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Director discusses We Are York documentary

Episode One: The Charge Begins of our We Are York documentary was released on Thursday on the Club's YouTube channel, providing behind-the-scenes access into York RLFC!

We spoke to Director and Producer Craig Bingham about the filming process, the themes of the documentary and taking audiences on an emotional journey.

What was the filming process like?

“The filming journey so far has been really insightful. I’m an outsider to the sport of rugby league, so I’m coming into this with fresh eyes, which I think works to my advantage.

"I’m more interested in what happens off the pitch than on it - the personalities behind the players, their daily grind, what makes them tick, their fears, insecurities, doubts - all of it.

"With an unfolding narrative like this, the filming process is really instinctive; you have to let go of a rigid structure and just listen to what the individuals have to say, which then guides you to the next piece of the story. I’ve found that always leads you to real authenticity.”

What are the themes of the documentary?

“The beauty of this project, and of documentary film making, is that the themes present themselves as the story unfolds, both to me as the director and to the audience. But, with this documentary, I hope to encapsulate the essence of York.

"It will explore the impact rugby has on its people - the sacrifices made and the lengths individuals go to for their sport. While the backbone of the film will follow York Knights' journey toward the Betfred Super League and York Valkyrie's bid for more silverware, it will extend beyond mere competition.

"It will delve into the players' livelihoods and tap into the influence rugby has on their lives. No matter what happens this season, I have no doubt it’s going to be an emotional one… it’s been clear from the start that rugby league means everything to them.”

And there is a particular focus on the backstories of the players and staff...

“When players hit the pitch, regardless of the team, they're often seen as heroes or gladiators. Yet, I'm intrigued by the characters behind that image.

"Everyone involved in the club, just like you and me, all face personal struggles, each on their own journey. I’m aiming to capture an authentic look into what makes up the York Knights and the York Valkyrie, looking beyond the scoreboard.”

What are you hoping that the documentary showcases about the Club and the sport?

“Ultimately, I want audiences to come away from this documentary feeling an emotional connection to those who have built a life around this sport and this team. Tackling stereotypes that surround not only rugby but also northern culture is very important to me.

"We know the grit and hardness attached to the sport, but I'm aiming to offer a different perspective. More specifically to the game, I want the documentary to showcase the impact of IMG’s new grading system. The sport is set to change and I get to be smack bang in the middle of it all!”

To watch Episode One: The Charge Begins of the We Are York documentary, click HERE!


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