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'Whistle My Lad' gains BAFTA nomination after critical acclaim

'Whistle My Lad' gains BAFTA nomination after critical acclaim

A film shoot in the north-east of Scotland turned out to be a labour of love for writer Richard Burke.

But, it seems the efforts have been worthwhile, with the news that Whistle My Lad has been nominated for a BAFTA.

The story of two star-crossed lovers on the Banffshire coast was shot over a lengthy period and with a scrupulous attention to detail.

Fifteen-year-old schoolgirl Christy Robinson, from Aberdeen, was selected for the lead role and two other youngsters, Andrew Cameron and Imogen Watt, were also given significant parts in the movie, which paints an evocative picture of life in the north-east at the turn of the 20th century.

The short work was screened at last year's Cannes Film Festival, and earned glowing reviews.

And now it has been shortlisted for a BAFTA in the New Talent award in the Design category.

Whistle My Lad Trailer from Tripswitch Productions on Vimeo.

Despite a rapidly busying schedule, Richard Burke took time to speak exclusively to STV.

He said: "It has been hectic, but things have gone very well so far.

"Scottish period dramas aren't that common and this has gone down very well.

"People have loved the music and the scenery and the period detail and we've had lots of positive feedback.

"We weren't sure what to expect, but thankfully, the audience and critical reaction has been a thumbs-up."

  (Tripswitch Productions)
via STV via STV

These words underline the ambition of everybody connected with Whistle My Lad and emphasise why they have not been fazed wherever they have taken their movie.

It may "only" be a short film at the moment, but it has excellent production values and a music score performed by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

As Richard said: "It has been a hugely satisfying project. The film is visually stunning - the scenery is beautiful as are the costumes - and we are delighted with it.

"The cast and crew worked very hard to produce something of such quality. We were particularly pleased that Christy took to her role so easily, given she had never acted before.

"The script for the follow-on film, which will be set in Banffshire, Oxford and Canada, is now written and we are working on subsequent drafts."

  (Tripswitch Productions)
via STV via STV

The next stage for the production team will be to investigate whether they can secure funding for the full-length venture.

But the backing already secured, allied to the positive vibes, suggests that they won't have to whistle too much longer.

Burke said: "We didn't know how the film would be viewed in an international setting.

"It was well-received when it was shown in Aberdeen, but you never take anything for granted."

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