17 year old film-maker releases captivating short film to build awareness of fatal genetic disease
First, Carl Mason learnt that his nine year old neighbour suffers from Niemann Pick Type C, then he raised £6000 to produce a full-scale short film to help increase awareness of the extremely rare disease. The young film-maker secured collaborative support from over 20 television and film professionals to create a film that could aid fundraising efforts and also raise medical awareness of NP-C. On 13th June, the film “IMAGINE” premieres at Stadium:MK and will then be taken to various film festivals.
Niemann Pick Type C (NP-C) is an extremely rare and incurable disease which first causes neurological decline and dementia, and eventually, death. Only 800 people around the world are known to suffer from this, the majority of whom are children who were sadly born with the genetic condition. Carl quickly learnt that,rather surprisingly, 4 out of the 50 children in the UK who suffer from the disease are from his hometown, Milton Keynes, and this inspired him to make the film. The ten-minute fictional short film tells the story of how NP-C can affect a family, taking inspiration from real-life cases whilst following the story of Millie, a little girl who suffers from the rarest subtype of Niemann-Pick Disease.
The screenplay was written by John F. McDonald, a multi-award winning screenwriter, with the careful guidance of NP-C charity Hope for Hollie, Niemann Pick UK, INPDA and Great Ormond Street Hospital. What is also particularly impressive is that this teenager secured a production team including camera, audio, editing, costume and make-up professionals who all work full-time in the film industry with diverse experience ranging from ITV's Broadchurch, Doctor Who, Shaun Of The Dead, Hot Fuzz, Channel 4 Drama, BBC Worldwide and more.
Carl said “Working with such a seasoned team has made my directing début particularly special. I very much hope that the film will inspire donations to the charities involved and increase awareness of this horrible disease within both the medical profession and public alike. Obviously it has been an extremely enjoyable project to work on, but the fact is, this is a fatal disease that barely anyone has ever heard of and I wanted to change that.”
The premiere at Stadium:MK is taking place during the Hope for Hollie Ball; an annual event that raises funds for the Hope for Hollie Foundation. For further information and photos please contact Rachael Dines, PR Consultant for IMAGINE on 07787 127624 or