The Christmas Candle lights up local screens

The Christmas Candle, the latest Manx-made film by Isle of Man Film and Pinewood Pictures, has arrived to the Island’s cinemas. The Broadway Cinema at the Villa Gaiety Complex showed a special preview screening on Sunday 8th December, and will be showing more matinee screenings on Sat 14th December and Sunday 15th December. Ring the Villa Marina Box Office for more information on (t) 01624 600555 or visit

Films in Peel will be screening the magical Christmas story for one night only at Peel Centenary Centre on Wednesday 18th December – tickets have now sold out.

The Christmas Candle is a timeless and inspirational story based on the novel by bestselling author, Max Lucado. Starring Samantha Barks (Les Miserables) and Susan Boyle, the film tells the story of a sceptical young priest (played by Hans Matheson) who learns that miracles do exist, during the most astonishing Christmas the town of Gladbury has ever seen. Filmed at Island Studios in Jurby in March of this year, The Christmas Candle has a wonderful supporting cast including Lesley Manville (Maleficent, Midsomer Murders), James Cosmo (Braveheart, The Chronicles of Narnia), and John Hannah (The Mummy, Four Weddings and a Funeral).

Isle of Man Film’s Mike Reaney said: “The Christmas Candle will be a seasonal classic. The film has a universal message and a lot of heart which audiences will love, especially during the holiday season.”


Film Festival Winner Goes to Pinewood

Filmmaker Rory Dorling has received a personalised tour of the Pinewood Studios facility in Buckinghamshire. The visit was part of the top prize awarded to Rory at this year’s Isle of Man Film Festival, organised by Mannin Shorts.

Rory Dorling, whose film Paper Journey won prizes for the Non Fiction and Best Overall categories was personally escorted around the state of the art film facilities and TV stages by Pinewood’s Communications and Public Affairs Manager Mark Hamilton.

During the visit Rory was introduced to Ian Tapp (AMPS), Pinewood’s rerecording mixer and BAFTA and Academy Award winner for Slumdog Millionaire. Ian demonstrated to Rory Dolby® Atmos™, a revolutionary new audio technology, at Pinewood’s Powell Theatre. This was followed by a visit to the 007 Stage, Europe’s biggest soundstage at 60,000 square feet to see crew rigging the set builds for Cinderella, Disney’s first-ever live action feature directed by Academy Award®-nominee Kenneth Branagh. Finally Rory visited the Underwater Stage, Europe’s first studio-based underwater filming stage and which was used for some of the incredible underwater shots in mega-blockbuster Skyfall starring Daniel Craig. Rory said about his visit:

“To have the opportunity to see the world’s best studio in action was incredible. To see some of the amazing facilities was inspiring and re-iterates my desire to make it in this competitive industry.”

Mike Reaney, Isle of Man Film said: “Rory has consistently demonstrated his talent and determination for filmmaking, having twice won the Young Filmmaker of Mann award previously and with the awards at this year’s Isle of Man Film Festival. Rory is destined for a major career in the industry, so to be able to visit the UK’s leading studios close-up is invaluable experience for him. We thank Pinewood Group for organising this very special opportunity and Mannin Shorts for running the festival competition.”


Free screenings for schools at the Broadway Cinema as part of the National Youth Film Festival 2013

Two screenings, free to schoolchildren classes and their teachers, are to be held at the Broadway Cinema Douglas on Tuesday October 22nd 2013 as part of the National Youth Film Festival (NYFF). They are:

THE GRUFFALO (Cert:U) Shown at 10:00 hrs, and;

FROM UP ON POPPY HILL (Cert:U) Shown at 13:00 hrs

Both screenings are held as part of the National Youth Film Festival (NYFF) 2013 which takes place across Britain during October. Sponsored by the British Film Institute and Film Nation, a UK based charity, the National Youth Film Festival aims to:

• Encourage and develop young audiences for cinema

• Provide young people with new and exciting opportunities to watch, understand and make film

• Give young people a strong voice and involve them in the process

• Celebrate young people’s film making and engagement

• Have a long-term impact of increasing paid-for admissions

• Build respect for intellectual property (IP), explore IP issues and communicate IP messages

• Grow film skills amongst young people and adults

Mike Reaney, Isle of Man Film said:

“Film is an integral part of Manx culture, and a very important part of our economy so we need to engage our young people as early as possible. Isle of Man Film are proud to support film education initiatives for our schools.” Teachers should reserve seats as soon as possible at The reservation system is open now and spaces are limited.


Filmclub on the set of The Christmas Candle

Local high school student Michael Smedhurst visited a film studio on the Isle of Man in March 2013 during the filming of The Christmas Candle, where he interviewed the stars of the film and toured the set. Michael got his opportunity as a member of Filmclub, which operates across most schools in the Isle of Man. See his report video here:


Young FilmMaker of Mann Competition 2013 now open

This year’s Competition is open to anyone 18 years and under to demonstrate their talent for filmmaking. Category winners receive £100 and the overall winner receives £200 and trophy. Application forms available at and more information from Jan Cowan on 694596 or[email protected].


Pinewood signs Chinese Joint Venture Agreement

Pinewood Shepperton plc, a leading provider of services to the global film and television industry, today announced that the Group has entered into a 50:50 Joint Venture Agreement with Seven Stars Media Limited (“Seven Stars”), part of one of China’s leading private media groups which provides content creation and distribution, media services and events. The joint venture, to be called “Song Lin”, initially will assess a number of business proposals in the growing entertainment market in China. Under the terms of the joint venture, Pinewood will provide its expertise with limited capital investment.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron said: “It’s great to see Pinewood Studios expanding its business with the announcement of its joint venture with Seven Stars Media. The creative industries are a rapidly growing area of China’s economy and will increasingly provide huge opportunities for UK companies competing in the global race. Pinewood is leading the way, taking advantage of China’s thriving entertainment and media sector and building on Britain and China’s growing trade relationship.”


Sam Barks starts work on The Christmas Candle

Filming commenced last week on The Christmas Candle, due to arrive on the Isle of Man in late March. The Christmas Candle is a charming festive story about miracles both ordinary and extraordinary, set in rural England 1890.

A lead role had been landed by Samantha Barks, the talented young Manx woman who shared the stage at this year’s Oscars with the rest of the Les Miserables cast, including Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe. Other cast in The Christmas Candle are Susan Boyle, John Hannah, Hans Matheson, Lesley Manville and Sylvester McCoy (Doctor Who). The film will be directed by John Stephenson, who visited the Island in 2003 to make Five Children and IT starring Eddie Izzard and Kenneth Branagh. Samantha’s profile has been on a steady rise since making her name on BBC’s I’d Do Anything.

Samantha said: “Having just landed from the Academy Awards I had an hour to unpack and repack and get to set. I’m very excited to be part of The Christmas Candle and I’m loving every second.” The Christmas Candle is a timeless and inspirational story based on the novel by bestselling author, Max Lucado. Nothing out of the ordinary ever happens in the small village of Gladbury — except at Christmas. Legend has it that every twenty-five years an angel visits the village candlemaker and touches a single candle. Whoever lights the Christmas Candle receives a miracle on Christmas Eve. But in 1890, at the dawn of the modern age, all that is about to change. With the arrival of David Richmond, a skeptical, young minister, Gladbury’s humble candlemaker, Edward Haddington must fight to preserve his family’s legacy. When the Christmas Candle goes missing, the miraculous and the human collide in the most astonishing Christmas the town of Gladbury has ever seen.

Laurence Skelly MHK, Member for Department of Economic Development with responsibility for Film and Media said: “I’m pleased our recent partnership with Pinewood Shepperton continues to deliver quality productions to the Island. We all know that every film made here uses our local talent and skills, but on this occasion we are extremely proud that the Manx talent will be on-screen as well as off-screen! More importantly, it offers local businesses another opportunity to benefit from local spend – accommodation, retail, transport, facilities – towards the end of the off-peak tourist season.”

Isle of Man Film’s Hilary Dugdale added: “The Christmas Candle marks our 102nd production made since 1995. It is a truly uplifting story which has the makings of a seasonal classic and we hope it will be ready for December 2013.”