The main thing that separates HeyUGuys from other film sites is one of the things I value most about us – we aren’t obsessed with the Hollywood Blockbuster.  While we enjoy the privilege of bringing you coverage of the popcorntastic openings of films such as Iron Man 2 and The Prince of Persia we also embrace the opportunity to support newer voices in British cinema.  To that end we spent last night in Mayfair.  We were not there shopping for fine designer goods, nor were we fine-dining from a quadruple starred plate.  We were there to celebrate film – gritty British film.  That film was Just for the Record and the night was about as gritty and Britty as you can get without a bulldog, a Union Jack, or George and his Dragon putting in personal appearances!

This joint production from Black and Blue Films and Raw Film Productions documents the downfall of a low budget British Rom Com.  Drawing on the personal experiences of its seasoned cast of players it offers a sneak peek at a world that exists beyond the camera’s reach.  With an aesthetic as quirky and off-beat as its script Just for the Record dares reach beyond the gangster pigeonholing of its cast.

The girls were glam, with tans as deep as their cleavage and heels as vertiginously high as hopes for the film’s success.  Cast members Steven Berkoff, Sean Pertwee, Triana Terry, Craig Fairbrass and Roland Manookian all turned out in support of the film at the Mayfair Curzon alongside Raw regular Ricky Grover and actress Pooja Shah.  Touchingly newcomer Triana – Just for the Record’s posh ‘star’ Lucy Smithfield – was preoccupied with worry that people would mistake her for Steven Berkoff’s “dolly bird”.  In fact she was the most elegantly dressed woman of the evening by far and glowed with quiet pride at her starring role.  The rep company of players that Raw and Black and Blue have assembled during their association has fostered a warm, familial, atmosphere and that warmth was tangible on the red carpet and in the foyer as cast and crew reunited to celebrate the gala night together.

When we caught up with Steven Berkoff before the screening he was keen to emphasise the fun he had had on the film.  Acting independently of the rest of the production he had felt freed by the idea he could make the part of DP Mike Rosberry his own.  He had had a wonderful experience with first time director Steve Lawson and was thoroughly looking forward to working with him again.  As Just for the Record is a mockumentary about the worst possible experience an actor can have on a film set we had to ask Steven what his worst experience on a film had been.  He was a jolly good sport and confided a fantastic story.  In 1995 he was a principle player in Cindy Crawford’s acting debut Fair Game alongside William Baldwin.  In preparation for the demands of playing a Russian Colonel he carefully researched dialect and military history…only to be asked to re-record the entire performance in post-production with a stiff-upper-lip English accent!  We dare not reproduce the sound file here but needless to say his opinion of producer Joel Silver necessitated some very strong language.  Fortunately for Just for the Record producers Jonathan Sothcott and Steve Lawson, he was far happier about his latest role!

Supporting actor Craig Fairbrass was swift to sing the films praises speaking from the perspective of his vast experience of lower budget filmmaking.  He felt the film portrayed a truly entertaining glimpse behind the scenes.  Keen to emphasise how proud he was to once more star alongside Steven Berkoff and Danny Dyer his modesty was a credit to his impressive reputation.  He’d had so many experiences of on-set nightmares that he literally did not know where to begin.  From tears to flouncing directors, competitive cast and street fighting crews. His approach these days is to manage the drama by justifying it as six weeks of “agg” out of his life that “might, just might, be brilliant”.  Next for Craig is another Black and Blue production, Devil’s Playground also with lad’s favourite Danny Dyer and co-starring Dexter’s Jaime Murray.  Despite multiple upcoming projects Craig’s heart lies with his self-penned drama, Gunned Down, his “baby”.  Reuniting with Steven Berkoff he intends Marbella set Gunned Down to be a gritty, honest film that takes him straight back to his gangster roots.  As he acknowledges: “people love that stuff”.

In the aftermath of the storm in a Twittering teacup Danny Dyer was camera and conversation shy, but it is a testament to the sense of family that Steve Lawson has created that he came out to support the film in spite of this.  Just for the Record may not be everyone’s cup of tea but there is no denying it has the front to be exactly what it is…

A pretty pukka picture!