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Short narrative drama dealing with themes of grief, memory and the masculine suppression of emotion.
81 backers pledged £11,954 to help bring this project to life.

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Dad Was

Stricken with grief and regret, eight-year-old Mattie must give the eulogy at his father's funeral. 

Director's Statement:

We all have fathers. And at some point, we all become aware of their mortality. 

For me, that awareness came early; my Dad is 20 years older than most of those of people my age. 

As a result, I have had a recurring dream since the age of 8 about giving the eulogy at his funeral.

Fortunately, I haven’t had to give my Dad’s eulogy yet. But I’ve witnessed friends and relatives give them for their fathers and witnessed the deep regret they feel at not having told them exactly how they felt whilst they were still living.

Dad Was deals with the ways in which men, and particularly British men, suppress their emotions and are unable to articulate how they truly feel. In a time in which we're reappraising what it means to be a man, this film will make an important comment.

The measure of success for Dad Was won’t be in how loud the audience claps or how many awards it wins. It will be in how many of those who see the film call their fathers afterwards to tell them that they love them.

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We are looking for £10,000+ investment in order to cover production costs and to give the film the high level of craft we believe it requires and deserves.

Full script available on request for those looking to make significant investment. 


Meet The Dad Was Team:

Barnaby is a multi award-winning writer/director. For the last 8 years he has worked as a copywriter and Creative Director in the advertising industry. 

At the age of 26 he was awarded a BAFTA for his 2014 Winter Olympics campaign for the BBC before moving to Los Angeles to be the Creative Director for brands including NBA 2K, Call Of Duty and Google. In 2017 he shot his first short film and directorial debut, Wale. Since its completion, Wale has been shown at film festivals all over the world, was shortlisted for the Academy Awards and nominated for a BAFTA. 

Dad Was will be his second short film.

Ed started his career at the age of 17 landing the lead role in Eragon, starring alongside Oscar winners Jeremy Irons and John Malkovich. He is widely known for playing Jimmy Kent in the Golden Globe and Emmy winning series Downton Abbey. He then went on to play Edward Seymour in the award winning series Wolf Hall. Ed has starred in studio features such as Disney’s Alice Through The Looking Glass as well as independent films such as Julian Gilbeys A Lonely Place to Die and Omer Fast’s Remainder.

More recent credits include Breathe (directed by Andy Serkis) alongside Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy, Lars Von Trier’s The House That Jack Built with Matt Dillon, Zoo with Zoe Tapper (Antonio Tublen) and the Starz TV sensation Outlander. In 2017, he teamed up with Barnaby Blackburn to form Dark Glass Films and created their first film, Wale

Tom has worked in the industry for over 15 years, with experience across development, international sales, financing, production, post and distribution, having worked on numerous features including I Kill Giants (Anders Walter), A Hundred Streets (Jim O'Hanlon), Summer in February (Christopher Menaul) and The Best Offer (Giuseppe Tornatore).

As an independent producer, Tom recently produced Naptha, written and directed by Screen Star of Tomorrow Moin Hussain, which was financed by Film London and Film4. He also produced Balcony in 2015, financed by Film London and Western Edge Pictures and which won the Crystal Bear in Berlin and gained a BIFA nomination. He is a Berlinale talent and has a number of projects in development through his company, Conspire Pictures.

Robbie has been working in film since his early teens, going on to work as a camera assistant on major studio films for seven years. He was mentored by cinematographer Haris Zambarloukos on the feature films Locke, Jack Ryan and Cinderella, working as camera operator on the latter. Following this he worked on Star Wars: The Force Awakens on which he was mentored by Dan Mindel. 

Robbie is now working full time as a cinematographer shooting films, commercials and music videos. He and Barnaby teamed up for the first time on Wale.

Originally from Hungary, Lili graduated at University of the Arts London specialising in Production Design. Since then she has worked in art departments on major studio films including Ready Player One, Detective Pikachu and Paddington 2 and independent features such as Xavier Dolan's The Death and Life of John F. Donovan and Sean Durkin's The Nest

Meanwhile she has designed several award winning short films, including Wale with Barnaby and Ed, and in 2016 she was Production Designer on her first feature film Shapes. She is an active member of the British film community; a Warner Bros Creative Talent Alumni and the member of BAFTA Crew.

After completing her HND in fashion, Asia went on to specialise in costume and graduated from The Old Vic Theatre School, Bristol.  She has been a major part of the costume department on BAFTA winning shows such as Three Girls, Broadchurch and Downton Abbey. She has had varied roles on small and big screen from being the Assistant Designer on TNT's period drama Will to working with high end fashion as Buyer and Design Assistant on MGM's Hustle.  Asia has just joined the team on HBO and The BBC's His Dark Materials as Assistant Designer. 

Her first designer credit was teaming up with Barnaby on Wale.  

Edward has spent a decade editing music videos and commercials for some of the world's biggest brands. He has cut promos for the likes of Nick Cave, Usher, U.N.K.L.E. and Ed Sheeran as well as TV spots for Adidas, Guinness and EA Games. 

Edward is currently expanding his storytelling craft by turning his attention to drama and documentaries, including his first collaboration with Barnaby on Wale. He lives in Los Angeles and works at Cartel Edit.

Ross Barratt has worked with some of the top casting directors in the UK. He relocated from London to Glasgow in 2016 and is now part of the team at Kahleen Crawford Casting. Most recent credits include The Miniaturist (BBC) Outlaw King (Netflix) and His Dark Materials (BBC/HBO). 

Risks and challenges

Filmmaking is a risky business. It involves a lot of organization and things falling into place. Fortunately, we have a team of superstars, with a wealth of experience in all departments, who are hugely committed to the success of this film.

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    Pledge £10 or more About US$ 13

    THE TENNER

    THANK YOU CREDIT at the end of the film and a PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is completed.

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    THE COLLECTOR

    ORIGINAL FILM POSTER, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos. PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished and THANK YOU CREDIT at the end of the film.

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    THE AUTOGRAPH

    SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by Cast and Crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS as well as access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos. PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished and THANK YOU CREDIT at the end of the film.

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    THE PREMIERE

    1 TICKET TO FILM PREMIERE as well as SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos. PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished and THANK YOU CREDIT at the end of the film.

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    THE VIP TREATMENT

    2 TICKETS TO FILM PREMIERE and a PERSONALISED VIDEO FROM ED SPELEERS, as well as SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos, PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished and THANK YOU CREDIT at the end of the film.

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    THE ASSISTANT PRODUCER

    OFFICIAL CREDIT AS ASSISTANT PRODUCER on film end credits and iMDB plus 2 TICKETS TO FILM PREMIERE and a PERSONALISED VIDEO FROM ED SPELEERS AND CAST MEMBERS, as well as SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos, PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished.

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    Pledge £1,000 or more About US$ 1,267

    THE CO-PRODUCER

    OFFICIAL CREDIT AS CO-PRODUCER on film end credits and iMDB plus a VISIT TO SET and 4 TICKETS TO FILM PREMIERE. a PERSONALISED VIDEO FROM ED SPELEERS and key cast members, as well as SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos, PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished.

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    THE FILMMAKING EXPERIENCE

    ONE-ON-ONE ACTING/DIRECTING WORKSHOP WITH ED SPELEERS AND BARNABY BLACKBURN as well as OFFICIAL CREDIT AS CO-PRODUCER on film end credits and iMDB, a VISIT TO SET and 4 TICKETS TO FILM PREMIERE, a PERSONALISED VIDEO FROM ED SPELEERS and key cast members, FRAMED AND SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos, PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished.

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    THE MOVIE MOGUL

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER on film end credits and iMDB and PERSONALLY THANKED IN ALL AWARDS SPEECHES as well as a ONE-ON-ONE ACTING/DIRECTING WORKSHOP WITH ED SPELEERS AND BARNABY BLACKBURN and DINNER WITH ED AND BARNABY, a VISIT TO SET and 4 TICKETS TO FILM PREMIERE, a PERSONALISED VIDEO FROM ED SPELEERS and key cast members, FRAMED AND SIGNED ORIGINAL POSTER by cast and crew, ORIGINAL FILM STILL PRINTS, access to a gallery of BEHIND THE SCENES photos/videos, PRIVATE ONLINE LINK to the film once the festival run is finished.

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Funding period

- (18 days)