Rainbow Trout Films receives support from Young Audiences Content fund to develop new drama tackling mental health

Rainbow Trout Films has today announced that they are developing a regional teen drama titled ‘The Bridge’ to challenge assumptions around those who suffer with poor mental health. The project has received financial backing from The Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF), which is financed by the UK government and managed by the BFI. The YACF supports the creation of distinctive, quality content for young audiences that entertains, informs and reflects the experiences of children and young people growing up in the UK today.

Rainbow Trout Films will attempt to provide a unique and innovative insight into how mental health challenges can feel through visual effects. The story has been informed by research and collaboration with a local mental health charity Unmasked Mental Health.

The project is inspired by a real bridge that connects two towns local to the producers, known by residents as the place where a high number of individuals lose their life to depression. The series will follow a group of teenage friends from a small Northern village who have recently finished school. As the friends prepare for their exciting new lives ahead of them, we see one of them, Harry, increasingly struggle with his mental health.

Rainbow Trout Films, Director James Mellor, formed the initial idea from conversations with Doug and Logan from Unmasked Mental Health, including their stories about mental health and the risk to one’s life. 

Producer/Director James Mellor of Rainbow Trout Films said: “I’m excited and proud to be able to have the opportunity to develop this story with the Young Audiences Content Fund I and hopefully be able to take it all the way into production. We hope it will bring the spotlight onto a very important subject and get to showcase the amazing landscapes of Calderdale in Yorkshire, these themselves being an integral part of the story.

Doug Dennison, co-founder of Unmasked Mental Health said: “Unmasked Mental Health are really excited to be working with the team from Rainbow Trout Films, really to highlight the awareness of mental health in both our local community and nationwide. I think that this project will really resonate with teenagers and get the word out about mental health and hopefully get people talking more.”

Cameron Stott, the writer said: “Even though we’re tackling a lot of serious issues in our story, it’s important that our tone isn’t always dark and that it has uplifting and magical moments too. The core of our story is a group of friends who overcome these problems together and this is often done with laughter and happiness. The locals in the Calder Valley always find light in the darkest of places and that’s the case with our show too. We follow these characters through their ups and downs and ultimately show how even though it doesn’t feel like it sometimes, the people around you will pull you out from that darkness.”


More about Rainbow Trout Films: www.rainbowtroutfilms.com

More about Unmasked Mental Health: https://unmaskedmentalhealth.co.uk

About the Young Audiences Content Fund:

Managed by the BFI, the Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF) supports the creation of distinct, high-quality content for children and young audiences to be broadcast on free-to-access, Ofcom regulated television channels and online platforms.

Financed by the UK Government as part of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s Contestable Fund, the YACF aims to provide new avenues for creators of original content and bring new voices to the market, and back content which entertains, informs and reflects the experiences of young people growing up across the UK today. www.bfi.org.uk/yacf

About the BFI:

We are a cultural charity, a National Lottery distributor, and the UK’s lead organisation for film and the moving image.

Our mission is:

  • To support creativity and actively seek out the next generation of UK storytellers
  • To grow and care for the BFI National Archive, the world’s largest film and television archive
  • To offer the widest range of UK and international moving image culture through our programmes and festivals – delivered online and in venue
  • To use our knowledge to educate and deepen public appreciation and understanding
  • To work with Government and industry to ensure the continued growth of the UK’s screen industries

Founded in 1933, the BFI is a registered charity governed by Royal Charter. The BFI Board of Governors is chaired by Tim Richards.

Producer/Director: James Mellor                       0330 088 1725

Writer: Cameron Stott                                       info@rainbowtroutfilms.com

Script Editor: Cathianne Hall                              #YoungAudiencesContentFund from @bfi

Headline Photo Left to right

Logan Smith (Unmasked Mental Health)
Doug Dennison (Unmasked Mental Health)
James Mellor (Producer/Director Rainbow Trout Films)
Cameron Stott (Writer)
Cathianne Hall (Script Editor)

Photo Credit: Danny Thompson Photography