Real is being screened at No.6 Cinema in conjunction with Making Waves Film Festival, and will also feature a pre-screening Q&A with its director, producer, screenwriter and star, Aki Omoshaybi. (tbc)
Aki was raised in Leigh Park by foster parents, and although he now lives in London and has gone on to pursue a successful career on stage and screen – with roles in Dr Who, Midsomer Murders, The Pursuit of Love and Star Wars – when it came to shooting his own film, there was no question where it would be set.
Shot on a shoestring budget of just £50,000, Real is described as ‘an authentic and touching love story set in Portsmouth,’ focussing on the relationship between ‘well-dressed Kyle (Aki Omoshaybi) and equally poised Jamie (Pippa Bennett-Warner).’
Plans for the film’s theatrical release in spring 2020 were shelved due to the pandemic – it eventually had a limited release, but never here.
Aki is looking forward to finally showing it here: ‘Obviously I shot it down there and we've had it in theatres in London and elsewhere - but not in the place where I'm from and not in the place where I shot it.
‘I'm really happy about that.’Seeing the film’s launch swept away by lockdown had been tough for Aki.
‘It was difficult, and it was also difficult for the distribution company – when you're distributing a film you have a budget leading up to the launch, and once you've spent most of that because you think it's going to happen, once it all comes to a halt, you don't have enough money to do it all again.