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Monday, July 5, 2010

Boy & Bicycle (1962) by Ridley Scott

Boy and Bicycle is the first film made by Ridley Scott. The black and white short was made on 16mm film while Scott was a photography student at the Royal College of Art in London in 1962. It was made initially on a budget of £65 using a Bolex 16mm cine-camera, and completed with the help of a grant provided by the BFI's Experimental Film Fund.

UK 1962 Dir Ridley Scott
Produced by Ridley Scott
Production company: the BFI Experimental Film Fund
Starring Tony Scott
c. 27 mins. Black and white

The film follows a boy as he plays truant from school and visits various locations around the seaside town on his bicycle. We hear his thoughts in a stream of consciousness voice-over partly inspired by James Joyce's 1922 novel Ulysses.

Although a very early work - Scott would not direct his first feature for another 15 years - the film is significant in that it features a number of visual elements that would be become motifs of Scott's work. The film features the cooling towers of the Imperial Chemical Industries works at Billingham, foreshadowing images in Alien, Blade Runner and Black Rain. The central element of the Boy and the Bicycle is re-used in Scott's advert for Hovis of the early 1970s. The film features Scott's younger brother Tony as the boy.
Scott secured finance from the British Film Institute to complete the editing and sound in 1965 including a track by John Barry called "Onward Christian Spacemen" which originally appeared as the "b" side of the theme to the television series The Human Jungle . Scott wanted to use the existing recording by Barry, but the composer was so impressed by the young film maker he agreed to produce a new recording for the film at limited cost.
This film has been released digitally as an extra on the DVD for Scott's first feature The Duellists.
"Courtesy of the British Film Institute (BFI) under the terms of the Creative Archive Licence at".



or watch the short clip below:

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