Background to Goodbye Sunshine

The scourge of knife crime both in London and throughout the UK is an issue that seemingly has no end. That so many young people are drawn into carrying knives and gangs and killing each other is a devastating indictment of our society and – a tragic waste of lives. Of young human beings who are full of potential. Who are loved and treasured by their mothers and fathers and brother and sisters. Who, all too often, do not get beyond their teenage lives; do not enjoy life’s journey of romantic love; close friendships full of laughter; the challenges and fulfilment of work; and, quite simply, the sheer joy of living.

The answer to this problem is obviously multi-faceted – more community mentoring, outlets for young boys and girls in sport and music, harsher sentences for carrying knives and so on. But also, in education. By inviting young boys – for it is mostly boys – to reflect on the consequences of these deaths on their family. I will never forget how, teary-eyed, a prisoner I once met, said: “If I’d known how my action would destroy my Mother, I would have never done it.” And he lived…

Nor will I ever forget the phone call I received from my mother on January 4 this year telling me that my dearly-loved older brother had, out of the blue, died. The vortex of pain and shock into which one is drawn almost defies words.

But from this moment, I understood that terrible, terrible life-changing moment that all families, who unexpectedly lose a loved-one experience. I vowed to make some thing positive out of this experience and dedicate it to my brother.

It is a powerful and moving film and we hope to get some up and coming TV/film actors on board.

Of course, a short film is not a silver bullet: I know it is only a small piece of a bigger puzzle, but if it can open the door to reflection, and help just one young boy turn away from knives, then it will have been worth it. And, fingers crossed, a well-known footballer will add a message to camera, at the end of the film.

The film will also be subtitled in French and Spanish and posted on YouTube.

I’m seeking to raise about £40k from interested parties such as schools, football clubs, past students, colleagues and friends – anyone, in fact, who is concerned about this terrible problem. I will be contributing some of my own money. Any funds left over from producing the film, will be channelled into charities that are campaigning against knife-crime or similar. I have set up a page on GoFundMe: Goodbye Sunshine Film, if you would like to donate there. Alternatively, please contact me directly to make a bank transfer to the business account of my production company.