Film a Runaway hit

FANTASTIC: Mitchell and Thomas perform in Runaways.
FANTASTIC: Mitchell and Thomas perform in Runaways.

Brothers Mitchell and Thomas Hageman are set to star in the same Hollywood film festival as legendary director Steven Spielberg and actors Sir Anthony Hopkins and Dame Helen Mirren.

Kristin School student Mitchell and his 6-year-old brother were cast in Runaways, a short film about two boys who meet an old married couple living on a farm who are soon driven to breaking point.

The brothers had early starts, were covered in mud and fake snot and had to feed pigs over the three days of filming last year.

Mitchell was spotted by Runaways' producer Alix Whittaker in a Kristin School production of Beauty and The Beast and was cast. He has also starred in several theatre shows, including Auckland Theatre Company's Oliver!

But acting for film has been an entirely new experience.

"It was just amazing because I haven't done much screen acting before.

"It was cool to get to know how the business of screen works. It's a lot different than stage," Mitchell says.

He hopes Runaways gives a boost to his career aspiration of going further as an actor, he says.

The brothers performed their own stunts under the supervision of experts, including Tom jumping out a window to "get away from the farmer".

"It was extremely good fun," he says. But feeding the pigs in one scene was gross and "the worst part", he says.

Runaways has been selected to play in the short film category in the prestigious American Film Institute's annual festival which has run since 1971.

Lincoln, Spielberg's's latest film, will premiere at the the AFI Fest.

Hopkins and Mirren star in a film based on Psycho director Alfred Hitchcock which will also screen.

The Academy Awards view AFI as a huge endorsement for the short film category of the Oscars, Miss Whittaker says.

Kiwi director Taika Waititi's Two Cars, One Night won the Short Film award in AFI Fest 2003 and went on to be nominated for an Oscar.

Runaways is up for the same award and being in the running for an Oscar is an exciting possibility, Mitchell says.

The 12 -minute movie will screen twice in November alongside eight other films.

Runaways was shot on location in Waimauku and writer/director Jordan Dodson, writer Oliver Page and Miss Whittaker all live and work in Auckland.

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Runaways (short film) - Trailer from Candlelit Pictures on Vimeo.

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