Nuneaton-born film director Gareth Edwards recorded a short welcome and well-done message for the finale of Marston’s Beer Town Film Festival, held at the weekend.

His message was shown just before his own critically-acclaimed film, Star Wars, Rogue One, was shown to the outdoor cinema audience in the historic brewery setting at Marston’s, Burton Upon Trent.


Marston's film festivalJack Hale (winner of the Burton Mail People’s Choice award), Matt Daunt (winner of the best advertising and promotion film and overall festival winner), Nick Jones (winner of the best short fiction film) and Jade Fovargue (winner of the best home-grown film)


Festival organiser, Elliot Allison, managed to make contact with Gareth a few weeks before to ask for his support. He said: “We chose Star Wars Rogue One, not only because it is a fantastic film, but also because of its British film-making credentials: a Midlands-born director with many British actors.

“We were thrilled when he agreed to support the evening with his video message. He’s in LA at the moment so when it pinged into my inbox at 3am the day before the finale we couldn’t have been more excited. I hope he is an inspiration to our finalists.”

The message went as follows: “Hi, my name is Gareth Edwards and I’m the director of Rogue One, the film you’re about to watch. I would say that it is a real honour that you all turned out to see this movie, but I know deep down that your just here for the beer, which is fair enough!

“But also, I want to add my congratulations to all the winners for Beer Town Film Festival, and if you didn’t win but you’re a runner-up I’d also like to say — don’t blame me, I was not a judge in this competition!

“And to be honest I think you were robbed, but, hey, I hope you like the movie and if you don’t just drink some more beer, there’s lots of Marston’s beers available.” He added: “May the fermentation be with you!”

Earlier that evening, a Nottingham-based film maker was awarded the first ever Hop D’Or at the finale of the national film competition organised by Marston’s Brewery. Matt Daunt won the best promotional and music film category for Bluehis music video for the Nottingham-based singer/songwriter Rob Green. That then went on to be chosen as best overall film for the festival. Other awards were given for best fiction, documentary and animation, with special awards for best home-grown talent and best young filmmaker.

Marston’s marketing manager, Joanne Wyke, said: “This is our first year for Beer Town Film Festival and we have been thrilled with the reaction from film makers, astounded by the talent, and excited to recognise and reward the finalists and winners celebrating craftmanship, creativity and emerging talent. Gareth’s message was the icing on the cake!”

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