Boys from The London Nautical School (LNS) and Lambeth Academy (LA) took part in a pan-European (and beyond) film production programme originally conceived by Alain Bergala at the Cinémathèque in Paris where it has flourished for several years. One of the distinguishing features of this film project was its focus on the language of film. A yearly curriculum centres on one aspect of cinematic ‘grammar’, be it camera movement, colour, light, depth of field or the more conceptual – hiding/revealing (montrer/cacher) – as was this year’s theme. With professional film-maker, Emma Sullivan, as their mentor the students experimented with a few highly structured film exercises which were then posted on the blog and also on the French blog.
Ultimately, after two terms, the participating primary and secondary schools (from Spain, France, Italy, Portugal, the UK & Brazil) submitted a film of up to 8 minutes which interpreted and captured the relevant theme conceptually and cinematically. Over three days in June 2011 the films were screened at the Cinémathèque, attended by the students who made them. On many levels, the project is ideal for the purposes of examining the impact of media production on young people’s social and cultural participation as well as on their creative and critical engagement.