Over the last few years Scarborough has been lovingly developed with the help and support of our local film community. Now we need your help to kick it into production!
Set over three days in the British seaside town of Scarborough, two couples seek an escape from the constraints of real life. In a faded hotel, amongst the peeling wallpaper and away from the prying eyes of their hometown, they laugh, quarrel, make love and enjoy their anonymity.
The hotel rooms are their safe haven but also their self-imposed prison as they don’t dare go out. After all, at barely 16 years old, two of them are still at school.... and the other two, their teachers.
Part love story and probing social commentary, Scarborough has a gripping narrative that uses it's structure to explore the boundaries of responsibility and consent.
What's the Film about?
Check out writer and director Barnaby Southcombe's take on the project interviewed by our very own office intern, Matt. All expenses spared on this item... we're saving it all for the film!
The story is about two couples who unbeknownst to each other find themselves in the same seaside hotel at the same time, for the same reason. Both are teachers having affairs with their students and they have come to Scarborough for one final weekend to try and put an end to this.
At first we think these couples have nothing to do with each other, but very soon we realise they are actually one and the same relationship played out by different people.
It’s a simple device that asks a pretty fundamental question, faced with the same moral dilemma would a man respond differently to a woman? And if so, is that down to gender or personality?
Scarborough is about responsibility and the time bomb that is underage sex. Can we be the arbitrator of someone else’s love? Is it our place to decide what is genuine or what is manipulated in a consenting relationship? At what point does age become inappropriate and where is that line drawn?
These characters most likely are wrong, they are certainly misguided and confused. But what they are most, is human.
In Edward Hogg we have an established and distinctive voice attached to the project, born in Doncaster and raised in Sheffield. Named as one of European Film Awards Shooting Stars, Edward is know for his powerful portrayals, consistently challenging stereotypes and testing the boundaries of performance.
In Jodhi May we also have a fearless and hugely talented artist, who is still the youngest person to receive a Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival. Jodhi has that uncanny ability to play naive characters who, when pushed, are capable of extraordinary feats.
We are intending to cast locally around Yorkshire with a view to discovering new talent for the young male and female leads.
The beautiful thing with art house movies is they attract passion and dedication like no other from the film community and the support for this film is already humbling.
Seriously experienced technicians and hire companies have agreed to come on board for a fraction of their normal rates. In fact, we've worked out that for every pound that’s pledged, the donation will be worth 5 times that in production terms. The money is all going on screen!
Alongside our all-star cast, here's the team who have shaped the development of Scarborough.
Barnaby Southcombe: Director
Barnaby began his directing career in theatre with an adaptation of Harold Pinter’s ‘Betrayal’ in Paris.
Moving to London he got his directing break in TV drama with teen show AS IF for Channel 4. He subsequently directed TEACHERS also for Channel 4, launched the first ever dope opera: TOP BUZZER for MTV and directed the pilot episode for WATERLOO ROAD an award-winning peak time drama for BBC1, among many others.
After setting up Embargo Films in 2010, Barnaby wrote and directed his first feature film I, ANNA starring Charlotte Rampling, Gabriel Byrne and Hayley Atwell which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival. It is a noir thriller adapted from the novel of the same name by Elsa Lewin. It received the audience award at Vancouver, was in the Official competition in Shanghai Film Festival and received a Best Actress Nomination for Charlotte Rampling at the Evening Standard British Film Awards.
Nuala O’Leary: Producer
Nuala spent five years as an associate producer at Embargo, working closely with the principle producers in the daily running of the company, developing projects and taking an immediate role on all active productions. In early 2013, Nuala produced her first full-length feature film PANIC starring David Gyasi and Pippa Nixon. At present Nuala holds a key position as Creative Executive at Raindog Films, continuing to show herself as a vital asset to the UK film and television industry.
Christopher Simon: Executive Producer
Christopher started out as an actor in television and in London’s West End theatre working with directors such as Harold Pinter and Stephen Daldry. Christopher has eighteen years experience as a producer on over twenty films. Notably, he was a producer on The Sweeney, Pusher, I, Anna and Miss you Already starring Toni Collette and Drew Barrymore.
As the current Head of Production at New Sparta Films Christopher is overseeing a slate of prestige productions including the Limehouse Golem starring Bill Nighy.
Fiona Evans: Playwright
Fiona is an award-winning playwright whose work has been produced in the UK and abroad. Best known for her play Scarborough, which won a Scotsman Fringe First Award at Edinburgh Festival Fringe and transferred to the Royal Court, her most recent play My Boy was inspired during her attachment at the Royal Court - Clare McIntyre Bursary - and also forms part of the work completed in her practice led Creative Writing PhD at Newcastle University, during which Fiona radically reworked Euripides’ Greek tragedies Medea and Electra for the stage.
She is also developing Brecht’s Threepenny Bits for Homer Simpson Productions, a play with music about Brecht’s forgotten female collaborators and the myth of the single male genius, recently workshopped at Theatre Royal Stratford East with director Josette Bushell-Mingo. Fiona teaches creative writing with diverse groups of people in settings ranging from universities to prisons and is a graduate of the BBC Writers’ Academy.
Ian Liggett: Cinematographer
Ian Liggett has over twenty years of experience as an established cinematographer in the UK film and television industry. He attended the Northern Film School and the Polish National Film School gaining an MA in Film Production specialising in cinematography. Initially working on a broad range of documentaries including commissions for Equinox and Horizon.
He subsequently went on to shoot on a number of high-end television drama and independent features. Alongside his commercial projects, Ian has worked on numerous short films and with artists such as Yinka Shonibare – remaining close to education by running workshops at various colleges.
The town of Scarborough, initially an exhilarating environment, humming with the risk of detection, will slowly change its face to reflect the rising anxiety of the protagonists. Visually, the deep currents and tidal shifts from the expansive shoreline will come to mirror the profound unrest at the heart of this tense drama.
About Embargo Films
Embargo Films is a London based production company specialising in high quality international feature films.
Barnaby Southcombe and Christopher Simon are founding partners. Under this banner they produced: I, ANNA starring Charlotte Rampling and Gabriel Byrne, which premiered at Berlinale; PUSHER, an English language remake of the cult film by Nicolas Winding Refn, launched by Weinstein Co. in Toronto; THE SWEENEY, directed by Nick Love starring Ray Winstone and Ben Drew which opened No 1 at the UK Box Office. They also partnered up with Uberto Pasolini’s STILL LIFE with Eddie Marsan which enjoyed a hugely successful run of festivals winning 17 prizes, 4 of which were at Venice including Best Director and Best Film and then the Golden Puffin at Reykjavik Film Fest.
Most recently they produced Catherine Hardwicke’s comedy drama MISS YOU ALREADY starring Toni Collette and Drew Barrymore through sister outfit S Films.
Embargo continues to push the creative envelope navigating between art-house and commercial projects at will. Acting as a haven for creative and like minded filmmakers to come and express themselves freely.
So why Kickstarter?
Simply put: economics. Challenging films are challenging to set up, and even harder to maintain artistic control over. Embargo Films has been involved with very commercial films and wholly art house films. Both require the same amount of love and hard work, however, with art house film the creative restraints are much greater. We need support from the Kickstarter community to make this the film it deserves to be.
With your help we will be able to finalise all that is needed to go into production early 2017.
Where will the money go?
Film finance only becomes payable on the first day of principal photography. On bigger films this is fine because we can borrow against the amounts that are going to be delivered. In the case of very small budget films, such as Scarborough’s, we have to fund all the pre-production expenses ourselves.
The kickstarter money will help us with the last leg of pre-production which requires casting far and wide for the young leads to find new extraordinary talents, the likes of Jack O’Connell. With such a short shooting schedule rehearsal time before the shoot is extremely valuable and money will go towards this too. Also location scouting to secure the perfect environment for our characters and to build the set of the hotel interior. Much of the work has already been done over the last two years. We have a great script, incredible cast and a fearless leader! What more could you want? Bring on the shoot…
We’ve got a range of really cool rewards to encourage you to part with your hard earned money. We have hand-printed, specially designed T-Shirts. Limited run Screen Printed posters. Signed DVD copies of the film. Tickets to the premiere and even the chance to be on set. A lot of these you can see below and some of these will be shippable immediately. So please get involved and help make Scarborough a reality.
FOR THE PICTURE PURISTS:
See the Scarborough Teaser in Full HD!
That's all folks!
Thanks to everyone who has already helped us get this far
- Artwork by Matter
- Photography by Felix McCabe
- Music by Daniel Pemberton
Risks and challenges
There will always be unknowns when making a feature film, this is normal. Our job at Embargo Films is to ensure that the planning and preparation in pre-production is to the highest standard, that even in a worst-case scenario Scarborough makes it to the screen. However it must be noted that even the most commercial films can be ready to go, fully funded, into shooting and face unknown problems that cease production.
To maintain creative freedom is a challenge, but with the support of the Kickstarter community, we would keep Scarborough as pure and thought provoking as the play it came from. It is with your help that we can make a truly original British art house film.
We’ve got a really great team of professionals, willing to give their time for a fraction of their normal rate to get the film made, no doubt that with our deadline there will be long working hours and many caffeine boosts, but the drive you can see through our project hopefully shows the dedication and determination to keep Scarborough on track.
If you help fund Scarborough, we hope to enter pre-production straight away, with the intention of filming early 2017 for festival distribution the same year.
Now on to the rewards…
As you can see we’ve put a lot of thought into the rewards to really make you feel like you’re a part of the Scarborough journey, and why not it’s just as much your journey as it is ours.
All the rewards have been custom designed and are limited runs for our Kickstarter campaign. Most of the rewards are ready for production, and will be ready to ship out early 2017, so keep an eye out for updates.
Some rewards may require additional paperwork. If you are appearing in the film, you will have to sign a release.
You must be over 18 or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian (who will count as your plus one) to attend the premiere or visit the set. Extras must also be over 18.
This fundraising campaign is all subject to applicable Kickstarter rules/regulations, and applicable UK law. If for any reason any of the rewards cannot be honoured, we will work with you in good faith to give you a substitute reward.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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