A Dream Opportunity: Get your Foot in the Door with major feature film shooting in Wales

Aspiring Welsh creatives and crew will learn valuable skills on the set of a major new film production with Ffilm Cymru’s biggest ever Foot in the Door programme.

Dream Horse is the true story of one woman’s extraordinary dream to breed and raise a champion racehorse on the allotment of her forgotten Welsh village - and of how she brings her entire community with her. Toni Collette (Hereditary, Velvet Buzzsaw, About A Boy) will take the role of Jan, while Damian Lewis (the upcoming Once Upon A Time in Hollywood, Billions, Homeland) will play Howard Davies, the local accountant she persuades to join her in running the racing syndicate.

The film has been written by Neil McKay (The Moorside, Mo, Appropriate Adult) and will be directed by Welsh filmmaker Euros Lyn (Happy Valley, Kiri, The Library Suicides). Dream Horse will shoot across south Wales this spring, and Ffilm Cymru are working in partnership with Raw Productions to offer up to 25 free training placements and on set shadowing opportunities through their Foot in the Door programme.

Director Euros Lyn comments: “I’m delighted that Dream Horse can work with Ffilm Cymru on Foot in the Door to ensure that people from all walks of life can get a taste of whether a career in the creative industries is for them. We’re living through exciting times in Wales, making more films and TV than ever before and with that comes lots of exciting opportunities.”

For people that are over the age of 18 and not currently in employment, education or training, Foot in the Door offers the opportunity to spend a week learning valuable new skills and applying existing transferable skills to kick-start a career in the creative industries and beyond. Trainees receive guidance, advice and mentorship from industry experts, as well as support for travel, accommodation and childcare where needed thanks to Ymddiried bursaries supported through the Welsh Broadcasting Trust.

Ffilm Cymru manage the programme in partnership with community housing associations across Wales - Pobl, Tai Calon and Grwp Cynefin - to ensure the programme is rooted locally and builds upon trusted relationships and existing support mechanisms.  Trainees share their stories and successes, inspiring others in their local community.

Film4, Ingenious Media and Ffilm Cymru Wales are financing the Dream Horse feature from Raw Productions, with Warner Bros to distribute in the UK and Cornerstone Films will handle international sales and distribution. Katherine Butler (American Animals, The Imposter, Frank, Starred Up) will produce with Tracy O’Riordan (The Selfish Giant, Dark River, The Arbor). Executive Producers are Piers Vellacott for Raw, Daniel Battsek and Ollie Madden for Film4, Peter Touche and Stephen Dailey for Ingenious Media and Pauline Burt for Ffilm Cymru Wales.

Previously, Ffilm Cymru’s Foot in the Door training programme secured production placements on Gareth Evans’ Netflix film Apostle starring Dan Stevens and Michael Sheen, Severn Screen’s crime drama Craith / Hidden, which screened on S4C and BBC Cymru Wales last year.

Callum Davies from Llandysul recently completed a Foot in the Door training placement on the set of hit S4C drama Keeping Faith and says this “has been an experience of a lifetime. It’s boosted my confidence a lot.” Fellow trainee Elinor Mahoney adds “Just go for it, apply! Don’t let your status or your experience hold you back.”

Following his Foot in the Door placement on Apostle, Norman Porter from Wattsville has started his own painting and decorating business, which he now runs in between jobs building and dressing sets for film and television productions such as Craig Roberts’ forthcoming film Eternal Beauty, which stars Oscar-nominee Sally Hawkins and David Thewlis. “On Eternal Beauty I’ve been using my painting and decorating skills to prepare the sets; those kinds of transferrable skills are so important on a film production,” he says. “Without this initial experience we’ve had from Ffilm Cymru, it would have been a much more difficult, if not impossible, thing to achieve.” 

The deadline for applications to Foot in the Door is midday on 3rd April. Find out more information and apply at www.footinthedoorwales.com