Steven hopes leading role will bag a Bafta for director

Actor Steven Hooper, of Todmorden, in BAFTA nominated film 'I am Nasrine'
Actor Steven Hooper, of Todmorden, in BAFTA nominated film 'I am Nasrine'

A TODMORDEN actor hopes his leading role will help a director’s silver screen debut become golden.

The film ‘I am Nasrine’, starring Steven Hooper as the male lead, has been nominated for a Bafta award in the ‘Outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer’ category.

Steven and the cast are hoping for an invitation to the prestigious awards ceremony and a chance to celebrate with director Tina Gharavi if she wins.

“Everyone is over the moon,” Steven said.

“They put so much effort into it and to get this recognition for it is great.

“We initially found out about the nomination by reading a post on Tina’s Facebook page.

“We thought it was a hoax but we checked it on the Bafta website and it was real.

“If we win the award, that would be incredible but just to be nominated is recognition of all the hard work Tina put in to pull it all together.”

Set in Newcastle, the film is based around the character Nasrine, who flees Iran after being assaulted by police and ends up living on a council estate. She meets Lee - played by Steven - who is a rough and ready Geordie traveller from South Shields, and a romance develops between them.

Steven, 29, is one of the few actors in the film.

“They used a lot of non-actors - real people in real life situations to bring the story to life as realistically as possible,” he said.

“But they wanted an actor to play the part of Lee.

“Word got out to my agent, who put me forward.

“I went for an audition and a week later I was on set filming in Newcastle.

“It was really good fun. I loved it.”

He underwent vocal coaching to develop his Geordie accent, and has received several compliments about his North East tones.

Originally from Bristol, Steven moved to Todmorden when he was six.

He joined Todmorden Operatic Youth Section and has also been part of several Todmorden Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society productions.

The Bafta awards ceremony will be held on February 10.