Shinfield Studios opened its doors today to launch their new ‘Screen Berkshire’ scheme.

Guests heard key members of the film industry speak about the programme, and witnessed a live film set led by Academy Award-winning producer Gareth Ellis-Unwin (The King's Speech).

‘Screen Berkshire’ was awarded British Film Institute Funding earlier this year, allowing them to set about making the TV and film industry more accessible with free training programmes.

These include script writing, camera and lighting, and audio storytelling.

Director of Skills and Workforce Development Sara Whybrew said: “The UK remains one of the largest filming locations in the world. We want to grow local talent in production.”

She continued: “I can’t wait to see the people of Berkshire’s names roll in the credits.”

Local resident and producer Gareth Ellis-Unwin attended the event with both his Bafta and Oscar trophies in tow.

He greeted the crowd with an opening speech stating “Today is the embodiment of what we can achieve when we come together. Localised initiative, developing local workforces.”

He continued: “Screening Berkshire stands for a unified approach, where opportunities are not dependent on postcode, background, or social standing. Bedlam is very pleased to be part of the project.”

Mr Ellis-Unwin also took guests into a separate studio to watch a real-life film set production. The crew was made up of local students who filmed a scene from a short film.

The scene saw a young boy, with supposed supernatural powers, acting alongside a woman who played his mother.

Attendees were allowed to watch filming from a monitor whilst a 30+ crew helped with the production.

Managing director of Shinfield Studios Ian Johnson spoke to The Chronicle about the exciting things the studio has been doing.

“Major motion pictures have been filmed here recently, like Star Wars, Bridgerton: Queen Charlotte, and Ghost Busters. It was amazing to see Bill Murray sat in the director's chair.”

He continued: “We have a strong connection with the local parish, and they come in frequently. There’s a planning meeting next Wednesday to discuss building a screening room that will be used as a local cinema.”

The chronicle also spoke with Natalia Syam, a former student of the University of Reading, who has just directed her debut feature ‘Footprints On Water’.

When asked about her progression, she responded “I was a runner for years and worked my way up slowly.”

Nathalia completed a BA in film theatre and television in Reading and is now touring film festivals promoting her first feature film.