Lancaster schooI and Emmy award-winning writer's zombie film is coming to a cinema near you

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Making the ‘big screen’ is the stuff of dreams for any aspiring actor or scriptwriter.

But that’s the reality for pupils at one Lancaster primary school as they head to the Duke’s Cinema this Friday for a screening of a film they helped to create with the guidance of an Emmy-winning TV comedy writer.

And – with zombies galore – Dallas Road Primary School’s Tig! is sure to be a hit with pupils, many of whom helped to write, produce and even star in this funny, exciting and sometimes a little scary sci-fi/horror/comedy.

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To set the scene, the short film sees two squabbling pupils forced to work together to save their schoolmates when aliens take over the school.

Tig! Is being screened at The Dukes cinema in Lancaster.Tig! Is being screened at The Dukes cinema in Lancaster.
Tig! Is being screened at The Dukes cinema in Lancaster.

“It's been a really fun project to be a part of,” said Dallas Road headteacher, Adam Newton. “It’s great for kids to be involved in something like this. Many took on roles in front and behind the cameras.”

Tig! has given youngsters the opportunity to work alongside Ian Martin, who won the prestigious American television award for his work on the hit political satire Veep – for which he also won two Writers Guild of America Awards – and has also written for BAFTA-winning BBC series The Thick of It. Other credits include In The Loop and a comedy drama for Radio 4, The Hartlepool Spy.

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Ian, who has lived in Lancaster since 1988, initially set up an experimental ‘writers room’ at Dallas Road, where two of his grandchildren are pupils. With Adam’s support, he modelled the group on a professional TV writers’ room.

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Behind the scenes of Tig!Behind the scenes of Tig!
Behind the scenes of Tig!

He was so delighted with the results he reached out to local Lancaster based filmmakers to get the film made. The Lancaster Film Initiative have been partnering with the school and even launched a successful crowdfunding campaign to help pay for the project.

Will Shelmerdine from Lancaster Film Initiative said: “Tig! is more than just a short film project. It is also an opportunity for Dallas Road Primary School students to have an introduction to the filmmaking world.”

Work on Tig – which premieres at The Dukes at 5pm on Friday (July 12) – actually started back in 2020 but was delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, so its arrival is all the sweeter.

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