Former teen father turned filmmaker debuts his short biographical film on BBCiPlayer
and live on Freeview channel 276
Local director and filmmaker Nathan Glendenning, 28, from South Shields has made a film exploring teen pregnancy, named The Deafening Silence. The three minute film will premiere on BBC iPlayer at 12pm on September 23.
We spoke to Nathan to find out more about what the film means to him and why it’s important to represent the North East.
Please tell us about your career so far as a filmmaker and director?
I’ve worked in the industry for seven years, firstly as an assistant director and then a producer. As a director I have created a number of short films, all which make social commentary and quite often shot up in the north. Some films have gone on to win awards. We have a short named The Boneyard featured in South Shields museum as part of the heritage exhibition.
Why did you decide to make The Deafening Silence?
The Deafening Silence comes from my own personal experience as a teenage father. I have waited a while to tell this story, as I was still growing and maturing as a filmmaker. I wanted to capture the essence of what that experience was for me. To really motivate discussion on a rather taboo subject. I think it’s quick to make judgement on someone involved in this situation and often forget that these are children dealing with something incredibly difficult. Quite often those affected are branded in a certain way and many don’t take the time to check on them and see how they are coping. This film is a testament to that moment, to show how quickly that situation becomes blame rather than creating a support system.
Why was it important to you to represent and film the North East?
The film felt like it needed to be filmed in the North. I feel strongly about telling local stories that we can engage with and shine a light on. This story was inspired by a lot of the difficulties families face here. I also feel strongly that there needs to be more film work up here. Being able to use some of the beautiful backdrops of the North East was exciting.
What are your future plans for the film and for yourself?
Now that the film is going to be on BBC iPlayer, I’m already looking to what is next for me. I’m keen to continue telling stories that have meaning and social commentary. I have a few ideas up my sleeve and I’m excited to keep representing the North.