Sunderland actor’s war film earns Bafta nomination

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A HARROWING war film starring a Sunderland actor has scooped a Bafta nomination.

“Kajaki. The True Story” sees Thomas Davison, 23, play a soldier who, while on patrol in Afghanistan, finds himself trapped in an unmarked minefield.

FILM ROLE: Thomas Davison in Kajaki. The True Story.

FILM ROLE: Thomas Davison in Kajaki. The True Story.

After one man in the patrol detonates a landmine, blowing off his leg, his comrades rush to his rescue, only to find themselves trapped in a relic of the Russian invasion of the 1980s.

The tense thriller, from the Academy Award-winning producer of The King’s Speech, is based on the true story of what happened to 3rd battalion The Parachute Regiment who set out to disable a Taliban roadblock at the Kajaki dam in 2006.

Thomas, from Barnes, spent the summer in the searing heat of Jordan shooting the film which has been nominated in Outstanding Debut at this year’s prestigious Bafta awards.

“I play Jarhead, a medic from 3 Para,” explained Thomas. “In preparation for the role we went down to Colchester to meet the real guys who inspired our characters, who all go by their nicknames. It gave us a great insight into what happened.

Kajaki: The True Story

Kajaki: The True Story

“It was really important for us to represent them in the right light and do them justice.”

Since its release in late November, the film has been gathering pace, earning five star reviews and being hailed as “The British Hurt Locker.”

Sun columnist Jeremy Clarkson is among those to praise the film, saying “It may well be the best war film ever made.”

Now North East audiences will be able to see the film when it is screened at Cineworld in Boldon on the afternoons of tomorrow, January 18 and 20.

Former Southmoor School pupil Thomas said: “We feel so proud of the Bafta nomination. It’s a lot different to American war films, which often glorify war. This is more real and I think that’s what British films do really well, they are more real and gritty.”

Thomas, who only took up acting two years ago, says he hopes the film will open doors to other acting roles.

“My character is from Manchester in the film, so I had to use that accent, but it would be great to use my Sunderland accent in a film or TV show,” he said. “It would be great to be in something that’s filmed in the North East, like Vera.”