The Cross Channel Film Lab team will be sharing their experience of bringing screenwriters, directors and VFX specialists together to develop four diverse low to medium budget feature film projects using VFX at the BFX Festival in Bournemouth on 26 September 2014.

Join Mary Davies, Pippa Best, Paddy Eason and Josh Richards at the Bournemouth International Centre this month to hear all about the challenges of storytelling while attempting to animate barely-seen creatures of the deep, create an impossible black hole, explore ways to blend 2D and 3D worlds in a sci-fi adventure, and visualise a sea of rotating spirals as a boat pulls an island away from the land. What really happens when you experiment with technology alongside the script development process?

Moving from development into production, Christian Lett of Bait Studios will also share a case study of the company’s work on The Machine, the multi award-winning “low-fi sci-fi” thriller released this year – and a great example of how a distinctive VFX vision can be delivered on a low budget.

The sessions will also be joined virtually by directors Caradog James (The Machine), David Vital-Durand (Voice of the Deep) and Luis Briceno (Dome).

The Cross Channel Film Lab is a Franco-British R & D project that brings together VFX specialists, students and experienced feature film writer-director-producer teams at an early stage of development to collaborate on the stories and the films’ VFX vision.

For event ticket information, visit the BFX Festival website. To find out more about the Cross Channel Film Lab, visit


BFX Festival Programme details:

10.00 – 11.50 The Cross Channel Film Lab presents “When VFX Met Story”

This session looks at the development process for four of the feature films developed with CCFL, demonstrating how early creative partnerships can lead to stronger stories, a clearer vision, and more cost-effective VFX and/or animation.  All four films are in active development, continuing to draw on what they have learnt through the CCFL process so far.

Hosted by CCFL project co-director Mary Davies and Bournemouth University researcher Josh Richards, the session shares some of the R & D materials and explores different aspects of the process, including presentations from VFX supervisor Paddy Eason, writer-directors David Vital-Durand and Luis Briceno, and CCFL project co-director and script consultant Pippa Best.

12.00 – 1.00 The Cross Channel Film Lab presents “The Machine: A low budget VFX case study” with Christian Lett of Bait Studio

What happens when a VFX team works with a writer-director to respond creatively to the restrictions of delivering great VFX on a relatively small budget?

The Machine is a multi-award winning “low-fi sci-fi” thriller. VFX supervisor Christian Lett of Bait Studio, one of the key VFX companies delivering the film’s innovative low-budget VFX,  talks us through the development process and the VFX Bait created for the film.

We’re hoping that director Caradog James will also join us live by skype…



Notes to editors:

Funding for the Cross Channel Film Lab comes from the following partners, including an investment of 50% from the INTERREG IV-A programme France (Channel) – England.


  • With a budget of €173.5 million, the Interreg IVA France (Channel)  England programme aims to promote the emergence – between the French and English parties – of a space of common citizenship fostering a sense of belonging to a cross-border area, and endowed with a specific identity.


  • Cornwall Council leads the Cross Channel Film Lab Phase 2 as part of its commitment to supporting the Creative Industries in Cornwall.


  • Cornwall Arts Centre Trust (ACT) is one of Cornwall’s key creative industries organisations.  The UK partner on CCFL Phase 1, ACT leads Krowji, Cornwall’s biggest creative sector cluster, Carn to Cove (a performing arts scheme for rural communities, including film screenings), and Creative Skills (professional development support for creative industries practitioners).


  • Le Groupe Ouest is France’s leading provider of feature film script development services, serving as the French partner of the Torino Film Lab and Script & Pitch Workshops.  Le Groupe Ouest recently led an experimental programme with Pôle Images & Réseaux to explore the impact of new technologies on screenwriting and directing (see
  • Creative EnglandCreative England invests in and supports creative ideas, talent and businesses in film, TV, games and digital media. We aim to grow the brightest, the best, and those with the most promise so that individuals and businesses can achieve their full creative and commercial potential. We help identify future opportunities to grow the economy and generate jobs.
  • The Media School at Bournemouth University is the largest centre of professionally based higher education for the media and communications industries in the UK and has an excellent industry reputation.  Since 1989, the National Centre for Computer Animation has conducted research of “international significance” and pioneered “excellent” undergraduate and postgraduate courses in computer visualisation, animation and digital effects.
  • Falmouth University is a vibrant and forward-thinking specialist arts university and key player in the national and international creative scene.  A justifiable international reputation for excellence in Art, Design, Media, Performance and Writing has grown from over a century of nurturing original thinking, supported by highly talented and professional staff.
  • 3D Fovea is part of the Télécom Bretagne research centre, a leading research lab studying the impact of stereo 3D images on the viewer’s brain and the use of different 3D optical systems.
  • ISB/UBO University of Brest’s Sound for Image department is one of the best in France.  Its research lab focuses on the impact of sound spatialisation on picture perception, including the perception of stereo 3D images.
  • Artefacto researches and builds autostereoscopic systems that enable stereo 3D to be viewed without glasses, and is one of the few companies in Europe working in this applied research field.
  • Ecole Européenne Supérieure d’Art de Bretagne (EESAB) is researching interactive pre-visualisation set design, allowing creative teams to anticipate the consequences of their writing choices on the viewers’ perception.
  • Le Festival du Film Britannique de Dinard, in northern Brittany, has embodied the collaboration between the UK and France in the realm of cinema for the last 20 years and will host an annual CCFL2 showcase.

Industry partners

The Lab offers a wide range of expertise from across the film industry plus broad research knowledge and experience from its academic partners.  Consultants and mentors include representatives of companies such as Amak, Apix3D, Arte France, Bait Studio, BBC Films, Digimage, Eyes3Shut, Film Factory, ImageEyes, McGuff, Mikros, Mocaplab, Nvizible, Panavison, Peanut FX, Rushes, RVZ, Studio Canal, Tiger X, TSF, Valhalla Audio, Vertigo Films, Vision 3 and Zoptic.

Individuals working with CCFL include script consultants Yann Apperry, Pippa Best, Mary Davies and Antoine Le Bos; VFX practitioners Christian Guillon, Maurice Banayoun, Remi Brun, Ronan Bourdin, Paddy Eason, Michael Elson, Jonathan Privett and Christian Volckman; and Stereo 3D specialists Hugo Barbier, Joséphine Derobe, Francois Garnier, Chris Parks, Richard Lloyd, Martin Parsons and Thierry Pouffary.  This pool of experts will be added to as the scheme progresses, in response to the individual needs of selected projects.