Young filmmaker from Sheffield wins national award

Ella Simpson with her award
Ella Simpson with her award

A talented young filmmaker from Sheffield was among the cream of young directors, screenwriters and producers from across the UK rewarded for outstanding work at the fourth annual Moving Image Awards.

Ella Simpson, 17, from Wales High School, won the award for Best Film Extract for her entry, Scarlet’s Vow; a medieval style action drama. Following the death of a loved one the protagonist, Scarlet, travels alone, fending for herself and evading capture from two mysterious figures.

As she celebrated her achievement Ella said: “I’m really interested in female rights and activism so I wanted to create an extract featuring a really empowering female lead. There are so many male-focused action films, I wanted to do something that was entirely focused on a woman who wasn’t reliant on a man. Even though the character has the option of a love interest, she doesn’t take up the offer, choosing instead to focus on her own escape.”

The Moving Image Awards, designed in partnership with and held at the British Film Institute in London, recognises and rewards the UK’s most talented student filmmakers and scriptwriters, encouraging more young people to consider a career within the film industry.

The ceremony has gained recognition from teachers and lecturers of film and media courses at institutions across the UK, as well as leading figures in the film industry. This year’s star was Kate Leys, script editor for indie hits including Slow West, Lady Macbeth and Churchill.

Kate said the young people just went for it and added: “The stories that were on show today were just extraordinary, I was so blown away. There was a huge range of talent here today. The films were funny, frightening, weird, Gothic, absolutely everything you can imagine, but it was the quality that impressed me most. I think maybe there’s something about film makers who start out older; they might hold back, be afraid or potentially embarrassed.”