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British film about 11-year-old's quest to recover stolen bike nears crowdfunding goal (+ video)

The Bicycle Thief, due to be shot in Essex next month, is from award-winning directors behind 2015's Common People...

A British film that tells the story of an 11-year-old girl’s efforts to recover her bicycle after it was stolen is close to achieving its crowdfunding goal.

The script for the short film, called The Bicycle Thief, has won Directors UK's Challenge ALEXA 2018, which will give the team behind it access to state-of-the-art equipment to put it into production.

First, however, they have to raise £6,000 to cover other costs associated with the production, and are currently three-quarters of the way to hitting that goal on Indiegogo.

The campaign on the crowdfunding website is halfway through its two-week run and closes on Friday 30 March.

Southend-on-Sea Council has provided a bursary to meet location fees, and the film is scheduled to be shot there and in Leigh-on-Sea over two days on 4 and 5 April.

The tight schedule reflects the rules of the challenge, which this year has the theme ‘Delight’ and the film is scheduled to premiere before Directors UK on 30 April.

In their pitch on Indiegogo, they say:

The film opens with an introduction to our heroes, an adorable eleven-year-old girl and her trusty BMX-style bike. The opening montage - legs pumping, axle spinning, spokes sparkling in the sun – takes us along for the ride as she bombs down hills and hurtles along the cliff-side paths. When the sequence ends with a freeze frame of our heroine - ruddy cheeked with her hair billowing in the wind – it’s a picture of pure youthful exhilaration. More ominously however, she shares this frame with the film’s title: The Bicycle Thief.

As the title suggests, the events that follow will test our heroine’s resolve and innovation, tempering that initial joy with more dangerous challenges that result in an unforgettable adventure. Based on the response to the script from Directors UK and our crew we believe that The Bicycle Thief is a film that will charm audiences with a combination of youthful exuberance, gorgeous imagery, a thrilling chase sequence and a couple of unexpected twists in the tale.

Featuring Maisie Thorn as the bike’s owner, the film is co-directed by Kerry Skinner and Stewart Alexander, who also wrote the script, and the Essex-based couple previously collaborated on the award-winning 2013 film Common People, set near their former home on London’s Tooting Common.

Simon has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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