THE University of Bolton and a substance abuse support service have teamed up to produce a gripping short film, highlighting the reality of those battling addiction.

Ed Edwards, an acclaimed writer, producer, and lecturer in creative writing at the university, initially ran a 12-week teaching course, working with experts in the field and service users, to bring everything together.

Service users from Change Grow Live, affected by their own or somebody else’s substance use, have been directly involved in the film, from the writing, to the editing and production process.

Ed said: “We are hoping for this to become a real project for people who live it and who need the continued focus, which could lead to a paid role and add to their CV.

“They are volunteering, but this could help them build a future, or even be a hobby, which has already provided service users with a structural timetable.”

The film tells the story of an addict who is relapsing, while pretending everything is okay.

This topic is something which is also close to Ed’s heart, following a period of time, where he spent time in prison on drug charges, and went into recovery in 1992.

He has since turned his life around and received national acclaim for his stage play ‘The Political History of Smack and Crack’ in 2018, and further success with ‘Scrambled’.

Ed added: “Making this film is so important because early recovery is harder for some, because it is worse when they have stopped using.

"In this film, we don’t hide away from its full reality. It’s become my life’s work.”

The film has been partly funded by the university, from the Jenkinson Fund, aiming to enhance teaching practices, or make an impact in the community.

Emerging Futures also helped by providing an actor, while the Calico Group lent a camera team.

‘Fine’ will be showcased at a special event at HOME in Manchester on November 24, from 6pm to 8pm, and will also be available to watch online afterwards.