Solent TV drama nominated for Best British series

A TV drama created by students, graduates and staff at Southampton Solent University has been nominated for Best British series by Raindance Web Fest in the Raindance Independent Series Awards.

Originally screened on Solent TV, the University’s online television channel, ‘Til Death is a controversial and comedic tale of two neighbours united by their sleepy rural surroundings and their growing blood lust.

Written, directed and produced by Solent graduates Rob Jones, Ben Sutton and Hayley Smith, the production of the series gave fellow students and graduates the opportunity to develop the skills learned at university with real-world work experience.

Producer Hayley Smith says: “I am extremely proud that Solent TV's flagship production has gained recognition at Raindance. This large scale production wouldn't have been possible if it wasn't for the talented staff and students involved and the backing of the University, for which I am very grateful.”

‘Til Death is one the films to premier at the festival, which recognises upcoming talent within the industry and celebrates independent, new and alternative filmmakers.

Tony Steyger, Academic Leader for Solent Productions, which runs Solent TV, says: “Making a series of such high quality is an achievement by anyone's standards. That it has been produced by students and staff here at Solent University makes it extra special. I am very proud of this nomination - it is very well deserved.”

This year’s judges or ‘jurors’ of the awards include Conde Nast’s Director of Video Content, Danielle Bennison-Brown, Head of YouTube’s Next Lab Europe, Middle East and Africa at Google, David Ripert and Channel 4’s Head of All 4 and Digital Content, Richard Davidson-Houston.

Part of the Raindance Film Festival, which is Europe’s largest independent film festival, Raindance Web Fest is the UK’s only dedicated web series festival and streaming video industry networking event.

This year’s Raindance Film Festival takes place in London from 23 September in Central London, screening 100 feature films and more than 150 short films. The Raindance Web Fest is from 25 September. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT THE MEDIA OFFICE ON 023 8201 3642 or press.office@solent.ac.uk

‘Til Death

The ‘Til Death plot involves local handyman, Steve, a quiet guy and friend to everyone in his local community. But Steve hides a dark secret. By day, he is the adored neighbour. By night, he commits violent murders, ridding his perfect little town from the scum of society. Steve has a system, and the system works. But all that changes when a new neighbour, Isabel, moves in next door, and she has her own secrets too.

Solent TV

Solent TV is the latest project from Southampton Solent University’s creative community. It’s a platform to showcase the best content made by students, from short features to dramas and documentaries. This broadcasting project serves all students across the university and is an open and inclusive environment for fostering ideas and developing new opportunities.

Southampton Solent University offers more than 19,000 students over 200 qualifications ranging from HND to PhD, in subjects such as maritime education and training, fashion and design, media and television, music, health, sport and leisure, business, IT and technology. The University was awarded the 2013 Quality Assurance kitemark for quality and standards of teaching and learning. Solent was voted one of the most creative universities in the UK in a Which? University 2014 poll of students. Solent Business School has been awarded ‘Gold approval’ by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and the Small Business Charter Award, which is supported by the Association of Business Schools and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. 

Raindance Film Festival 2015 takes place from 23 September to 4 October at Vue Piccadilly, London. In its 23rd year, the festival has a strong legacy of showing alternative films and uncovering the hottest new film-makers to hit the cinematic scene. Europe’s largest independent film festival and listed by Variety as one of the world’s top 50 ‘unmissable film festivals’, Raindance aims to nurture, support and promote independent films and filmmakers from the UK and around the world. Renowned for showing alternative films and uncovering the hottest new film-makers to hit the cinematic scene, Raindance-premiered hits include Memento, Old Boy, the Blair Witch Project, Pusher, Ghost World and Love Exposure. Based in the heart of London, Raindance combines Raindance Film Festival, Training Courses, the prestigious Raindance Independent Film Awards, the Raindance Web Fest, the British Independent Series Awards and Raindance Releasing.

Raindance Web Fest is the UK’s only dedicated web series festival and streaming video industry networking event, which takes place during the Raindance Film Festival from 25 to 27 September. It features screenings and panel discussions with industry experts on topics from digital storytelling to creating the social TV experience.

For more information visit http://raindancefestival.org/

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About Us

Home to around 11,000 students studying everything from HNDs to PhDs, Southampton Solent University is dedicated to enabling learners of all backgrounds to become enterprising citizens and responsible leaders, while also promoting economic and social prosperity. Winner of the Times Higher Education ‘Most Improved Student Experience’ Award 2015, Solent is a dynamic university with strong local links and a growing network of global connections – and a reputation for developing grounded, well-prepared graduates with the skills and experience employers want. Holder of the small business charter, home to one of the world’s leading maritime training academies and voted one of the UK’s most creative universities in the 2013 and 2014 Which? University student polls, Solent applies passion and innovative practice to all its courses. Spanning business and law, the creative industries, engineering and technology, maritime, media, sport and tourism, those courses deliver a practical blend of career-focused tuition and real-world experience – giving our students the tools they need to shape their own success.

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Making a series of such high quality is an achievement by anyone's standards. That it has been produced by students and staff here at Solent University makes it extra special. I am very proud of this nomination - it is very well deserved.
Tony Steyger, Academic Leader for Solent Productions
I am extremely proud that Solent TV's flagship production has gained recognition at Raindance. This large scale production wouldn't have been possible if it wasn't for the talented staff and students involved and the backing of the University, for which I am very grateful.
Hayley Smith, Producer