Film fans will be in for a treat next month when writer and director Harry Macqueen makes an appearance in Cumbria as the highly-anticipated Supernova movie makes its debut on the giant cinema screen at Rheged near Penrith.
The film, which stars Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci, features Keswick and the North Lakes extensively as the two central characters go on an emotive road trip through the area.
On Friday July 2, the first screening of Supernova at Rheged will be introduced by its writer and director and immediately afterwards, Stefan Escreet, a theatre and radio producer who lives in Keswick, will lead a Q&A with Harry and his actor-uncle Peter Macqueen, who lives near Keswick and is a Supernova cast member.
Supernova follows the story of Sam (Colin Firth) and Tusker (Stanley Tucci), partners of 20 years on holiday travelling across England in their old campervan. Tusker has been diagnosed with the onset of dementia, changing their lives.
As the trip progresses, their individual ideas for their future begin to collide and secrets are uncovered, private plans unravel and their love for each other is tested like never before.
Ultimately, they must confront the question of what it means to love one another in the face of Tusker’s irreparable illness.
The entire company was based on location for the duration of the film’s shoot in and around Keswick and Tucci, in real life, noted the camaraderie he found from the shared experience.
“I’d never been up to the Lake District before, and I have to say I was in awe,” said the American.
He added: “We all stayed in these holiday homes on this little river and even though it rained every day and kept getting colder and colder, to the point that it started to snow towards the end, I didn’t mind it because I loved being there!”
Harry Macqueen trained as an actor at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, before turning to film-making in 2013.
His debut feature as a writer/director/producer, Hinterland was nominated for several awards. Supernova is his second feature film as a writer/director.
Harry’s uncle Peter Macqueen is a veteran member of the Cumbrian theatre scene. With live theatre off limits, recent work has been confined to the unfamiliar digisphere.
Lockdown led to a socially distanced short film, Upper Air, followed by the The Lockdown Videos – four five-minute films adapted from his one man plays plus a monologue for Theatre by the Lake’s Assemble Here audio project.
As well as the long-awaited release of Supernova, Peter appears in two other feature films soon to be released – Wolfboy and The Creeping and is happy to say he is out touring his live one man shows again.
Moderating the Q&A, at which questions will be welcome from the floor, is Stefan Escreet, artistic director of Cumbria-based Ragged Edge Productions.
Previous to this, Stefan was associate director at Theatre by the Lake where he directed more than 40 productions.