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That's a wrap! Student, 19, makes debut feature-length film to raise anti-bullying awareness

PUBLISHED: 16:31 21 March 2019 | UPDATED: 16:40 21 March 2019

Jack Spence's debut feature-length film, 'Talk To Me', covers the after-effects of bullying. Picture: Richard Harrison

Jack Spence's debut feature-length film, 'Talk To Me', covers the after-effects of bullying. Picture: Richard Harrison

SPENCE PRODUCTIONS

A talented teenager who suffered as a victim of bullying has harnessed the experience to create his debut feature-length film.

Student Jack Spence, who attends Lowestoft Sixth Form College, has made his debut feature-length film at the age of 19. Picture: Jack SpenceStudent Jack Spence, who attends Lowestoft Sixth Form College, has made his debut feature-length film at the age of 19. Picture: Jack Spence

Jack Spence, who studies at Lowestoft Sixth Form College, has just completed ‘Talk To Me’, which tackles a range of topics including bullying, suicide and the importance of pursuing your dreams.

Shot predominantly at the sixth form, the film opens in a college traumatised by the suicide of one of its students, Colton Young.

Teacher Tom Harrison notices musical ability in Steven Pickfield – one of those who drove Colton to take his own life – but Steven’s new talent is not appreciated by his bullying friend, Paul.

Dylan Turford, Colton’s best friend, is still being bullied by Steven and Paul, but Steven is feeling under increased pressure to change direction.

Having teamed up with his film and media teacher Richard Harrison, a writer and filmmaker in his own right, Mr Spence decided to turn his negative experiences into inspiration for an engaging script.

“I was initially planning to make a short film and was looking for ideas,” he said. “As someone who was heavily bullied in school and college, bullying struck me as a good theme to cover.

Jack Spence's debut feature-length film, 'Talk To Me', covers the after-effects of bullying. Picture: Jack SpenceJack Spence's debut feature-length film, 'Talk To Me', covers the after-effects of bullying. Picture: Jack Spence

“I thought it would be good to tell the tale from a student’s perspective. With Richard and the college supporting me every step of the way, it soon developed into a full-length picture.

“The main focus of the film is the bully. I wanted to show that people are capable of transforming themselves and no one is beyond help.”

Staggeringly, Mr Spence wrote, directed and edited the film inside a week, with the shoot itself lasting a little more than four days.

Student Jack Spence, who attends Lowestoft Sixth Form College, has made his debut feature-length film at the age of 19. Picture: Richard HarrisonStudent Jack Spence, who attends Lowestoft Sixth Form College, has made his debut feature-length film at the age of 19. Picture: Richard Harrison

The 19-year-old was even forced to take on a major acting role when one of the cast members had to pull out at the last minute.

Mr Harrison added: “I took Jack under my wing with this project, but really he did it all himself. It’s nice to work with someone who shows such vision throughout the entire process.

“The finished film has depth, style and beauty - which are exactly what the British film industry needs.”

‘Talk To Me’ will premiere on an invite-only basis at Lowestoft Sixth Form College on a date to be arranged.

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