The makers of a new CBBC drama, 'Jamie Johnson', got in touch with Notts County last year for assistance in filming their new programme aimed at children under 16, and we were only too happy to oblige.
It is produced by Short Form Film Company, and the 3x30-minute children’s series, filmed entirely in and around Nottingham, is inspired by the book series Jamie Johnson, written by former Football Association editor Dan Freedman.
Eleven-year-old Jamie Johnson (played by Louis Dunn) is a boy with a dream. A boy who lives and breathes football. These three episodes follow Jamie starting a new school, making new friends, dealing with the school bully Dillon (played by Patrick Ward), searching for his absent father, and eventually making the school’s football team, all with the support of his new friends Jack (played by Olivia Lava) and Boggie (played by Jonnie Kimmins).
A modified version of Notts County logo features heavily throughout the show on scarves and kits, and Jamie Johnson's team, Hawksworth United, even wear the famous black and white stripes of the Magpies.
Some shots at Meadow Lane were filmed in August last year, when Mansfield Town visited in our Sky Bet League Two fixture, and then cleverly interspersed with other shots filmed later on in the year when we invited CBBC's film crews back to complete filming.
We won't give away the finale, only to say that it is set at Meadow Lane on a matchday and is very cleverly done!
The series was commissioned by Cheryl Taylor, Controller of CBBC, and executive produced by Sue Nott. Cheryl Taylor says: "Jamie Johnson is a wonderful new drama coming to CBBC this summer - tying in perfectly with the Euros.
Although the underlying theme is football, the series is not just for football fans. The storylines have a really wide appeal for all the family."
“We’re also delighted to announce that Jamie Johnson has been recommissioned for a second series with production starting this August.”
The series was produced by Sam Talbot and directed by Joe Talbot from Short Form Film Company. Joe Talbot says:
“From the first time we read the books we knew Jamie Johnson needed to be taken to the screen. It resonated with us as film makers, aspiring footballers, and brought back fond memories of school life. We were delighted that CBBC shared our vision of creating a new drama series which we hope encapsulates the hopes, fears, pain and joy of our central character Jamie and all those who inhabit his wonderful world.”
Dan Freedman, author of the Jamie Johnson book series, says: "Children all over the country have been telling me just how excited they are about Jamie Johnson being brought to life and now they are going to see a cool, original, edgy drama that will speak to them on so many levels. I think the audience are going to absolutely love it."
Notts County Marketing and Media Executive, Benedict Mason, was pleased that the show's producers chose Meadow Lane to film their programme, and praised the production's quality. "It was an honour for us, as a family based club, to be asked by Short Form Film Company for our help in filming their new show aimed at children. The final result is fantastic, and Notts fans can be proud that we were a part of it and can show their children and maybe even inspire them in the name of Notts County!".