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Can Heist Video Demonstrates Benefits of Can Recycling

We are all aware of our responsibilities when it comes to recycling certain materials. Provisions for collecting paper, cardboard, food packaging, certain plastics, glass and more are now in place throughout the country, and many of us have got into the habit of recycling as part of the daily routine.

Cans are another easily reused item, but how much thought do any of us give as to what happens to it once it’s thrown into the recycling bin?

That’s exactly the question posed by Can Makers, a UK trade body that works closely with can manufacturers nationwide to promote their use and to ensure effective communication throughout the industry. The query was posited in the form of a film competition, with students across the country invited to create a short film based around the title “Myth Busting – What Happens to your Can When its Recycled?”

A number of high quality entries were whittled down to a final few by a judging panel that included Craig Stevens (Sky Movies presenter), Geoffrey Macnab (The Independent’s film critic) and the chairman of UK Can Makers, Geoff Courtney.

Prizes were awarded for different category winners, including:

–          Most Creative (£500 prize): The Adventure of the Lonely Can by Wade Bennett, a student from the Academy of Contemporary Music, Guildford.

–          Most Visually Appealing (£500 prize): The Death and Life of a Can by Sonya Moorjani, a student of the American International University of London.

–          Three Commendations (£300 prize each): The Joys of Recycling by Lance Featherstone, You CAN Recycle by Dashiell Boyles and Nathan Scott, Cans Get Around by Jasmine Hussey and Emily Barron.

However, the overall winner (and winner in the Wittiest category) was Can Heist; a creative and funny production by Jens Christensen, Louis King and James Hurst – students of Goldsmiths University who go by the collective name of The Basterds Production Company.

This winning entry highlighted the potential value of a recycled aluminium can (particularly from a financial perspective) in the form of a gangland-style heist operation. Two low level crooks are angry to discover the bounty that they’ve been sent to steal is only a few bags full of aluminium cans, before their godfather-type boss explains that “60 days later, you’ll be driving round London in a Jag made from parts recycled from these cans”.

The film appealed to the humorous side of the judging panel, and was particularly suited to the tastes of one high profile supporter of the Can Makers project: actor Danny Dyer. After viewing the short, Dyer commented “Can Heist draws the audience in with its high octane beginning, keeps your attention and gets the message across that metal is a valuable resource. I’m also honoured that perhaps my film career partly inspired their genre choice!”

The win saw the trio pocket a cool £1,500 – money that they say will be used to fund further creative forays – and satisfied the competition’s creators, who were keen to get across findings that came out of a previous report, entitled Recycling on the Go: A Youth Perspective. This research highlighted certain misconceptions about the nature and process of recycling, as well as determining that video is a great medium to get messages about this subject across to a younger audience.


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