Sunset Rose is a high tension tale of murder and deception in 1940’s America. Len Bailey, a straight talking, enigmatic detective retreats to his usual secluded haunt: a beat up, isolated diner by the docks in the dead of night, an open case heavy on his mind. This time there is someone there waiting for him. Elusive and charming, Mary appears no more than a curious stranger, until one reveal shows their flirtatious rapport descend into a much darker, dangerous game. The film has a Lynchian style setting, and like all good noirs fate, sexual tension and a twist that keeps the audience on their toes.
Recreating the world of 1940s America in East London is an ambitious feat.
Here’s a breakdown of the costs:
FILM – Film is an expensive medium but a very rewarding one. In order to get our film from our heads and our notebooks onto the screen we need to cover film stock and processing costs.
EQUIPMENT – Fortunately we’ve got our camera and lenses for free, but to compose our beautiful shots we need some extra gear: a selection of lights to give that striking, cinematic look and a dolly, track, and sliders to keep us moving and grooving through those suspenseful, tension building shots.
LOCATION – Our location is a 1940s original railroad car diner from America, now situated in East London. It is beautiful and perfect but it’s a working diner. This means they’ve got to close up early and get their security team to stay late - it doesn’t come for free.
PRODUCTION DESIGN – We want to create our world of 1940s America in the most accurate way we can. This requires dressing our fantastic location and buying/renting props and costume to deliver that world to you.
CATERING – Our hardworking crew and cast are donating their time for free because they believe in the project and want to make the best film possible. A hardworking team needs feeding and watering to keep them alive and happy until 2am!
TRANSPORT – The London tubes aren’t 24 hour yet and we need two 7 seaters to get our exhausted cast and crew home at 2am once our shoot has wrapped. We’ll also use it to keep them warm in between takes! We also need to hire a van to transport the equipment.
KICKSTARTER FEES – Kickstarter and credit card processing fees equal 11% of our budget. But it’s worth it to bring this film to the lovely people of the Kickstarter community!
Film noir is stylish, sexy and undeniably cool. And it’s over 70 years old. Not only is it distinctive cinematically but is known for its engaging, suspenseful stories, twists and turns and memorable, charismatic characters. Watching early noir films like ‘The Maltese Falcon’, ‘Double Indemnity’ and ‘The Killers’, I was inspired by their innovative style, the energy of camera movement and the refreshing snappiness of dialogue. It felt timeless. It’s a genre that’s influencing cinema right up to this day, with films like Drive, Zodiac, No Country for Old Men, Memento and The Bourne Identity all considered ‘neo noirs’. It’s a genre that’s very close to our hearts and one we think is such an important part of film history we want to share it with the community.
Sunset Rose requires the very form that is so quintessential to film noir – the style, the look and the feel of film. We want to make a film that not only celebrates the noir genre and its influence on cinema today, but celebrates film, its craft and discipline often forgotten in the digital world we live in.
Our generation have grown up amidst the rise of cutting edge technology – these days anyone can make a film on their phone. Whilst this makes filmmaking hugely accessible, we feel that something has been lost – not just stylistically, but for the filmmakers in the process itself. We want to encourage other filmmakers to not just reach for digital but make an informed creative choice about using film. We want to show that film can be accessible and achieve results even on modest budgets.
And we haven’t forgotten about sound: we’ll be recording our sound on an analogue recorder in order to be completely faithful to our classic noir predecessors. This will give it the richness and warmth reminiscent of classic films.
We’re looking to build a community around our film, from those who are beloved to the classic genre to those who know nothing about film noir but think it looks pretty damn cool and want to get involved. We want to share this film and its progress with those who support it and bring them along for the ride. We are hugely excited and passionate about Sunset Rose and are confident that we can make the best film possible for our audience (that’s you!) with your support.
Our core crew are made up of young independent filmmakers who, despite our fresh faces, have been making award winning short films off our own backs for several years. Whilst shooting on film is new territory for us, we have had phenomenal support from experienced and talented industry professionals who for them, film is a native language. They have given up their time to become a part of Sunset Rose, in the camera and sound department, as well as our friends at Kodak that are supplying our stock. The level of belief and commitment that these people have had in our film make the possibilities for Sunset Rose even more exciting.
At the moment we’re in pre-production for Sunset Rose: we've found the perfect location, planned how we’re going to shoot the film, and got an incredibly talented and experienced crew made up of industry professionals who are lending their expertise to the project. During the campaign we’ll be continuing with pre-production - our next step is our test shoot, building our world through production design and casting: these are performance heavy roles and we want to attract the best possible actors. Our shooting dates are set for late November, with post-production in December. By the New Year we hope to have a completed noir to show you all. We know exactly what we need to make this ambitious film, now we need your support to make it happen.
Aside from that warm, fuzzy feeling inside, we want to reward you properly for playing a part in the making of Sunset Rose, whether its £2 or £5,000. Take a look at our rewards on the right and pick what you’d like to receive. Pledges start as low as £2 and range from beautiful black and white film stills taken by our amazing stills photographer, to attending our exclusive premiere in London. More than anything you’ll be allowing us to bring this cinematic, stylish genre to the wider community with Sunset Rose.
Risks and challenges
As with many independent films, we're working with a low budget which means a lot to shoot in a short space of time and with limited resources. We've been buried in our noir world planning and having meetings about Sunset Rose since April so we're going into this project as prepared as possible!
We've all been working in film for a long time and learnt from the pros.
On professional productions, pre production time is something that they don’t often have a lot of. As short film makers we're considering time our greatest asset and making sure that this time is being used to make ourselves as organised as possible for every moment of the shoot.
The crew are passionate about this project and our aim is to see Sunset Rose come to life!
- (21 days)