James McDougall is hoping for double glory at the Into Film Awards with his poignant short animation about finding your identity and hard-hitting film on tragedy and alcoholism.

James, from Shrewsbury, will be hitting the red carpet on Tuesday for the glitzy ceremony at BFI Southbank in London. The awards recognise outstanding films made by youngsters aged up to 19, meaning this was James’ last chance as since entering he has celebrated his 20th birthday.

His first film is a one-minute long stop-motion short called Identify, and stars a small wooden mannequin trying to find its identity. James studies film production at the University of Liverpool, where he and two friends in his student halls produced Identify with a budget of just £4.

James said: “I’m probably the most proud of that one. It has a really nice message. Everyone goes through something like this so I just hope that people resonate with it.”

His second film, called Underpass, was produced by James and his group at a BFI Film Academy residential programme in Edinburgh. The group was provided with the script and tasked with putting the film together around it.

“It’s about an alcoholic who has seen a tragic event happen. It’s about her coming to terms with it, and with the underlying message of her alcoholism,” said James.

This is not the first time James has made the shortlist, as a previous film he worked on at a BFI Film Academy in Shropshire was nominated in 2016. He now hopes the added years of experience will see him take home at least one prize.

“I was a bit too young to appreciate it back then, but this year is my last chance so I am really looking forward to it. Past ceremonies have included stars such as Daniel Craig, Eddie Redmayne and Simon Pegg so it’s a great deal to attend.”



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