Lloyd Eyre-Morgan’s short film Closets won Best British Short at the Iris Prize Festival in 2015, and now plans are afoot to turn it into a feature-length movie. Those plans have moved forward with the news, via Attitude, that George Sampson is set to appear in the film.
Sampson is best known as the teen dancer who won the second series of Britain’s Got Talent back in 2008. Since then he’s had success as an actor in the likes of Waterloo Road, Mount Pleasant, Emmerdale and featuring in Eyre-Morgan’s recently complete horror short, Kill Pill.
The original Closets short featured Tommy Knight (Waterloo Road, The Sarah Jane Smith Adventures), Ceallach Spellman (Cucumber) and Julie Hesmondhalgh (Coronation Street) in the tale of a teenager in the 1980s worried about his sexuality, who magically gets transported to 2016 when he goes into his closet, where he meets another teenager who has issues of his own.
23-year-old Sampson comments, “Everyday in the news I see reports of young people being bullied for who they are and what they believe in, with sometimes devastating outcomes. Closets is important to get involved in to show young people struggling with any sorts of bullying that there is hope and support out there… As a dancer I was bullied, people would assume that I was gay, as dancing was a ‘gay’ thing to do… but it had nothing to do with sexuality. Jealousy was the real issue and everything they said to me actually spoke volumes about them as a person, and not me. My dancing has been amazing for me, and I’m laughing because I stuck to it. Basically they can go and f*** themselves!”
Eyre-Morgan adds that he hoped the film will stand as “A beacon of hope for young people or anyone that’s ever experienced hate”, adding it “mixes the heart of Billy Elliot with the passion of Pride”.
The movie is currently in pre-production.