginning of the end. Cue operatic music and some visuals of the London skyline ready for…

Part 2: ‘The experts’ 
While ‘The people’ was filmed with space to interpret honest opinions and out-loud thought processes, the composition and narrative becomes serious for the significantly shorter part of this documentary. 

Up-close and personal frames of experts such as philosopher and social critic Naom Chomsky and globalisation and human migration sociologist Saskia Sassen. 

They elegantly take us through an analysis of why the vote happened and of it’s expected repercussions with hints of Brexit being a cry for help, a consequence of neoliberalism with a one-way ticket to a capitalist country and suggestions of Murdoch’s frustration with Brussels to have been a major part of the shift. 

It was followed by a Q&A with the director and Professor Martin Evans, of European History at the University of Sussex, opening with “What is striking, is the confidence of which a lot of people express their feelings but also the intimate settings you (Mr. Kelly) positioned them in.” 


Nicola Morrison – Brighton Journalist Works



Brighton’s Biggest Rental House


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Over the last 10 years Promotion have built a strong reputation on keeping abreast of the latest releases and developments in technology, so their rental stock can offer the best solutions possible and team can offer the best advice. It’s this combination of great equipment and a first class knowledge that really allow Promotion Hire to deliver an unrivalled service.

Promotion Hire work with a wide range of clients nationally and internationally, including independent production companies, lighting camera operations, digital content, post production facilities, digital cinema and beyond.


Free Fire – more productions in Brighton?


I’ve been eagerly anticipating the release of Ben Wheatley’s shoot ‘em up ‘Free Fire’ since I spent four days on the set as a production assistant in 2015. With its recent theatrical release, it has met its high expectation being called an instant classic by people all over social media. Mark Kermode made it his film of the week, and I’ve seen it twice (even better the second time around). It is a cinematic experience like no other, and where better to make such a thrilling ride other than Brighton.

After doing a Q&A tour with advanced screenings of the film across the country, Ben Wheatley returned to his hometown Brighton to round off the trip at his ‘favourite cinema in the country’ Duke Of Yorks. When Wheatley introduced the film, he told us that it would be a fast 90 minutes, and that’s exactly what it was. Free Fire keeps you entertained from start to finish; and with its comedic dialogue and explosive action it’s hard not to enjoy yourself.

The audience at Duke Of Yorks welcomed Wheatley back with huge applause and the first question was of course, about Brighton. Wheatley is from and still lives in Brighton, so it’s not hard to imagine why he might want to shoot a film here. However, we were all amused when he said it was because he liked the idea of walking to work everyday. According to Wheatley the production was great fun, and Brighton was a huge part of that. He was able to take the cast and crew, who were new to Brighton, to different restaurants and bars even he had never been to before; soaking up the city’s atmosphere together and making the most of the seven weeks they had here. This would explain why the cast look like they’re having so much fun in the film, because they genuinely were enjoying each others company and having a good time on and off set. I worked the last four days on the set, and still had an incredible experience. Most of the cast had already wrapped, but what I was able to see was how close the entire crew had become and how much everyone had enjoyed the production.

Martin Scorsese’s name being bought up in the Q&A’s is probable something Wheatley is used too, being attached to the project as executive producer, it was bound to be mentioned. But if you thought that the director of Taxi Driver was walking around Brighton, you would be mistaken. Instead Scorsese gave his name after reading the script. Something that helped ‘legitimise’ the project according to Wheatley, which helped cast and fund the film.

Ben Wheatley has quickly become one of the UK’s most prolific and exciting directors. With recent films such as Sightseers, High Rise and now Free Fire, the film industry will want to see him continue this fantastic run of entertainment. This means he is more than likely to make films in Brighton again and with the cast and crew having so much fun during the production of the film, word is sure to get out that Brighton is the perfect city for film.

Jack Sambrook


Legacy film and diaspora cinema


It’s a labour of love. We love doing it and we love screening these films.

If we don’t do it, who will?”

Legacy Film have gone from strength to strength since launching their first festival in Brighton five years ago, to showcase work by and about people of African and Caribbean origin. The key to their success is a do-it-yourself ethos and the desire to share the rarely shown gems they’ve discovered.

I thought, why aren’t there more stories like this being shown?” said Legacy Film founder Paul Jackson. That was his reaction to the BBC adaptation of Small Island, which depicted the Empire Windrush generation of Caribbean migrants and their relationships with the English people they encountered.

The desire to find more of those stories, coupled with his love of film and involvement with community organisations such as Brighton & Hove’s MOSAIC (a charity for families of black and mixed-race parentage), galvanised Jackson into action. In 2010 he launched the first Legacy Film Festival in Brighton, to coincide with Black History Month.

Since then, Legacy have built up a loyal following due to their eclectic and inclusive programming of work offering ‘positive representations in film for those of the African and Caribbean diaspora’. Their screenings are a clever mix of genres, styles and themes encompassing animation, shorts, documentaries and full-length features.

Medicine for Melancholy 1

The first two Legacy Festivals received funding from Screen South. But despite their established track record and the undoubted appetite for stories reflecting the black experience more fully, Legacy still faced hurdles when attempting to set up more regular screenings at local cinemas.

We were told that there was no market or audience for the films we wanted to show,” Jackson said. Frustrated by this lack of support, Legacy decided to adopt a do-it-yourself, more maverick approach.

One of the most empowering things was deciding to use our money, buy the equipment we needed and just get on with it.”

Armed with the essentials (a screen, projector, amp, speakers and DVD player), Legacy were equipped to progress on their own terms and now have a regular home at The Blue Man in Brighton.

As Legacy have developed, Jackson has been joined by Althea Wolfe, their Project Director, who has a particular interest in the development and promotion of Caribbean cinema, and Issey Osman, who now leads on programming.

It’s a labour of love. We love doing it and we love screening these films,” Jackson said. “If we don’t do it, who will?”

The screenings are still free because for now at least, Legacy’s priority is to build an audience willing to take a chance on unfamiliar work because they trust the knowledge and judgement of the people who have chosen it.

In the long term, Legacy would love to have a permanent space for film screenings and events such as music and spoken word performances, bringing together other like-minded creatives who live and work in the city.

A great example of Legacy’s collaborative approach is Who is Oscar? This Arts Council-funded project showcased the work of Oscar Micheaux, a 20th century African-American filmmaker who made over 40 self-financed films (“the original crowd-funder”, according to Jackson).

A Legacy screening of Micheaux’s 1920 silent film Within Our Gates was accompanied by a live soundtrack by WOMAD international award-winning musician Saida Kanda. A short documentary about Micheaux by American filmmaker Tim Reid was also shown, and the whole event was introduced by spoken word artist Elmi Ali. The event toured to venues in Southampton, Hastings, Crawley, London and Brighton and was documented by director Cathy Hassan and photographer Nathaniel Bagot-Sealey.

Within Our Gates

Legacy also have a presence at the local African Night Fever music nights organised by Ebou Touray. Alongside the live music and DJ sets, Legacy screen short films – another way of raising awareness about their work and building links.

The most satisfying aspect of the Legacy screenings is the positive feedback. “I like to see how people respond and react to the films. Sometimes people surprise you, and it’s great when they come up to tell you their thoughts about what they’ve seen,” said Jackson.


Quadrophenia DOP – Brian Tufano


Distinguished cinematographer Brian Tufano worked on many notable BBC television dramas before going on to build a reputation for nurturing the talents of rising directors on key British films such as Quadrophenia, Shallow Grave, Trainspotting, Billy Elliott, East is East and Kidulthood. Film City profiles his brilliant career. 

 The most important thing that you have to remember is that you need to go out and make films.

Brian Tufano’s fascination with the workings of the film industry began when he was still a young boy.

He was a regular visitor to the cinema with his mother throughout his childhood, and when he was nine he saw some photographs showing what went on behind the scenes on a film set. Trying to make the connection between the films he saw on screen and the work done by the camera crew opened the door to a world that enthralled him.

East is East

Living in Shepherd’s Bush, he was close to the Gainsborough Studios at Lime Grove which were responsible for popular British films such as The Lady Vanishes and The Thirty Nine Steps. Tufano would wait outside the studios watching the comings and goings which fuelled his interest even further.

After leaving school he got a job as a BBC projectionist and eventually worked on Sports View (the forerunner to Match of the Day). This led to a post as a trainee assistant cameraman, and Tufano’s career developed from there.

He worked at the BBC for over 20 years, building an outstanding reputation as a cinematographer, especially during its golden period of dramas during the 1970s. Tufano then went on to enhance his standing even further within the film industry where his credits include Quadrophenia, Billy Elliott, East is East, Kidulthood and several films with Danny Boyle including Shallow Grave,Trainspotting and A Life Less Ordinary.


In 2001 he was awarded a BAFTA for Outstanding Contribution to Film and Television, and in 2002 he won the Special Jury Award for Outstanding Contribution to Independent Film from the British Independent Film Awards.

A recurring thread throughout Tufano’s career is his willingness to work with and nurture young and inexperienced filmmakers, either as colleagues or students. For the last 13 years he has worked at The National Film and Television School, where he is Head of Cinematography.

In a recent article by British Cinematographer magazine, director Alan Parker recalls making his directorial debut while working with Tufano on the BBC drama The Evacuees. “He was a hard taskmaster – both tormentor and teacher. What he taught me was that however little time there was (and there’s never enough time), everything – every scene, every performance, every lighting set-up could be a little better if you didn’t settle for what was easy and obvious.”

Tufano also receives high praise from Danny Boyle in his biography: “He was brilliant for me: my first proper movie cameraman. I’d express an idea, and he just got it…He is brilliant with first-time directors. He’s so experienced and yet gracious about passing on his skills and letting you benefit.”

For the last three years Tufano has also been a patron of Brighton Film School, renewing his connection with the city that began over 35 years ago when he worked on Quadrophenia.


He regards Brighton as a terrain of contrasts – the sea, high density of housing and striking Regency architecture, alongside the South Downs – that makes it visually distinctive. “It is also the people that make the city so great; they are the heart and eyes of the place, making Brighton really interesting as a whole.”

So what does he consider to be the key attributes required when striving to build a career in the film industry?

Knowledge, drive and passion for the discipline you’re interested in is the key to success. But the most important thing that you have to remember is that you need to go out and make films. No matter what the size of the production is, you just need to make films.”

Better is Best by David A Ellis: British Cinematograher magazine Issue 067, January 2015

Danny Boyle in his own words by Amy Raphael 

5 Minutes with CINECITY Co-Director Tim Brown

Tim Brown and I am Co-Director of CINECITY…

“The camera is God”


Two highly skilled local cameramen, Peter Ditch and Ray Moore, have accumulated a wealth of experience at the coalface of the British film and television industry. They reveal the significance of a short end, the art of focus pulling, and their favourite cinema in Brighton.

Being a milkman is a dying trade these days, but for Peter Ditch, it’s a profession that has played a significant part in his career in the film industry not just once, but twice.

Brighton-born Peter developed a love of photography from an early age, and by his early teens had acquired a Box Brownie camera and his own darkroom at home. He applied to the National Film School at 17 but was unsuccessful due to lack of experience. While working as a milkman alongside his father, Peter made deliveries to filmmaker Derrick Wynne who lived in Seaford and was head of Brighton Film Studios during the 1950s.

Derrick was looking for a driver at his London studio, and this was too good an opportunity for Peter to miss. After shadowing for just a week, he found himself making deliveries throughout busy London streets in a tiny van. “It was horrendous!” he recalls with a laugh. “I was always getting lost. Somehow I lasted the course to become an in-house clapper loader.”

Peter outlines a typical scenario where the director has set up a shot that is likely to take around a minute to film. The clapper loader knows that there is around one and a half minutes of film left in the can. But what if the actor forgets their lines? The director may call cut; alternatively, he or she may decide to keep rolling to maintain the momentum of the scene.

“You mustn’t run out of film, but equally you mustn’t waste film,” Peter says. He explains that if a clapper loader in this situation loads new film straight away, they will be left with ‘short ends’, and too many of those are judged to be a sign of wastefulness.

Peter’s friend and colleague, Ray Moore, loved going to the cinema while growing up in Edgware and worked as a film projectionist for the ABC circuit and in the West End after leaving school. “This was what got me superglued to images because I’d see movies over and over again.”

A cameraman took Ray to see a commercial being shot and was instrumental in helping him to get his union card. Alongside ‘very hard’ and incredibly disciplined colleagues, Ray worked as a camera assistant, then completed a 12-month course and entered ‘the premier league’, first as a focus puller, then as a 1st assistant cameraman.

Ray likens the process of focus pulling to ‘writing in the dark’ because you can’t know how successful you’ve been until you see the rushes.

“The focus puller is responsible for the definition on the screen. Everyone who watches a film is aware if an image is soft focus, even if only subliminally, so it’s really important to work out where on the shot the focus will need to be,” he explains.

Peter and Ray first worked together on The Amorous Milkman, a 1975 comedy starring Diana Dors which was directed by Derren Nesbitt. Other projects they worked on alongside each other include The Brylcreem Boys, shot in 1996, one of the first movies to be filmed on the Isle of Man.


Over several decades both men built notable careers. Ray’s extensive TV credits include The Persuaders and Band of Brothers, as well as a BAFTA Award-winning short film called Goody Two Shoes. Peter found his niche as a cameraman in documentary film and loved the autonomy of being much more fully involved in every aspect of the creative process. Among his career highlights are his collaborations with actor and documentary maker Kenneth Griffith, including the BBC documentary Against The Empire: The Boer War, which won a Broadcasting Press Guild Award.

Both men are unashamed old-school technicians, unassuming about their success, appreciative of the “extraordinary” experiences they’ve had and above all, proud of their craft.

“When the camera’s set up you have a frame, and all the other collective art forms start doing their best work within that frame. The camera is God – everything revolves around the camera,” says Ray.

The two men retain their enthusiasm for the industry, and an avid interest in how it continues to develop. “Everyone can make a film on their iPhone now because of the way that technology has moved on. In the past you were restricted because you could only work with film. There are pros and cons, like with everything, but in some ways I think it’s great,” Peter says.Having spent many years at the heart of the film and TV industry, the current work being done by the two men is equally valuable. As technical supervisors, they are passing on their expertise and knowledge to students at Brighton Film School.

Ray sounds a note of caution, expressing concern that “the craft of film-making has been prostituted by digital technology.” But he can see many positives for up-and-coming filmmakers too.  “You can edit a film and do post-production in your bedroom now, you don’t have to go to London – I think that’s remarkable.”

Above all, the two men have held on to their passion for cinema. When they’re not busy running Brighton Film School workshops, they can often be found at the Dukes Komedia on a quiet afternoon watching the latest releases (Birdman was a recent favourite). As Ray says ‘there is nothing like sitting in a darkened room watching a film and there is some outstanding material out there. Cinema is alive and well.”

Peter and Ray’s words of wisdom:
– Don’t be late!
– A good camera assistant is always thinking one step ahead, anticipating what’s needed
– Lots of film and TV opportunities exist in post-production
– If you want your work as a cinematographer to stand out, try something different

5 Minutes with Production Designer Anna Deamer


Introduce yourself…

I am a designer and art director and have worked in theatre, film, television and fine art. I teach courses in production design and art direction at Brighton Film School and Wimbledon College of Art alongside my own practice. Currently I make gallery-based work in the form of full size, built and dressed film sets, these are immersive for the gallery audience who can enter and walk around the rooms. The sets are lit and accompanied by sound.

Who or what has inspired you to be involved in making film/moving image?

I was working for the Royal Court Theatre as a Theatre Designer in London in the 1990s and was fed up with tiny budgets and late nights. I was moaning abut this to a colleague, an Australian designer called Helen Bauman, and she suggested I contact the BBC because she thought I would enjoy the working process of design for film. I contacted the BBC Art Department and was lucky to be offered a traineeship, I absolutely loved it, the team work, the professionalism, the speed of work and proper budgets to work with. I was hooked form that moment.

How has Brighton and Hove influenced your work?

Moving to Brighton has had a huge impact on my work. Four years ago I started working locally with CINECITY who run Brighton Film Festival, on set design projects based on Brighton films, novels and novelists. I have become interested in and am motivated by Brighton Film History, local writers, and artists, there is a great sense of history in this city. I also started teaching set design locally and feel very strongly that Brighton, which used to be at the centre of the UK film industry 100 years ago has the potential to be a centre again and hope I can help a little to encourage that.

What advice would you give to creative people seeking work or wanting to develop their careers in the industry?

Get some training and contact production companies for work experience. It’s a very competitive industry so the more training and work experience you have the better your chances of paid work. Be prepared to work hard and work long hours. You need commitment, persistence and determination.

What’s the most interesting part of your job?

Everything! The diversity of the work you undertake in the art department is exciting and challenging and never dull. You find yourself doing such a wide range of jobs from research, script analysis, drawing, model making, construction, budgets, set dressing and buying, prop making, graphics, on camera work, screenings…you meet a wide range of people, travel and get access to places that you would not normally see. It’s a privilege to work in the industry.

What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?

Being able to manage the wide range of tasks….see above!

Dead or alive, who are the top three people you’d most like to collaborate with, and why?

Georges Méliès, Alfred Hitchcock (who worked as an art director in his early career) and Orson Welles to learn skills, tricks and methods from the early days of film, skills that may be lost one day, model shots, clever use of mirrors, matt shots and to watch these masters at work .

If you could only take one film away with you on a desert island, what would it be and why?

Right now it would be Alan Partridge’s (Steve Coogan) ‘Alpha Pappa’, which I’ve watched endlessly with my son and partner and which we all love. It would remind me of them and make me laugh.


“If you don’t live and breathe it, then don’t bother.”


A profile of international award-winning film producer and director Michele D’Acosta, whose credits include Fetishes, Kurt and Courtney, Biggie and Tupac, Moonbug and No Distance Left to Run.

“A magical thinker” – that’s how Michele D’Acosta defines the role of the film producer, “someone who is singleminded, enthusiastic, tenacious and passionate in pursuit of their vision”. The rollcall of films produced by D’Acosta suggests that she fulfils all of the necessary criteria.

Her career began in the press office of Amnesty International. This environment gave her access to great stories, and the opportunity to pitch a series of short films to Channel 4 who were keen to collaborate with the charity. This led to a placement as a trainee TV producer programme for Channel 4’s ground-breaking documentary series Dispatches, followed by work for the BBC, and a period in the Soviet Union documenting the major political changes taking place in the early 1990s.

blurShe has worked closely with acclaimed director Nick Broomfield on three documentaries: Fetishes (1996), filmed at an S & M parlour in New York, Kurt and Courtney (1998) about the volatile life and times of grunge musician Kurt Cobain and his wife Courtney Love, and perhaps most memorably, Biggie and Tupac (2002) about the murdered rappers Christopher ‘Notorious B.I.G’ Wallace and Tupac Shakur.


After reading about Tupac’s shooting the day after it took place and sensing that this was a story she wanted to tell, D’Acosta embarked on extensive research. She became intrigued by the relationships within Tupac’s family, his mother’s membership of the Black Panthers, and the rapper’s quest to share political messages through his music. “The Black Panthers manifesto was that black people don’t have black power”.

biggieHer approach was to interview friends and teachers who knew Tupac as a child rather than focussing solely on music industry contemporaries: “It was too easy to sensationalise things and go down that route, I knew that was the angle most film makers would take.”

Nick Broomfield has described D’Acosta as ‘the Mistress of Charm’ and praised her meticulous approach: “I thought she was very talented, very committed in her work…Michele has a very thorough way of working and a very detailed mind.”

What has she learnt most from someone renowned for his ability to construct stories that often feature challenging and unwilling participants?

“One of his key techniques is knowing how to control the energy in the room. There’s lots of planning and preparation by the production team behind the scenes to build a momentum, and then he often takes the interviewee by surprise once the camera is rolling,” she explains.

“The tension is created, and captured in the frame. He has a skill for manipulating a subject, but it’s to get to the truth and capture crucial moments.”

A contrasting approach was needed for No Distance Left to Run, the documentary about Blur’s triumphant comeback concerts culminating at Glastonbury and Hyde Park on which D’Acosta was a co-executive producer.

“The band were exhausted, relationships were fragile, there were lots of obstacles. It was really important to make them feel comfortable and relaxed.”

As well as her belief in the power of using documentary film for social change, D’Acosta is also committed to improving the lives of others through other means. She put filmmaking to one side to help people directly through her involvement in a charitable project working with polio survivors in Sierra Leone.

Initiatives like this have altered her perspective – she’s no longer satisfied with cinema as the sole platform through which she can share stories and highlight issues she cares about. “As human beings we have a responsibility to help raise awareness by whatever means necessary.”

She is currently immersed in researching a documentary about the life of black British boxer Randolph Turpin, a world middleweight champion in the 1950s whose sporting achievements were overshadowed by his troubled personal life. “I’m very drawn to the challenge of telling his story, it has a great deal of resonance on so many levels, particularly the racism he fought in and out of the ring.”

D’Acosta grew up in East Sussex and still spends as much time in Brighton as she can. “What is it about this city? Maybe it’s in the water, or the air, the people all seem to feel it.” She points to a creative and collaborative energy rooted in Brighton’s history of film-making, as well as an acceptance of people that enables her to feel at home.

She strongly believes that more should be done to invest in young people seeking ways into the film industry, and that it is the responsibility of people like her to nurture and encourage new talent.

However, D’Acosta also has a warning. “It’s hard work so if you aren’t 100% dedicated to it, if you don’t live and breathe it, then don’t bother. All other skills you can learn, but passion and dedication – that cannot be taught.”


 Work out why you want to make the film – what’s unique about the perspective you can offer?

 Look for the alternative angle

 Be accurate – don’t distort material or take quotes out of context.

 Build a piece of work that can leave a legacy.

 Be on time!