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Sounds great! Where do we sign up!?

Making low budget films equates to long, irregular hours, working days, nights and weekends, zero work-life balance, no holidays, no pension, a toll on your physical and mental health. And it’s highly likely you’ll never get it made anyway.

Sound's great! Where do we sign up!?

Oh, I remember it like yesterday. I would wake with a spring in my step every morning, happy to be alive, hanging out with my children, building a home, growing a business etc etc. It was all so simple and straightforward. I didn’t even know what anxiety felt like. Genuinely!

Then, literally out of nowhere, Richard announces he’d like to write a script and make a short film. After laughing and simultaneously spitting out my tea, I quickly realised he was serious. This is a person whose never so much as written a shopping list, birthday card or postal address. I was quite thrown, and shamefully on my part, nodded, smiled and said “OK, darling”. And thought that would be the end if it. Well, that was not the end of it.

Roughly 3 weeks later he presents me with a script. An actual script. Beautifully formatted as a script should be, and I sat on the sofa and read. Within 10 minutes I was sobbing. Oh my gosh, I want to make this film too!

This was the start of a journey we had zero knowledge about. Our naive optimism and energy going into the making of our first short film was quite wonderful, and a feeling and attitude we are actually reverting back to now - but that’s for another day.

At the time I didn’t really understand why we needed to make a short film and why Rich felt compelled to do it. We had a growing business producing ads, branded content and corporate films, we worked with great clients, we could pay our bills. To me it felt stable, manageable, and for the control freak side of me, very easy to control.

But more often that not, when working with clients, you work to a brief which is set directly by the brand or a creative team within an agency. Their creative vision has brought this video brief to life, and we are the team to, practically, bring that vision to fruition in film. Now don’t get me wrong, there is still a great deal of creativity in doing this. From understanding the technicalities of how to make something look beautiful, cinematic and well composed, to embracing music and smart editing to build a seamlessly flowing video - every element is integral. Beautiful content is not created by accident. It is the skills and creativity of directors, producers, dp’s, gaffers, set designers, cast and many more! It is a wealth of talented people, whose skills pull together to make ads and great content what it is. But what Rich had realised in himself, is that he needed to create something, maybe just once, that was completely free of red tape, brand guidelines, decision by committee, briefs or ‘on point messaging’. He needed to be creatively completely free!

As a producer, who loves spreadsheets, I did not understand this one bit. But - I loved this new effervescing energy in him, so I went with it!

We made our first short film in 2018, a film called Sylvia, and I will go into the joyous and the definitely un-joyous moments of that soon. It was everything we wanted and needed it to be. And the best part was, so many of our clients had lived and breathed this journey with us. Asking us for updates, attending the premiere, and subsequent film festivals! It was great for the two sides of the business to blend so well. And I say this with a full heart, if it was not for our loyal and longstanding clients, we would never have been able to make films in the first place. So thank you - you are all (unofficial) Executive Producers!

Here are a few snaps from the early days on set of Sylvia. A family affair, with a great bunch of talented crew and so much goodwill!


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