Liz Cashdan, 86, had until recently never made a film. But with local assistance from Leeds Beckett University and The Northern Film School, that is no longer the case.
The Sheffield, UK senior is one of several people who participated in a British leg of Cinage, a European Union initiative designed to foster active and artistic aging. From a report in the Yorkshire Post:
Cashdan, who was the oldest person on the project, not only wrote the script for Swimming Pool, but was also the director and one of the actors.
The film was inspired by a 16th Century painting called The Fountain of Youth by Lucas Cranach. But unlike in the painting, where older people go into the pool and walk out young again, in Cashdan’s film this isn’t quite the case. “In my film there is a lot of humor, and a lot of laughs and it also poses predicaments about being older – both in mind and body.”
Cashdan's short, along with two others made by the Yorkshire-area Cinage seniors, screened yesterday at the Bradford City of Film event. Cashdan is also a poet and currently teaches creative writing.
Coincidentally, Jessica Tandy, whose Alma Finley character is essentially the Cocoon version of Cashdan, was 85 and a half when she died.