Spitfire Over Berlin is the story of a photo reconnaissance pilot’s journey to the capital of Nazi Germany and back during the Second World War and has been created by Tin Hat Productions.
Andy Burn is the writer and producer who specialises in movies set in the wartime era having previously had some success in the UK and the USA with his company’s first feature, Lancaster Skies, which partially helped fund this latest venture, he explains.
It will be premiering at the Kinema In The Woods, Woodhall Spa, on Friday May 13.
With the pandemic restrictions and lockdowns, he says the Spitfire film leant itself to a minimal, scaled-back cast and crew.
In the story, Flight Lieutenant Edward Barnes must fly a life and death mission over Berlin in an unarmed Spitfire to check if advancing allied forces are flying into a trap.
It shines a light on the pivotal role of the RAF Photo Reconnaissance Unit which was key to planning operations including D-Day and the Dambusters raid as well as spotting V1 and V2 missile sites. Many pilots paid the ultimate price – 378 were killed.
Andy says the film was conceived and shot in between lockdowns, explaining: “It had to be one main character because of the restrictions. He interacts with other people on the ground, but most of the time he is alone on a journey. He gets attacked by a fighter, shot and wounded and encounters an American bomber.”
Actor Kris Sadler plays the main role and they were limited to a handful of production crew because of restrictions on gatherings. His son Callum taught himself to do the visual effects.
Andy said: “We did most stuff outdoors. We built a centre section of a Spitfire in my garden shed. We had to take a fence down to get it out. It is currently stuck in my garage but it will come in useful for another film we are writing about the Battle of Britain which we are going to shoot in September.
“This time we worked to a budget and did not stretch ourselves. We still operate out of a bedroom.
“But it is more action-packed and a lot faster paced.”
The film will be released in six cinemas to begin with and will be available on DVD and Amazon Prime in the early summer.
You can find out which ones at www.spitfireoverberlin.co.uk
View trailer: www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_glBxypuRk