A LITTLE lad from Basildon has been chosen from 150 hopefuls to play a leading role in a forthcoming short film directed by Game of Thrones actor Darren Kent.

Kent, who has also appeared in Frankenstein's Chronicles with Sean Bean, chose nine year old Leon Thomas to star in his film Meadow Lane, as cheeky chappy Joey - the youngest of a large family of Irish travellers.

Frances Styles, Leon's drama teacher who runs the Star Struck Theatre performing arts school where Leon attends, was asked to submit video auditions of all her boys aged seven to 11 for the role. She says for his audition Leon had to learn how to do an Irish accent, something he found hard to master, but he "loves trying out different voices & accents & finds it fun."

Darren Kent - who is from Southend - added that Leon’s audition was really stood, explaining that his first video audition was very sincere and his second was much more aggressive.

“He showed real versatility and took a risk by giving two very different performances, and we liked that”, he said.

The film also stars Sonny Green, an actor and rap artist also from Southend, who has appeared in Waterloo Road and is known for sharing the stage with Fat Boy Slim in 2013 at the House of Commons for a Last Night a DJ Saved My Life (LNADJ) charity event.

Kent is now looking for extras - mainly adults but some teenagers and children - to appear in one scene of the film, which deals with the eviction of an Irish traveller family. It is to be shot in Southminster.

Local people who are interested in being involved should apply to Frances Styles of Star Struck Theatre School at info@starstruck-theatreschool.co.uk and e mail a photo of themselves with their application stating their name, age and location.

Filming will be in Southminster on Sunday April 17.

Star Struck Theatre School runs drama, singing and dance classes in Basildon on Saturday mornings for children aged four to 16.

For more information contact Frances on 01621 778745 / 07740 553529 or visit starstruck-theatreschool.co.uk