UK – VFX Project – 2016

James Pout (writer)

Cross Channel Film Lab 2016 Training Workshop 1, Cornwall

In 2009, James Pout was given a fellowship by the Nipkow Programme in Berlin to research and develop a feature film.  The screenplay – A Runner – is based on the life of a German runner from the 1920s and was commended by the BAFA Rocliffe forum in 2015.   James’ short animation, The Hungry Corpse, was commissioned by the Collabor8te scheme and premiered at the Edinburgh Film Festival in 2013.  Directed by Gergely Wootsch and featuring the voices of Bill Nighy and Steven Mangan, it went on to screen at over 60 festivals worldwide, picking up some awards along the way.  It screened on Sky Arts in September 2014. .


The year is 2025.  A financial collapse has crippled economies across the world.  Renewable energy has been abandoned in favour of cheaper alternatives.  In the North Atlantic, off the coast of the Isle of Skye, a monumental discovery of gas has been made.  The largest fracking rig the world has ever seen is in its final stages of completion.  Amidst the fragile beauty of the island, a young couple are camping.  Kit is an injured soldier recovering from a suicide bomb in the Middle East.  Ada is a photojournalist who was covering the same war.  They are not alone.  Darlow, an ex-environmental scientist, now geo-engineer, is trialling Solar Radiation Management (SRM) technology.  He creates artificial clouds that reflect the sun’s heat.  And there is a more mysterious, sinister presence on the island: the Stranger is a bizarre creature that has washed up on the beach.

Darlow believes the creature is an alien and could be one of the most important discoveries mankind has ever made.  Kit, in an attempt to prove himself to Ada, hunts the creature down and captures it. Darlow is convinced it is dangerous despite it appearing dirty, cold and hungry.  Kit regrets attacking it, increasingly recognising familiar human-like characteristics in the creature’s behaviour.  It seems gentle, fragile and in awe of the world around it.  On the edge of death, it manages to speak and claims it is human … and has travelled here from the future.  Will it be able to save the earth from a massive environmental catastrophe?  As the Stranger prepares to destroy himself and change the future, Kit must risk his own life to save Ada’s.