That film I mentioned is up — watch it here. It’s the most cinematic SciCast film yet, shot entirely by first-time director Joel. He’d filmed some BMX tricks on his mobile phone, and that was the extent of his previous experience, apart from devouring the most ridiculously wide range of films. He’s seen more than I have, knows them inside-out, and he’s thirteen years old.

It’s both exciting and humbling when you meet someone like Joel. It’s not that he’s done everything right: I’ve used some really sneaky tricks in my edit of his film to paper over some of the problems. But that’s not really important, because what impresses is his raw talent. This was his first film, for heaven’s sake, and we had a detailed discussion afterwards about crossing the line, continuity, and how to reduce the number of camera set-ups. All of which would have been jargon to him at the beginning of the day.

One of the things that I … ‘regret’ is too strong a word, but anyway: one of the things I’ve had to shelve with SciCast is follow-up. We go into a school, do a day’s workshop, then leave. Then what?

There are plenty of more complex education video projects, from Films for Learning through to the seriously well-funded First Light Movies, but SciCast doesn’t have the time (ie. budget) to do anything much in the way of coaxing people into them. So I guess I’ll never know what happens to Joel, which is a shame. He was great.