Shane Meadows heads search for new British film talent


Shane MeadowsInspiring British director joins the Virgin Media Shorts judging panel to launch this year’s short film competition

BAFTA award winning director and screenwriter Shane Meadows has joined the line up of established film experts as head judge for Virgin Media Shorts 2013, in association with Nikon. As Britain’s biggest short film competition, Virgin Media Shorts gives undiscovered talent the opportunity to have their work shown to millions of people across the UK in cinemas, on TV and online.


Shane, who started his film making journey in 1994 by experimenting in short film, is expertly placed to help discover and inspire this year’s new wave of short film making talent. Shane is a self-taught film maker, with several feature films to his name including A Room For Romeo BrassThis Is EnglandSomers Town and the forthcoming documentary feature The Stone Roses: Made of Stone.


The news of Shane’s involvement coincides with the announcement that the competition, which has established itself as the leading platform for providing new British film talent a step up in a challenging industry, is now open for entry.


Commenting on Virgin Media Shorts, Shane said “Short film has always been very close to my heart. It’s how I learnt my trade and what has ultimately shaped what I make today, I’m archiving my shorts now and I’ve made over a 100 in nearly 20 years and still continue to do so.


“When I first started off, getting my work seen was a massive challenge. Even today the right kind of exposure for aspiring film makers is hard to come by. The internet has meant that anyone with a camera can publish their work. Virgin Media Shorts takes that a step further – offering both a credible route to exposure and the chance of receiving expert support. I can’t wait to see this year’s entries and wish good luck to everyone entering.”

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Now in its sixth year, Virgin Media Shorts utilises Virgin Media’s TV service with TiVo and online network, bolstered with screenings in cinemas across the nation, to showcase the shortlisted films to millions of people. The Grand Prize winner will receive £30,000 in funding for their next film project, along with the help and support of the BFI in its production. The public will also get their chance to crown their favourite with this year’s Nikon People’s Choice award, with the winner receiving £5000 of Nikon equipment.


Previous winners of the competition include BAFTA nominated Luke Snellin and BIFA nominated Oscar Sharp, who have both gone on to become regulars on the film festival scene. Last year’s grand prize-winner Jennifer Sheridan, whose short ‘Rocket’ featured the much loved Bowie the dog’s space ship building adventure, has submitted the script for her next film to the BFI.


Joining Shane on the Virgin Media Shorts judging panel this year are:


·       David Tennant (star of stage and screen)

·       Mat Whitecross (director of Spike Island and Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll)

·       James King (film critic and presenter of ITV2’s The Movie Show)

·       Jason Wingard (2011 Virgin Media Shorts winner)

·     Cindy Rose (executive director of digital entertainment at Virgin Media)

·       John Wright (Photographer and Nikon ambassador)



Cindy Rose, executive director of digital entertainment at Virgin Media, said “We’re delighted to have Shane on board for this year’s competition. His experience in short film is invaluable and his passion for it is infectious. With a massive back catalogue of shorts under his belt, his understanding of what makes a great film and ability to spot new talent is of great value to the judging panel and his work is an inspiration to those entering. Adding his name to the list of judges is the icing on the cake for what we expect to be Virgin Media Shorts’ biggest year.”


For more information and to enter this year’s competition visit