Success for budding filmmakers

Former Ballyclare High School pupil Conor Shearer, winner of third prize in the A2 Best Film category, with CCEA reporter Ruth Maguire. INNT 49-503CON

Former Ballyclare High School pupil Conor Shearer, winner of third prize in the A2 Best Film category, with CCEA reporter Ruth Maguire. INNT 49-503CON

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BUDDING filmmakers from Ballyclare High and Belfast High got the chance to showcase their work recently at a special event organised by the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA) as part of Cinemagic 2012.

The CCEA Moving Image Arts showcase at Queen’s Film Theatre, Belfast allowed a select number of GCSE and A Level students to see their films and animations on the big screen for the first time.

More than 350 students and teachers attended the Cinemagic Young Filmmaker Awards screenings, with an expert judging panel selecting prize winners in various categories.

Ellan Rankin from Belfast High was joint winner of the Best Animation category for her work ‘Midknight’, while Conor Shearer, a former pupil of Ballyclare High who is now a student at Belfast Met, took third place in the A2 Best Film category with his film ‘In Lucem’. Ballyclare High School’s Mark McDowell received a screening of his AS film ‘Revenge’.

Conor’s powerful film about his grandmother’s struggle with dementia was also shortlisted as one of the finalists in the overall Cinemagic Film Awards.

Bernard McCloskey, Head of Education at Northern Ireland Screen, said the judges had been very impressed by the high standard of films on show.

“Yet again, Moving Image Arts students have created a wide range of films that display creativity, ingenuity and a real understanding of the art of filmmaking. I want to congratulate all the students and their teachers for the hard work they have displayed up to this point,” he commented.

Ballyclare High School’s Moving Image Arts teacher, Laureen Todd, praised her students’ fantastic achievement.

“The boys are talented filmmakers and this is shown in their work. Both pieces are well crafted and Conor’s is extremely moving.

“With the film industry booming in Northern Ireland, it is exciting preparing MIA students to work in this competitive industry.

“Every year the work gets stronger and more professional which is what the film industry is looking for,” she said.

Conor and Mark’s short films can be viewed on the Ballyclare High School website by clicking on ‘Latest News’.

More coverage in this week’s Times...