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Get ready for a Zombie takeover at the Key Theatre in Peterborough on Monday July 4 and Tuesday July 5 as the new city based movie Zombies in Tha Hood finally hits the screen…

A British indie comedy directed by Leon Mitchell, written by Ross Strowthers and shot in the city of Peterborough, Zombies in Da Hood tells the tale of a nasty government plan to rid society of benefit scroungers and those nuisance ghetto kids but bad luck for them as their cunning plan doesn’t quite work out. Expect a mad, mad, mad scientist, lots of positivity in the form of beats, irony and plenty of jokes for this cool British production showcasing raw and local talent.

ESP’s Anna Ruggiero caught up with the film’s director Leon Mitchell to find out more and just how he brought a group of people together to create something really special…

AR: What was your inspiration behind the film?

LM: “I want to make people laugh and take them on a wild journey and the projects I produce are based around real life subjects and are drama based, so making a British comedy was appealing and good timing too.


How did you fund the film?

“In total the film and project cost around £50,000 and was independently funded with some sponsorship from UCA (Uniting Creative Arts) and a donation from Henley Festival.”

Do you think this will pave the way for other projects of this nature in Peterborough and what does it mean to the city?

“I really hope so!There are a lot of talent people in the city and a lot of scope for filming so I’d encourage all up and coming film makers to get out there and create something.

“I think it means a lot to Peterborough asit’s the first time a feature film has been shot entirely in the city using a large amount of local cast and talent.

“It’s also a great example of how a group of people can come together and make something really special.”

Has it all gone to plan? Any last minute panics?

“If I’m honest, the entire film was what I call ‘a grind’ as we faced so many challenges with things like the weather, the cast working around their other life and work commitments, access to areas – the list goes on. The problem is the world is health and safety crazy, so the biggest problem faced was location.

“We faced all of these problems for many months but once you get past all that, the city is a great landscape to film in.”

Just how much effort goes into producing a film like this? Will there be a sequel?

“The idea of a sequel is fun and very appealing and we learnt so much about making a comedy through this process, so if we did one, I feel we could actually make it even better. Although this year we are starting a new film, it’ll be a much more complex narrative based around social breakdown and survival. As an author and film maker my passion lies within a more dynamic storyline.

“The effort that goes into a film is just incredible and sometimes overwhelming which is often down to financial pressures and limitations. On low budgets you have to constantly compromise and have a team and cast who are committed to the end. Everyone starts off excited and motivated, but only a few make it to the end with the same amount of dedication;it’s a bit like a marathon!

Tell me about Louis Smith and his cameo appearance.

“Louis is a good friend of the film writer (Ross Strowthers) and he agreed to do a cameo and play a small part. This was great for the film as it’s bringing together success from the city and helps open up new opportunities for others.”

We can check the film out at the Key Theatre in Peterborough and where after that?

“The Key Theatre premiere is more for the city and the cast/crew. Following on from that, it will go out to the film festivals and entered into the BAFTAS. We can’t do a full release until that process has happened. Once it has we will then do a release edit for the film and send it out for general release and the likes of Netflix and iTunes.”

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