This is Co-op '17: Shane Meadows directs film for supermarket

Shane Meadows, the director behind cult film and TV series This is England, has directed a film for the Co-op as part of the supermarket brand's drive to recruit a million new members.

The film, which will debut in cinemas tomorrow and be shown before screenings of T2: Trainspotting, features real footage of local community projects around the UK that the Co-op supports.

Meadows claimed that he had "unofficially retired from making ‘commercials’ a number of years back", but became interested in the opportunity to film groups of real people.

He said: "With this sort of material you never know how it's going to turn out until you get there - filming real people just doing what they do with no script and no real structure is always a bit of a leap of faith, but once we began the first day's shoot with a group of children, their teachers and the volunteers who ran a community garden project in one of the toughest areas of Glasgow, I knew we had the opportunity to make something both touching and unique."

The campaign was created by Rob Tenconi and Mark Franklin for Leo Burnett, and produced by Tomboy Films. The Co-operative Group uses Rocket for its media planning and buying.

The Co-op announced last September it was aiming to increase its membership of five million by 20%, and introduced its "5:1" proposition, which offers members 5% back on own label purchases, with 1% extra going to a good cause.

The retailer said this week it had recruited 400,000 extra members in the last four months and was aiming to reach one million by the end of 2017.

Helen Carroll, head of brand, said: "This work marks the start of a new approach for us that is not really advertising at all. It shows the power of community in a visual language that doesn’t hide anything.

"This is what made Shane Meadows a natural choice for us.  We knew he would strip back the gloss of advertising, making unembellished and emotional films that find the beauty and truth in real people being honest to camera."

Meadows’ other films include A Room For Romeo Brass, Once Upon A Time In The Midlands and Dead Man’s Shoes.

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