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Adults With Learning Difficulties Crowdfund to Make Murder Mystery Movie

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In Aylesbury, U.K., a group of adults with learning difficulties are filming a short murder mystery flick — and they’re turning to Kickstarter to fund it.

“Adults with learning difficulties and special needs are one of the least supported groups in the U.K.,” the film’s campaign page reads. “Once people pass the age of 18 the provision and funding fades out.”

That’s where London-based theater and film company Creating Freedom came in.

Partnering with a local support group, “I Have A Voice Too,” Creating Freedom writer-directors Siggi Holm and Maya Lindh of Simple Life Productions recruited a handful of adult actors with a variety of learning disabilities to be cast in the 25-minute “The Fortunate Mr. Spencer.” The film’s Kickstarter teases the film, featuring “an English Country House… perfect manners and starched shirts… the tinkle of glass and creaking of doors… tension, passion, mistrust and suspicious glances.”

Production of the film, which started in 2014, ground to a halt twice after funding fell through. So far, they’ve raised about 70 percent of the $4,213 they need to roll tapes for three more days of work on location. Kickstarter has tabbed the film a “Project We Love.”

Writer-director Holm said he’s observed a measurable difference in his cast.

“It has been amazing to follow the actors from when we first started doing our drama classes to where they are now and see how much they have grown as actors, having gained so much more confidence,” Holm told The Mighty in an email.

If the film is fully funded on Kickstarter, Holm said he hopes to screen it at a local theater and at various film festivals worldwide.

The Kickstarter campaign for “The Fortunate Mr. Spencer” is open for donations until Monday, June 6. The project also has a Facebook page.

Originally published: June 3, 2016
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