Independent producers Third Films have announced a crowdfunder.co.uk campaign to support the Autumn release of Light Years, the feature debut from BAFTA award winning writer and director and acclaimed photographer, Esther May Campbell.

A poetic and startling story of loss, hope and the deepest of human connections, Light Years also marks the feature acting debut of singer/ songwriter Beth Orton, currently touring the UK on the back of the release of her most recent album Kidsticks.

One hot summer’s day Rose (newcomer Zamira Fuller), longs to see her mum (Orton) but nobody will take her.  Her father (Muhammet Uzuner), struggling to cope, disappears to work, her sister (Sophie Burton) waits to meet a boy on the local golf course and her brother (James Stuckey) is preoccupied at home communing with spirits online.

 Taking destiny into her own hands she sets off alone deep into England’s forgotten edge lands to reach her.  Rose’s odyssey provokes her disconnected, fractured siblings and parents into a poignant reunion to face their challenges together.

Written and directed by Bristol-based Campbell, who won a Best Short Film BAFTA Award in 2009 (for September), Light Years also features an original soundtrack by Canadian musician Eric Chenaux.

Audiences now have the chance to support Light Years UK release through a crowdfunder.co.uk campaign by pre-buying tickets to screenings and Q+As across the country, pre-ordering DVDs, purchasing limited edition prints by Campbell and other exclusive items through www.crowdfunder.co.uk/lightyears

Light Years was supported with both development and production funding by the BFI and Creative England.  Finite Films and Third Films also put production funding into the film and The Match Factory are handling international sales.  Light Years received it’s world premiere at the Venice International Festival in 2015 and its UK premiere was at the London Film Festival where it was the only UK film to be nominated for the Sutherland award.

“We’re reaching out to film lovers and audiences to get involved in the release of Light Years in the UK,” said producer of Light Years Samm Haillay.  “With your support we will be able to bring Light Years to your local cinema and be there ourselves for film-maker Q+As.  Our Crowdfunder campaign is an exciting and unique opportunity be involved in raising the profile of this very independent and beautiful British film.”

Crowdfunder.co.uk Head of Partnerships Oliver Sleeman said, “We are honoured to have Light Years crowdfunding the release of their beautiful British film, reaching out to the UK to engage, inspire and include film-lovers.  Creating The Film Crowd campaign in partnership with Creative England and We Are The Tonic means we can support Light Years– and other British film projects by enabling them to put themselves in the spotlight, not only of the crowd, but of the film industry as a whole and at the same time, raise the funds they need to make their films a huge success.”

Ben Roberts, Director of Lottery Film Fund at the BFI said, “For those who like to discover and support new voices and talent in film, Light Years is a dream.  We have loved working with Esther and her team on the road to making her debut feature – and it’s so fitting that the UK release is giving audiences the opportunity to join the journey now through the Crowdfunder  campaign. “

Creative England’s Senior Executive, Development and Production Paul Ashton said: “It is no longer enough for a film to be distinctive, beautiful or even from an award-winning filmmaker. Film’s need to find their audience in a complex, fast-changing and crowded marketplace. And they need to use innovative ways of reaching and engaging that audience. Creative England is delighted to support Light Years further through the pilot FilmCrowd partnership. We hope a film like this can truly connect with its audience in the big screen experience for which it was always imagined.”