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UCA Film Alumni win National Film Awards 2019

UCA Film alumni Ioanna Karavela and Chee Keong Cheung have won Best Thriller 2019 for their film Redcon-1, at the star-studded National Film Awards 2019.

Ioanna and Chee’s win came on the same night as Idris Elba scored two wins for Best Drama and Best Director and Michael Cain was voted winner of the Global Contribution to Motion Picture.

Directed by Chee and produced by Ioanna, Redcon-1 is an incredibly ambitious indie action and horror‎ war film. It contains genuine and relentless fight action and real military hardware, as a crack team of soldiers must battle through a zombie-filled Britain in a race against time to find a cure. Chee likens it to 28 Days later meets The Raid.

“Our initial goal was to push the boundaries of independent filmmaking and create a film that could be a showcase piece for what we could achieve on an independent level,” said Chee.

Both alumni graduated from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) with a BA (Hons) in Film in 2004 and Ioanna is also a visiting lecturer teaching film production at UCA. Redcon-1 is their second collaboration. “University allows those creative relationships to form. There's a lot of trust involved when making a film. That goes for the whole crew. The course was important in terms of providing a solid foundation and understanding of the practicalities of making a film,” said Ioanna.

She added: “Chee is very ambitious and singular in his vision. He likes to push the boundaries. My role was to help try and realise the practicalities of the vision onscreen and work with Chee to find creative solutions. We complimented each other”.

Ioanna and Chee will continue to work together on future film projects but for now, Redcon-1 continues to pick up awards and get international recognition, picking up no less than five Awards at the HBO/CINEMAX Urban Action Showcase International Action Film Festival.

If they could offer one piece of advice to film students it would be: “Don't give up. It's a tough business but be passionate, persistent ‎and polite!” said Chee and “be yourself, persist, work hard and go for it!” added Ioanna.

Watch the trailer:

Redcon-1 is out now to buy on DVD and Blu Ray

Follow Ioanna and Chee on Twitter.