A GROUP of young West Lothian film-makers are in the running for a top national award.
A team from Firefly Arts, aged between 13 and 18, have been nominated for a prestigious First Light Award for their film Paperboy.
The film tells the story of Joe, a paperboy determined to keep his job despite coming up against various obstacles that get in the way of completing his round, springy door flaps, sprinklers, angry dogs and mad neighbours.
He enlists the help of ‘P’ who builds ingenious gadgets which will overcome anything in his way.
The film has beaten competition from movies made by teams all across the UK to make the final shortlist of four movies in the 'Best Film by Over 13s', along with films from Bristol, Birmingham and London.
The film will be judged by experts including Paul Greengrass who directed The Bourne Ultimatum and United 93; Iwan Rheon of MisFits; and Claire Forlani of CSI:NY and Meet Joe Black.
Hosted by radio and television presenter, Nick Grimshaw, the awards ceremony at the Odeon Cinema in Leicester Square, London, on March 15, will be attended by a mix of film industry luminaries and celebrities.
And they will present awards across a range of categories including 'Best Animation', 'Best Drama', and 'Best Original Music'.
Len McCaffer, who project managed the making of Paperboy, said he was delighted with the film’s success.
He said: “I am absolutely delighted because this is such a big award – it’s the equivalent of the Baftas for youth film.
“First Light fund between 300 and 400 films a year so it’s a great achievement for Paperboy to make it to the final four in its category.
“I’m not based at Firefly anymore, but I still hear from some of the teenagers who were involved with the film and I know they’re all really excited and rightly proud of their achievements.”
First Light helps young people from all backgrounds to develop their skills, talent, creativity, confidence and entrepreneurial capabilities.
The organisation provides opportunities for young people to work with industry professionals on high-quality, youth-led digital media projects.
Since launching in 2001, First Light have enabled over 40,000 budding creative professionals to write, act, shoot, light, direct, construct and produce over 1000 films and media projects.
The productions cover a diverse range of topics and genres, and make use of accessible digital film and media technology.
The awards are supported by the National Lottery, through the UK Film Council.
Barbara Broccoli, First Light chair said: “The 2011 First Light Awards will celebrate the fantastic filmmaking achievements of young people from across the UK.
“Their films are inspirational, and increasingly sophisticated and entertaining.
“They give a unique insight into young lives and indicate that we have a remarkable amount of young talent within the UK of which we should be proud.”