Newport shines in new Youtube documentary by filmmakers


A PAIR of enterprising young amateur film makers from Newport have made a Youtube documentary about the current issues affecting the city.

They are now reaching out to Welsh societies across the world to tell their story.

Newport 2021: A Portrait of a City – which you can watch below – has been filmed and published by Alex Rondel, 19, of Rogerstone, and Jack Underwood-Gibbs, 18, of Bassaleg, on their popular channel.

The film contains some bad language.

Speaking about the inspiration to make the 40-minute film, Mr Rondel said: “For a year now I wanted to make a report on Newport and tell its story – for good and bad – because I think it often gets overlooked when you compare it to Cardiff or Swansea.

“I discussed the idea with Jack and we agreed to do a joint project. I would do the research, write the script and present, while Jack sorted the equipment and filmed and edited it. It’s not meant to be a definitive guide to the city, but it’s our take on it.”

He is due to start a degree in drama and theatre studies at the University of South Wales in September, and Mr Underwood-Gibbs is studying mechanical engineering at Cardiff University.

Mr Underwood-Gibbs said: “As a filming location, Newport is an amazing place.

“You have a lot of modern-looking shops, but look above them and there is some fantastic architecture that is listed.

“You’ve also got some iconic art deco buildings like the Civic Centre which everyone knows.”

The pair are now promoting the film on social media and have been in contact with a number of Welsh Societies as far afield as Canada and the United States.

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Mr Rondel added: “Obviously, the number of high street big brand shops closing in the centre and Friars Walk was an issue for us – it’s where the idea came from.

“But for the younger generation, it’s vital that we keep the up and coming independent specialists like Sin City Comics which has a huge niche following.

“Newport is having a tough time and we wanted the documentary to recognise that.

“But we also want to get across the city and its inhabitants have a lot of character which is quite unique.

“We didn’t capture everything, so we may look at doing a sequel.”





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