About the film
Billy, born Sarah, is a macho trans guy from a small market town, where men are men, and men born as women aren’t supposed to exist. After a family altercation, Billy runs away to live life as the man he wants to be, free from the baggage of his past. But through a series of unlikely friendships, Billy learns that finding himself is much more complicated than he thought it would be.
From the director
"Smalltown Boy is a rite of passage story about a different type of skinhead. Billy’s a macho guy with an unusual history, desperate to belong but going about it the wrong way. In an age of bankrupt patriarchal values, Billy’s search for an identity embodies the contradictions of modern Britain. An Angry Young Man for the 21st Century – working class, trans, millennial, lost – Billy is an everyman for generation Trumped. The film is a warm, thoughtful, moving portrait of an outsider looking in."
Meet the team
Writer/Director Alex Winckler
As a Fulbright Scholar, Alex attended Columbia University’s MFA Film program in New York. His graduation film Ralph was nominated for a BAFTA in 2009, and in the same year he was named as one of Screen International’s Stars of Tomorrow. In 2012 he produced and directed Living the Dream, an original sitcom for E4, before directing Tom Basden’s Very Few Fish for the BBC. In 2013 he directed Tits for the BFI’s Lighthouse Scheme and opened Crims, a BBC3 sitcom. He directed the final block of series two of My Mad Fat Diary for E4, which was nominated for Best Drama at the International Emmys. Repped for commercials by Archer’s Mark, he has directed adverts for clients such as Barclaycard, Nike, Microsoft, and Lloyds. He has a feature in development with Creative England and BFI NET.WORK, with writer Nick Payne and producer Jude Goldrei.
Producer Maria Forsstrom
Originally from Finland, Maria moved to the UK in 2004 and joined independent film production company Vita Nova Films. She has been involved in the management of all of Vita Nova’s productions including Prima Primavera, the award-winning feature film by Janos Edelenyi. She has produced critically acclaimed short films funded by the UK Film Council and BFI, including Tom Marshall’s Happy Clapper (Joe Dempsie, Felicity Montagu). She is a graduate of EAVE. Maria has worked as a freelance producer at NBC Universal/CNBC, producing TV mini-series and commercials for financial institutions, and produced branded content for ITN Productions. She co-produced Aurora Fearnley’s short film, Murmur, with Jude Goldrei, which is currently screening at international film festivals. She is developing The Great Bear, the next feature film by critically acclaimed Finnish writer/director Jan Forsström, and Happy Clapper, Tom Marshall’s debut feature film, based on his award-winning short.
Producer Jude Goldrei
Jude’s company Lunar Lander Films has received a BFI Vision Award, and has a slate of comedy, sci-fi and horror films in development with talent including Alex Winckler, Nick Payne, Joy Wilkinson, Carolina Giammetta, Aurora Fearnley and Lucy Moore. She has a feature film in development with Creative England/BFI NET.WORK, and another feature in development with iFeatures. Jude has produced a number of award-winning short films, including Aurora Fearnley’s Murmur (co-produced with Maria Forsstrom) and animated series Zebra Face for Channel 4 (with Universal Spirits). She has worked as an executive producer on behalf of the UK Film Council on more than 70 short films, including a BAFTA winner. She has also worked for the British Council, Universal Spirits, Into Film, Bankside Films, Creative England and BBC Writer’s Room. She was selected for the Vipers Nest, Binger FilmLab and Guiding Lights 2016.