Skip to main content Skip to navigation

‘This-That’ hits the big screen at Portobello Film Festival

Constantine GrasThis-That, a film made by University of Warwick alumni Jacob Barua and Constantine Gras in 1989 during the last year of their studies on the Film and Literature course is set to be screened at 19:40 on the 10th September at the free Portobello Film Festival in London.

The 30 minute art film is about a student who is obsessed with the myth of Icarus as political and personal events unfold around him. It features a snap shot of the university campus in 1989.

“This-That was the result of a deep inner need to encompass my entire experience as a student who had both lived in different countries, cultural and political systems. One of the overarching themes of the film is the struggle that each human has to undertake to find a space of comfort, to be able to be oneself, while struggling against the dominant societal forces.

“I found the course at the university to be exhilarating in its scope - exactly tailored to my needs. Great lectures and given the small size of our department, an opportunity to bond with colleagues.

The university also happened to have the largest independent art centre outside London, at the time. However the jewel of this mini-city campus was a massive library, with a salivating wealth of books that was beyond belief and we featured this in one of the key scenes in the film.

“My inspiration for the main character was based on a readily available 'blueprint'. I used Warwick's most enigmatic and unique real life student - Constantine Gras, then a budding writer who always wore 1940’s suits and a trilby. Together we created This-That about a student who uses the Greek myth of Icarus to transcend the limitations of our time and space."

The film, which has been digitally restored with a grant from the Centre for International Theatre Development was screened for the first time in 25 years to the acclaim of contemporary students as a part of the university’s 50th anniversary celebrations last year.

Since leaving the university both Jacob and Constantine have had careers in the arts and film industry. Jacob lives in Nairobi and recently had his films celebrated at a UNESCO event. In 2014, Constantine became the first V&A Museum community artist in residence and is based in London.

The Portobello film festival highlights films by emerging directors and crews working in the digital medium. Previous participants in the Portobello film festival have included John Malkovich, Guy Ritchie, Sarah Gavron, Shane Meadows, Julien Temple, Pam Hogg, Bella Freud, Blek Le Rat, Eine, Chris Cunningham, Julian Marley, Gaz Mayall, Mike Figgis, Joe Rush, Anita Pallenberg and Franc Roddam.

For more information visit:


Alex Buxton, Media Relations Manager, Tel: 02476 150423, Mob: 07876 218166,

AB 06/09/2016


Alex Buxton

Media Relations Manager
Tel: 02476 150423
Mob: 07876 218166