The Isle of Man Steam Packet Company has leant its support to a Manx team involved in a new film project.
Eight film crew members travelled to England to shoot ‘Him Upstairs’. The short film is a touching character-led comedy drama about a Liverpudlian psychic, Margaret Conroy.
The screenplay was written by Manx resident Sonya Quayle and her best friend Neil Mooney, and won Best Unproduced Screenplay at last year’s British Independent Film Festival. Also involved in the production is Isle of Man-based and BAFTA-nominated Cinematographer John Craine.
The film is being made to coincide with the Isle of Man’s Island of Culture year, and is also being supported by the Isle of Man Arts Council and charity Age Isle of Man.
The lead role in Him Upstairs is being played by Gwen Taylor (Duty Free and Coronation Street). Ricky Tomlinson (The Royale Family, Brookside and Cracker) plays her beloved husband Frank, while Kieron Richardson (Hollyoaks and Dancing on Ice) appears in the role of James.
Shooting took place on a purpose-built set at Lime Pictures in Liverpool, and the Steam Packet Company agreed to meet the transport costs for the local crew.
Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘When we were contacted by the producer of Him Upstairs, we were very keen to lend our support to what promises to be an important project.
‘This film is not only a valuable opportunity for the local crew involved to develop and expand their skills, but also an opportunity to bring attention to the often misunderstood condition of dementia.
‘The Island is fortunate to have many talented, creative people, and working at a facility like Lime Pictures with such an experienced cast will help enhance those skills and bring benefits to the filmmaking community in the Isle of Man.’
Him Upstairs Co-producer Zoe Guilford added: ‘This project has been kindly supported by the Isle of Man Arts Council and charity Age Isle of Man, and it is important as much of the budget as possible is spent on making the best film we can. That is why assistance from the Steam Packet Company is so vital.
‘On behalf of the whole team I’d like to thank the Steam Packet Company for helping us make this ambitious project a reality.’
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