North East Screen is inviting organisations and consultants to submit a proposal for an Interim evaluation of “North East Screen Industries Programme – Year 1 and Year 2”.
The North East Screen Industries Partnership (NESIP) is a vehicle established in 2022 to facilitate the strategic development of the TV and screen industry in the North East region. The development programme is delivered by North East Screen.
The programme aims to:
• Strengthen infrastructure
• Grow the sector through job creation, business growth and resilience
• Develop, attract, and retain talent
• Positively raise the profile of the region
• Build wider awareness of the screen sector opportunities in the North East
• Encourage pride in communities and a sense of belonging
• Support the region’s agenda to attract inward investment
Your proposal should include:
• A brief description of your organisation/area of work
• A description of how you will approach the requirements for this work; specifically, your response should address the areas listed in section 2
• A short description of the expertise that would be applied to this work (including CVs in appendix).
• Examples of any previous work which is relevant (maximum 2 examples)
• A quote for this work including VAT and expenses.
North East Screen, the regional screen agency for North East England, are fully supportive of the scale and ambition of the development of CrownWorks Studios, which would be a crucial game-changer for the region’s rapidly growing screen industry.
Alison Gwynn, Chief Executive of North East Screen, believes in making brave and ambitious decisions and plans for the region, with the studio development clearly being an ambitious plan.
On North East Screen support for the studio plan, Alison said: “Through the work delivered by North East Screen and the North East Screen Industries Partnership (NESIP) we are already delivering real results to grow the screen industry across the North East. Capital investment however, in a large studio would supercharge the region’s capacity to deliver a much broader range of international production across the whole year. We know we have the talent, skills, locations, and experience, building on the impact of activity that has already been developed and delivered across the region in the last two years. Now we need the infrastructure to make the industry more sustainable and create long-term jobs and opportunities.
“Since NESIP backed North East Screen to deliver a strategic five-year development project in 2020, production has risen 28% in the last year (bucking the national trend), and for every £1 invested by NESIP, up to £8 is being spent in the region creating well paid creative jobs. We will likely see these figures continue to rise across 2024 and 2025.
“The North East is very much open for, and delivering business. It is vital for the region to maintain this momentum in a very fast-moving sector. FulwelCain’s plans for CrownWorks Studios presents a phenomenal opportunity to capitalise on, and bring real change to the North East’s infrastructure, helping the region become one of the leading film and TV production hubs not only here in the UK, but globally.”
Newspapers and news websites from around the North East have also come together to call on the Government to provide financial support for the CrownWorks Studios plan.
A joint statement from regional editors Ross Robertson, Ian Arkle, Graeme Whitfield, Helen Dalby, Sophie Barley and Gavin Foster said: “The CrownWorks Studios plan has the potential to be transformational for Sunderland and the wider North East. It could be the catalyst for growth in the North East creative industries in the same way that the Nissan plant was for the car industry 40 years ago.
“FulwellCain have developed a plan that has the backing of the whole region, as well as key players in the film and TV world.
“We felt it was only right that the regional media unite our voices to demonstrate the depth of that support in every corner of the North East. Politicians of all parties have supported the plans but now is the time for the Government to provide the financial support to back up those warm words.
“The CrownWorks plan is levelling up in action and an opportunity that cannot be squandered.”
A romantic comedy which sees Teesside International Airport stand in for New York International Airport will hit screens on Friday (February 9).
Upgraded is the latest movie to be filmed in Tees Valley and comes to Prime Video this week.
Secret shooting took place at the airport in August 2022, and saw Teesside transformed into “New York International Airport”.
Upgraded sees Camila Mendes star as Ana – an ambitious intern dreaming of a career in the art world while trying to impress her demanding boss Claire (Marisa Tomei).
When she’s upgraded to first class on a work trip, she meets handsome Will (Archie Renaux), who mistakes Ana for her boss – a white lie that sets off a glamorous chain of events, romance and opportunity, until her fib threatens to surface.
The Amazon Original movie is directed by Carlson Young. Lead Camila Mendes and Spider-man: Homecoming actress Marisa Tomei were among the cast who filmed at Teesside Airport.
Filming took place in just a day and saw the airport terminal signs and luggage trolleys changed to black and yellow “New York International Airport” while famous yellow New York taxis pulled up outside the entrance.
Check-in desks and digital displays were also converted to the fictional “Sovereign Air” airline which appears in the movie.
The shooting followed weeks of negotiations between the film’s production team and Teesside Airport staff to ensure filming went off without a hitch while the airport continued to fully operate.
Teesside International Airport Managing Director Phil Forster said: “We were delighted to welcome the cast and crew of Upgraded to Teesside Airport and it’s fantastic to see our airport in the finished film.
“We know our airport is a great location for our passengers and the fact that we can stand in as New York in a major Hollywood film shows how far we have come in transforming our terminal building into a modern and vibrant place from which even the stars want to travel.”
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “We know we have superb locations for filming across Teesside, Hartlepool and Darlington and it’s great that Teesside Airport is now also firmly on that list.
“Our airport was once a crumbling, failing business but in just the past year we have enjoyed the best passenger numbers in more than a decade, been named UK and Ireland Airport of the Year and are now starring in major movies.”
Upgraded is the latest feature film shot in the Tees Valley and comes as major drive to grow the thriving local film and TV industry continues.
Filming was supported by the North East England screen agency North East Screen.
North East Screen Operations Director Gayle Woodruffe said: The North East is home to a diverse array of world-class locations, all of which have their own unique versatility which can be easily adapted to the needs of the production filming.
“Seeing Teesside Airport transform into New York International Airport shows this at its best, and it is a real asset in our North East locations portfolio.”
North East film and TV production increased 28% in 2023, and Upgraded is the fourth time in 2024 that Tees Valley locations have appeared on screen, following feature film JACKDAW and ITV dramas, After the Flood and Vera, with further in the pipeline for the rest of the year.
Upgraded is available to watch on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide from Friday, 9 February. The trailer is available here.
Three North East Indies are entering 2024 with a bang having won their first BBC daytime commission that will see them create inserts for BBC’s popular daytime show, Morning Live.
Wander Films (Middlesbrough), Sea & Sky Pictures (Hartlepool), and Second Draft (Sunderland), were all successful with their pitch ideas and will now have their northern stories shown to a national audience. All three indies have been working closely with North East Screen over the last four years through a range of programmes and activities to support them becoming reputable broadcast-winning companies.
North East Screen’s Development Director, Lisa Laws, believes this is just the beginning of the broadcast journey for these indies. She said,
“It’s great to see the hard work of Wander, Sea & Sky and Second Draft paying dividends at last given the challenging commissioning climate we are in. So this is a real win not only for them, but for the North East.
“This shows that our North East-based indies have built strong relationships with commissioners to really understand what audiences want and expect from a show like Morning Live.
“This first step into broadcast is crucial for company growth, and I can’t wait to see what they deliver! Exciting times ahead!”
The commission opportunity has been led by BBC Daytime and Early Peak Commissioning Editor, Helen Munson, who is based in the North East. She said,
“This is a really exciting opportunity to build on and develop key relationships with indies based in the North East. I know there is such a wealth of talent here and I’m really looking forward to working with them more.”
Chloe Clover, Co Founder and CEO of Wander Films said,
“We presented five topical stories with positive messages. It was crucial that the ideas were unique yet in line with the Morning Live house style. We’re buzzing that the commissioners loved our angles, and we are now in production for TV!”
Lou Brannon, Development Co-Ordinator at Sea & Sky Pictures said,
“We’re over the moon to have been chosen for this opportunity to contribute to Morning Live on BBC One. We’d like to thank North East Screen and the BBC for allowing us to build on our previous successes with The BBC’s Small Indie Fund 2023 and North East Voices initiatives.
“Our films will cover varied topics such as ways to combat loneliness and litter picking, and will give advice, inspiration and hopefully start conversations across the nation.”
Mark Stuart Bell, Producer/Director at Second Draft said,
“We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to work alongside the BBC’s flagship morning programme. We have a real affection for the warmth and optimism that Morning Live creates, and we hope that our film brings attention to the concerning issue of malnutrition in the UK, but also leaves the audience feeling inspired by the story of one ordinary woman’s mission to solve this crisis.”
Morning Live is BBC One’s flagship daytime magazine show broadcast live from their Manchester-based studio, averaging over 1.2 million viewers. Since the new year, the show has been extended to 75 minutes from 45 minutes and strengthened its pool of on-screen presenters to include Cumbrian Helen Skelton.
Newcastle-based Shudder Films, are set to light up the international film market as they premiere their latest feature film at the internationally renowned Sundance Film Festival, which begins 18th January.
Regional screen agency, North East Screen, have supported Shudder Films through their Reach programme to employ a development producer who will scout for talent and drive their activity in the North East, with the team also heading stateside to Sundance Film Festival, a key launch pad for some of the world’s best breakthrough feature films.
KNEECAP, which shot in Ireland last year, is the story of the hip and naughty Irish language rap group, Kneecap. The film features the rap trio in lead roles, with Simone Kirby (His Dark Materials, Hidden Assets, Peaky Blinders, Jimmy’s Hall) and Michael Fassbender (X-Men: First Class, Inglorious Basterds, Shame, Steve Jobs) co-staring.
Shudder Films is an acclaimed independent film company, led by BAFTA-nominated and BIFA winning producer Jack Tarling, that has had previous success with critically acclaimed films such as Gods Own Country.
Jack has a long-term affinity with the North East, having studied at Northumbria University and regularly speaks at regional NFTS and broadcast events. He said,
“We’re excited to be working with Dermot O’Dempsey as our first point of contact for North East talent and stories. I lived in Newcastle for 12 years and look forward to further strengthening our links and bringing new productions to the region and doing more work with local talent.”
Lisa Laws, North East Screen’s Development Director said,
“It’s great to be able to support an award-winning company like Shudder Films to strengthen their base in the North East. They have an outstanding track record at major international festivals.
“We’re looking forward to seeing how Jack and his team bring their ambitious energy to the North East, providing another home for our local talent to develop creative and ground-breaking content.”
North East Screen supported Shudder Films to both strengthen their marketing and distribution strategy, and create a new development post through the Reach programme. Reach is aimed at commercially and critically acclaimed companies (both production and supply chain) wishing to develop and diversify their products and services in order to win investment and create jobs within the region. So far, almost £120,000 has been invested in regional companies, with the latest round of funding currently accepting applications. To find out how you and your business can be supported in the North East screen industry, contact the Business Development team: firstname.lastname@example.org.
After the Flood, a new series produced by Quay Street Productions, that filmed in Teesside last summer, airs on ITV1 tonight (10th of January) at 9pm.
After the Flood is a mystery thriller set in a town hit by a devastating flood. When an unidentified man is found dead in a lift in an underground car park, police assume he became trapped as the waters rose. As the investigation unfolds PC Joanna Marshall, played by Sophie Rundle, becomes obsessed with discovering what happened to him and why.
The mystery unfolds across the series while we also see the real impact of climate change on the lives of residents in this small town. The floods threaten to expose secrets, and fortunes and reputations are at stake.
The Tees Barrage in Teesside was used to film the opening flood sequence which is a pivotal plot point of the series. Filming of the series in the region was supported by the North East Screen Film Office.
On filming the flash flood at Tees Barrage, lead actress Sophie Rundle said, “It was like being on a school trip. Before that we had been filming in and around Manchester, so this was the only time we all went away somewhere. We were all giddy and excited. It is where they train all the emergency services. There’s this water course and they have control of the speed and the scale of the water. They had all these big strapping six-foot lifeguards in all their emergency gear stationed along the water course who were lovely. They said, ‘If you fall the water is going to take you but don’t worry, we’re going to save you.’ Luckily, I didn’t ever stack it, so they didn’t have to save me. It was a really exciting moment as an actress and as a woman in this industry to be the hero reaching out for the baby dressed in all my police gear with the rain going. The water was really strong, and we were in and out of it all the time. On the last day I realised my hand was shaking because I hadn’t eaten anything. I was so pumped from the adrenalin. It wasn’t a normal day at work where you do your lines, and you go home. It really made the job for me.”
On the logistics of filming the flash flood that takes place in the opening sequence of the series, Producer Juliet Charlesworth said, “When Az Saleem came on board as Director, he decided we wanted real water. We talked about using the massive wave machine in Blackpool and the water tank at Pinewood Studios. Then it was the white-water rafting centres that we’ve seen in the Olympics. We then chose Tees Barrage International White Water Centre. That gave us a man-made bowl, meaning we could have actors and crew entirely safe in the water. I had filmed there before with Wolfblood, Vera, Emmerdale and 1917 had also filmed there. You can switch the water off with four Archimedes screws, going from zero to as high as 14, creating white water rapids which you can’t stand up in. We operated on between 6 and 8 which meant you could stand in it, and it will make enough water.”
Katie Strachan, the Film Office Manager for North East Screen, who worked closely with the production, said “The Tees Barrage works amazingly well as a filming location. They have worked with a whole range of productions over the years from Hollywood blockbuster 1917 to Emmerdale and more recently After the Flood. As a location they are well versed and experienced with the TV and Film Industry, working alongside productions to offer the most creative filming solutions whilst being extremely flexible.”
The star-studded UK premiere of British action thriller JACKDAW, the feature film debut of North East-born writer-director Jamie Childs (The Sandman, Willow, His Dark Materials), will take place at the Showcase Cinema de Lux Teesside in Stockton-on-Tees on 24 January 2024.
Childs will be joined on the red carpet by the film’s stars including Oliver Jackson-Cohen (The Invisible Man, Emily, The Haunting of Hill House)Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who, The Sandman, Victoria), ThomasTurgoose (Creation Stories, The Gallows Pole,This is England) and North East actor Joe Blakemore (The Third Day).
In addition to the premiere, there will also be a special paid public preview screening of the film in tandem with the premiere screening so members of the public in the region can come along and be part of the evening. Tickets for this unique premiere preview can be booked HERE, audiences are advised to book early to avoid disappointment.
JACKDAW was shot on location in the North East of England in Hartlepool and the Tees Valley, around sites including Seal Sands, Nunthorpe, Redcar and the North Sea, filming against the backdrop of the region’s breathtaking coastlines and dramatic industrial landscapes. It also utilised The Northern Film and TV Studios, the North East’s only large-scale film and TV production facility. The film has seen significant investment from The Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority and the North East Production Fund, delivered by regional screen agency North East Screen on behalf of the North East Screen Industries Partnership (NESIP), as part of their ambitious plans to make the region one of the UK’s leading film and TV production hubs.
Gayle Woodruffe, Operations Director for North East Screen, said: “We’re delighted to support the UK premiere of Jackdaw at the Showcase Cinema de Lux Teesside. It’s right on the doorstep of all the amazing Tees Valley locations that were used in the film, so is very fitting.
“Supporting ambitious, world-class local talent like Jamie Childs is integral to the work we are doing to make the North East one of the leading UK film hubs where regional folk can live, create and work.”
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “It’ll be fantastic to welcome the cast and crew of Jackdaw to Teesside for the star-studded premiere this month and I’m certain this event will be a great celebration of our growing local film industry.
“We know our area has superb locations for TV and film productions and the success of Jackdaw shows how our investment in the North East Screen Industries Partnership is paying dividends in creating jobs and developing skills.”
Writer/Director Jamie Childs said: “I can’t wait to bring Jackdaw up to the North East for its UK premiere, and celebrate it with the rambunctious Northern souls who made it all possible.”
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TV star Robson Green meets a new set of famous guests in this refreshing second series as they discover the roads less travelled and immerse themselves in the great outdoors.
Robson Green’s Weekend Escapes showcases the North’s breath-taking landscapes, cultural heritage, and wealth of activities that are perfect for the mind and body.
Set against the backdrop of some of the UK’s most stunning scenery, this new BBC series is the perfect tonic to chase away the winter blues and will see Robson, along with family and some famous friends, appreciating a slower pace of life.
On each journey, Robson tries an outdoor activity with a different famous face as they share their favourite memories from places close to their hearts across the North East, Cumbria, Yorkshire and the Scottish Borders.
From former footballer Shola Ameobi, celebrity wine enthusiast Olly Smith, and TV personality Denise Welch, to actors Kevin Whately, Mark Benton and Tessa Peake Jones, they all join Robson for a weekend getaway they’ll never forget.
Across the series Robson hits the road in a traditional horse-drawn wagon, is in fits of giggles during laughing yoga, cruises down a canal on a narrowboat, puts his best foot forward while learning ballet in a field, and takes a scenic drive in a motorbike sidecar.
Robson Green’s Weekend Escapes has been produced by Signpost and Robson’s own production company River Meets Productions.
Commissioned by Helen Munson, the BBC’s Commissioning Editor for Daytime and Early Peak based in the North East, this 15-part series starts on Monday 1st January on BBC Two at 7pm, but subsequent episodes will be in the usual 6.30pm slot and will be stripped Mon-Fri.
North East indie, Northern Child has won a BBC Three commission for a documentary to be filmed in Newcastle, featuring BBC Radio 1 presenter Jordan North.
What’s Really in Your Vape? (w/t) will see Jordan North front his first documentary as he explores the truth behind the UK’s vaping phenomenon.
The number of young people vaping has skyrocketed in recent years. Annual sales in the UK are now worth more than £1.3 billion.
But do we really know what’s inside these vapes? What are they made of, how are they made, and where? What chemicals go into the liquid? How much nicotine’s really in them? Which ones are sold legally, which ones aren’t?
As someone who uses vapes himself, Jordan North seeks answers to all of these questions. As well as meeting scientists performing cutting edge testing on vapes, and researchers looking at the possible long term effects of vaping, Jordan investigates the problem with illegal vapes in the UK. How big is the market? Where are they coming from? Who’s selling them? And just how dangerous might they be?
Jordan North says: “I’m really excited to be back on BBC Three, I’ve always wanted to make a documentary and I’m really interested in this subject, as a vaper myself I’m desperate to know what’s inside my vape!”
Andrew Eastel, Executive Producer says: “Vaping has become incredibly popular in the UK. Not just with those trying to quit smoking, and especially amongst younger people. So, it’s more important than ever for us to have a better understanding of what’s actually inside a vape; how they are made and where they come from, the types or brands of vapes that may pose a risk, and whether there could be longer term implications for the health of people who vape? Jordan is the ideal person to help us answer these questions. He’s naturally inquisitive and open-minded – without being preachy – and as someone who vapes himself, he has a vested interest in getting to the truth.”
Nasfim Haque, Head of Content of BBC Three says: “Jordan is the perfect guide for this fascinating and insightful new documentary as he takes a deep dive into the rapidly expanding phenomenon of vaping and showcases his findings to viewers on BBC Three and iPlayer.”
What’s Really in Your Vape? will be broadcast on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer in early 2024.
What’s Really in Your Vape? (1 x 30) is a Northern Child Production for BBC Three and BBC iPlayer produced from Newcastle. The Executive Producer is Andrew Eastel, the Producer is Katie Elliott and the programme will be Directed by Simon Rawles. The Commissioning Editor for the BBC is Mark Harrison for Current Affairs.