FROM studying screenwriting at the University of Salford to having her latest work The Fencer internationally recognised at the Golden Globes, the work of Anna Heinamaa shows that following your passion in life can create limitless opportunities.

The film is based on the true story of Endel, an Estonian fencer, who is forced to return home as he escapes from the Russian secret police. Upon returning to Estonia, Endel begins to train young children and is soon faced with a huge dilemma which may just cost him his life.

Unfortunately, ‘The Fencer’ did not win Best Foreign Language film at the Golden Globes this weekend but it has been selected as the Finnish entry for the same category at this year’s Academy Awards.

Before the ceremony, Anna spoke about her incredible love of cinema and how her late mother would return from a cinematic trip, watching classics such as The Godfather, and explain the whole story of the film to Anna and her sister.

What is more amazing about Anna’s journey is that she wrote The Fencer whilst studying MA Film Screenwriting at Salford.

When talking to Anna about what she resonated most with the story of Endel was the idea of the pain of sacrifice and the importance of having a passion in life as Endel had to give up his passion of fencing – in the same way Anna gave up her passion of writing for 10 years as she did not feel it was a real job.

However, Anna later regained her love of writing through screenwriting after a decade in which she described herself as “miserable”. The success that has come from Anna following her dreams is truly inspiring and there is surely more to come as she revealed she intends to write British and American films in the future.

Listen to the full interview below.

By Jamal Niaz

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