How these empty council houses are helping out a charity
Published: Friday, 4 January, 2019
A pair of council houses in Wotton-under-Edge have had a starring role in a film made by an award winning independent film company.
The empty homes were identified as being ideal for the part by actor Chris Vowles whose day job is a Stock Condition Surveyor for Stroud District Council’s housing department.
So when film director Paul Holbrook of Bristol based Shunk Films mentioned that he was searching for a council house, Chris knew just the ones in Gloucester Street, Wotton-under-Edge.
Shunk Films paid £500 to use the empty houses which will be donated to Stroud District Council’s charity of the year, Sunflowers Suicide Support.
“We are really pleased to be able to help out with this project, and it’s fantastic that in doing so we are able to help support Sunflowers Suicide Support,” said Joe Gordon, Stroud District Council’s Head of Contract Services. ““The Gloucester Street properties have a significant amount of defects, so are currently empty as they form part of a the review for the whole site.”
The film Hungry Joe is the story of a young mother who experiences post natal depression and struggles to bond with her baby, aggravated by the fact that he is born with an insatiable appetite and stars Broadchurch actor Joe Sims.
Several of script writer and director Paul Holbrook’s films are set on council estates. He said:
“Having grown up on a council estate I don’t like the way they are usually represented in films. You can tell extraordinary stories on council estates, like we did with another of our films A Girl and Her Gun.”
Chris added “I hope the fact that Hungry Joe is set locally will mean that people in Gloucestershire will become more aware of the independent film industry. Independent films are driven more by artistic vision than the box office and they give an opportunity for actors that can’t afford to go to expensive drama schools to get noticed. “
The filming is taking place from 3-7 January, and Paul hopes the film will be completed in time to show at film festivals from March.