Many film stars turn their hand to directing later in their careers but 10-year-old Holly Jacobson has got behind the camera sooner than most.
The young actor from Western Park, Leicester, has been appearing in short films since she was seven, as well as adverts for companies such as Tesco and Halfords.
But her dream all along has been to turn her own scripts into films and her first proper film is now in the running in this year's Virgin Media Shorts competition.
Holly now wants Leicester Mercury readers to vote for her film on Twitter, to get through to the competition's shortlist.
Holly used her own money to put together the four-minute story. She said: My film's about a girl and her imaginary friend and it's about how the girl moves on and the friend disappears. I didn't have an imaginary friend but I always loved the story behind the song Puff the Magic Dragon and it's based on that. I filmed it in my bedroom, in a friend's house and at the park. I really love making films because I like taking the stories from my head and making them real. There are about 800 other films in the competition but I really hope I get to the next round.
Among the people she will be up against in the competition is her dad, Ben, 39, who is a professional filmmaker, and who has recently made films for the NHS and Fire and Rescue Service. His two films both star Holly, who has also appeared alongside Girls Aloud singer Kimberley Walsh in All Stars 3D and the forthcoming Charles Dickens biopic, The Invisible Woman, starring and directed by Oscar nominee Ralph Fiennes. Last summer, Holly appeared in a back-to-school ad for Tesco and 18 months ago she featured in a Halfords advert.
Ben said: Holly's made lots of things on her iPad with her friends, but this is the first time she's made one properly with actors and other people she's met through her acting.
The film's budget was a few hundred pounds to pay for people's expenses and Holly paid half of the costs from her own money, made from her acting work.
Holly's producer, teacher and mum, Kaley, 36, home-schools her and has been nurturing her love of films.
She said: Holly's wanted to act forever and Ben and I weren't too keen at first but she joined a drama group and she's done a lot since she was seven. She's home-schooled and we let her follow her interests and she's written lots of scripts.
Holly's worked so hard at the film and we're very proud of her. She wrote the whole thing herself and rather than just using Ben's contacts to make the film she got her own friends who she has worked with in the past. To get her film into the shortlist in the competition, Holly needs people to reTweet the film on their Twitter feed.
FOCUSSED ON FILM-MAKING TO SEE FILM AND FIND OUT HOW TO VOTE GO TO... leicestermercury.co.uk
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