Simon Bland in Film & TV

27/04/2015

‘Orion: The Man Who Would Be King’ Wins Grand Jury Music Film Prize at Nashville

Director Jeanie Finlay’s music documentary ‘Orion: The Man Who Would Be King’ took home the Grand Jury Music Film prize at the Nashville Film Festival this weekend. 

‘Orion: The Man Who Would Be King’ follows the unusual story of Jimmy ‘Orion’ Ellis, a small-time singer who rose to fame in the wake of Elvis Presley’s death in 1977. Hidden behind a garish, bejeweled eye-mask and fitted with a fictional identity, Jimmy Ellis quickly became the mysterious Orion and the ‘Elvis is alive’ myth was born. 

Finlay was at Nashville Film Festival to screen her documentary to international audiences and was joined on stage by Jimmy Ellis Jr, Orion’s bandmates and representatives of Sun Records, the music studio responsible for shaping Orion’s unusual image. The documentary was ultimately awarded the Grand Jury Music Film award on the festival’s closing night. 

Finlay’s documentary was funded in part through Creative England’s Production Fund which aims to support features with a maximum budget of £2 million, taking particular interest in projects with a strong regional element. 

“We are delighted for Jeannie and the Orion Team. This award goes to one the most talented, passionate and focused feature doc makers in the business," said Creative England's Senior Film Executive Richard Holmes. 

"Watch this film and you see Jeanie’s abilities in every scene: wit, flair, energy and chutzpah. She’s a truly exciting filmmaker and Creative England are proud to have backed her from the start.”

To find out more about how Creative England supports filmmakers, directors and producers head here. To follow Creative England's film team on Twitter, head here.

  • Production Funding
  • Filmmaking