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Tuesday, 27 March, 2001, 13:59 GMT 14:59 UK
Loach to shoot election film
Ken Loach
Ken Loach has won two jury prizes at Cannes
Respected director Ken Loach is to direct a party election broadcast for the Socialist Alliance party.

The left-wing film maker is a supporter of the party and has agreed to direct the five-minute broadcast, to be shown in the run-up to the General Election, which could be held in May.

Arthur Scargill
Arthur Scargill used the skills of Ken Loach in 1997
Loach, director of Kes and My Name is Joe, made a similar broadcast for Arthur Scargill's Socialist Labour Party in 1997.

The film is expected to focus on what the Socialist Alliance perceives as Labour's failures, such as part-privatisation of air traffic control, the public-private partnership for London's tube network and investment in public services.

Ken Loach is one of Britain's most acclaimed directors and has been nominated six times for the Palme D'Or at Cannes and has won the jury prize twice at the prestigious film festival.

'Delighted'

A spokesman for the Socialist Alliance told BBC News Online: "We are delighted that Ken has decided to make the film for us - he has been a supporter of the Socialist Alliance since last year's Greater London Authority elections."

He said the finished broadcast would be of a "very high standard".

Neil Kinnock
Neil Kinnock hired director Hugh Hudson in 1987
"We are in early stages of developing the film but its themes will reflect some of Labour's failures," he said.

The party has the right to broadcast a party political film because it is putting forward more than 100 canidates in the election.

It is not the first time that a respected film-maker has made a political broadcast.

In 1987 Chariots of Fire director Hugh Hudson directed a broadcast for the Neil Kinnock-led Labour Party.

The broadcast showed Kinnock and his wife Glenys walking on a coastal path with the sound provided by a recent speech by the former Labour leader.

More recently the Labour Party has used Planet 24, the production company behind The Big Breakfast, to make its political broadcasts.

See also:

27 Mar 01 | Music
Labour denies Fatboy link
13 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Director Loach slams TV news
11 May 00 | Entertainment
Loach's Cannes call for immigrants
11 May 00 | Entertainment
Loach leads way in Cannes
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