Film expresses the thoughts of Afghani boys in Leamington

A GROUP of young Afghani asylum seekers who live in Leamington and nearby areas are expressing their hopes and fears in a film they are making themselves.

Leamington creative arts company Heartbreak Productions is working with the teenage boys as part of a scheme at Bath Place Community Venture that helps them develop confidence in speaking English and gives them a chance to socialise.

The film, which will be called Hopes and Fears, has been made possible through funding from the organisation First Light and the boys, as well as appearing on screen, have worked on filming, sound and other technical aspects.

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Heartbreak’s artistic director Peter Mimmack said: “The boys express their hopes and fears in different ways. It starts off with a sense of reality, but then moves on to a dream sequence. There are fears about being deported and complications with passports and visas, but also normal teenage concerns, such as hoping they can get a decent pair of trainers, drive a fast car or become a doctor.

“Some of their language skills are good, but others are quite limited, so it’s more picture-led than being in spoken word. It’s very creative.”

Peter, who last year worked on an animation project with the youngsters, has had as much to take from the project as the boys themselves.

He said: “They have got some very interesting stories to tell and a very different cultural background.

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“Some of them don’t want to talk about the past and just want to live in the moment, while others find it helpful to express how they feel about what they have seen. Sometimes these are horrific things. But they have a lot of fun working on it and coming together.”

Hopes and Fears is expected to be complete and ready for a public screening in Leamington in the near future.

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