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FANS ON FILM

18 October 2013

Blue Army to 'star' in emotional footie flick

Town fans will become film stars at Saturday’s game as part of an uplifting story from Japan.   

A film crew will be at Portman Road to capture a segment for the documentary feature film 'Football, Take Me Home', which is scheduled for release in early 2014.

The film tells the story of the maverick fans of Vegalta Sendai, an underachieving second division team in Japan whose home town was at the centre of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. 

Despite losing over half the population of some of the coastal parts of the region to the tragedy, over 3,500 fans made it to the first away game less than a month after the earthquake to make a promise to the people of their city.

Defiantly, they vowed that the team would not lose a game until the city had been rebuilt and almost true to their word, the team set out on a remarkable run that would see them finish runners up in the Japanese premier division only two seasons later - with no extra funding and the same squad of players that had narrowly avoided relegation the season before.

“There is a close connection between Ipswich Town and the events in the story,” explained Grant Cummings, producer on 'Football, Take Me Home'. 

“Two survivors from the earthquake visited Portman Road for a game in the weeks after the disaster and were amazed to hear the Vegalta club song - 'Take Me Home, Country Road' being played in tribute to the people of their city. 

“That set in motion a chain of events that led back to Japan. The film is about the power of fans to unite against adversity.  It’s a true story of the international brotherhood of football fans that became an inspiration to a country in its darkest hour.

“Before kick-off, a shirt will be presented to the fans on behalf of the people of the city in appreciation of the message of support sent by Town and the Club’s supporters.”

The film is a Bill and Ben & Cling Film production, in association with GPO Films. Visit www.footballtakemehome.com for more details.


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