UNIVERSITY students on Wearside are celebrating success after their short film about the impact of the war in Afghanistan scooped a national award.
Media students Samantha France and Anthony Dugdale won the Undergraduate Fiction award at the Royal Television Society Awards for producing the film Not Enough Time.
It is the first time a North East university has claimed a national award in the drama category.
The win also comes on the back of the students’ success at the regional RTS gongs in March, when they took the prize for Best Student Fiction Production.
Not Enough Time centres on grieving mum Jean, who finds a letter left for her by soldier son Tom, who is serving in war-torn Afghanistan, which reminds her of their precious final hours together.
Anthony said: “Just being nominated for a national award was an honour, so winning it was a momentous achievement for us and the rest of the team.
“This goes to show that hard work really does pay off.
“We just hope that winning the award will bring much deserved recognition to the university and the fantastic faculty that teaches there, this award is as much for them as it is for us.”
Samantha added: “It’s funny really, if you take a camera, a group of like-minded people, a great idea and maybe a couple of pints you can achieve anything.”
University of Sunderland lecturer Nicholas Glean helped to produce the emotional piece.
The programme leader for Digital Film Production said: “This award is not only a win for the students but it is a win for all those connected with media at the university, from equipment staff to lecturing staff.
“To have the best student film in the country should fill everyone with pride, I am so very proud of those students and what they have managed to achieve.
“The video and new media team has been working towards dramatic productions for the last three years, building it to the standard of our award-winning documentaries, and it’s amazing to see that our students have managed to reach this level so quickly.”
Peter Salmon, director of BBC North, presented Anthony and Samantha with the award at the ceremony, which was held at the National Media Museum, in Bradford, West Yorkshire.
To view a trailer of Not Enough Time, go to www.sunderland.ac.uk/faculties/adm/study/subjectareas/tvvideoandnewmedia/video/time/