Eelyn Lee and a group of young writers from Sheffield go on a quest to find out the meaning of Britishness. The film explores issues of identity, race and belonging through poetry, interviews and discussions.
Utilising her open approach to filmmaking, Eelyn commissioned new work from her collaborators, seeking to make the film’s study of identity a dynamic and collective one, positioning ‘Britishness’ as a concept constantly in flux. Featuring Magid Magid, during his tenure as Lord Major of Sheffield; writer Désirée Reynolds; England footballer Kyle Walker and Sheffield’s Poet Laureate Otis Mensah amongst others.
The film was commissioned by Sheffield charity, Football Unites Racism Divides and developed through a series of film, poetry and discussion workshops with young people.
To mark Windrush Day 2020 the clip below has been released. It features Leyroy Wenham talking about the Windrush Scandal and Ross Walcott responding in spoken word.
" Lee’s film Britishness (2019) complicates the often indefinable notion of ‘Britishness’. Comprising spoken word poetry, interviews, and group discussions, the work follows young writers from Sheffield as they affirm, reject, and revise their visions of national identity and grapple with the consequences of Britain’s colonial history and their own personal experiences. The film posits ‘Britishness’ as a concept that is constantly in flux, moulded by ever-changing social, economic, political and historical narratives and carrying different significance for each individual. Through this lens, Lee invites viewers to question and re-evaluate their own definition of what it means to be British. " - Marianna Tsionki, Senior Curator, CFCCA
Read a review of the film here
Featuring Spoken word artists:
Poetry Facilitator - Désirée Reynolds
Camera, Music & Ediitng - Dan Loops
Additional Camera - Richard Heap
Running Time: 57 mins / 2019
Screenings & Exhibitions inc:
Broadway Cinema, Nottingham, 2019 for ICO Screening Day [industry screening]
Off the Shelf Literature Festival, Sheffield, 2019 [premiere]
Showroom Cinema, Sheffield for Black History Month, 2019
Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Manchester Oct 2020 - Jan 2021