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Aspiring director gets creative support from his Jewish school

James Paydon makes short horror films to dramatise issues affecting young people

    James Paydon, a student at JCoSS, is never happier than when he is behind his film camera.

    The aspiring director, from Mill Hill in North London, directs, edits and even does make-up for short horror films, which he has been uploading to Instagram and Youtube since October.

    The 14-year-old said that going to the school had helped his creativity and that it had been “really supportive of me”.

    James suffered as a child from psoriasis and depression before turning to the camera as a creative outlet. His short films focus on issues surrounding young people, addressing subjects from cyber-bullying to getting braces or driving lessons.

    James said: “My films are about my peers, with hidden messages of bullying and everything we go through in school. Some people don’t listen. I want to find a different way of getting through to people because it’s a really difficult time for us.”

    The Met Film School in London has taken interest in his talents, but he would not be able to attend until he turns 18.

    JCoSS has offered to let James take his media studies GCSE two years early. He has also been allowed to film in the school building, with some teachers even taking part as actors. James said: “They’ve helped me with my psoriasis by letting me use a laptop. They really want their students to be successful and they’re very good with helping people with special needs.”

    His mother, Claire Brodin, a hypnotherapist, described JCoSS as “an incredibly nurturing school” for supporting his creative talents.

    When he finishes at JCoSS, James intends to study at film school. He said: “I’m really focused. I really think I could be successful director when I’m older. I really want to inspire people.”

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