Scores sign up for Duncan Edwards film premiere

Scores of people have signed up to attend the red carpet premiere of a film about Duncan Edwards.

Callum Hay, who plays Duncan, at the Black Country Living Museum
Callum Hay, who plays Duncan, at the Black Country Living Museum

‘The Boy Who Had it All’ has been created by Black Country filmmaker Marcus Distant.

And it will have its grand premiere at Old Trafford on Sunday. More than 150 people have already confirmed they will be attending the event in a suite at Manchester United’s ground, where Black Country boy Edwards made his name.

The Boy Who Had It All, a short film about Duncan Edwards starring James Ayling, will premiere at Old Trafford on Sunday

The 18-minute film will focus on the football hero’s childhood in Dudley before he went onto glory with United and England – and his career tragically cut short.

Scenes were shot at the Black Country Living Museum earlier in the summer, which was the setting for 1940s Dudley, while filming has also taken place at Dudley Museum and Dudley Cemetery. And Mr Distant confirmed he will be screening the project in the Black Country – perhaps in mid-December – before it gets shown at the Cannes and London Film Festivals next year.

A £1,000 funding target needed to organise the premiere, which will take place on what would have been Edwards’ 81st birthday, was met in just a week.

Cameron Hay plays the role of a young Edwards, with several other young actors and actresses from the region being given their chance to shine. Members of Edwards’ family have been invited to attend, but Marcus said he is not sure if they will be able to.

Greg Scanlon, the son of Busby Babe Albert Scanlon who played alongside Edwards, is due to attend.

Duncan Edwards on the ball during his England debut in 1955, a 7-2 victory over Scotland at Wembley.

Mr Distant, who works in construction as a day job, said: “It’s absolutely manic at the moment. I’ve got a few friends and family who are going – my mates are getting a minibus. All the kids [in the film] are from the West Midlands and they’re all going to be going as well.

“My goal is to have a Netflix series come out of this.

“We need to get it seen by the right people to see it then things can go from there.”

Mr Distant, 30, spent more than a year researching the former United and England player’s life.

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