The Withnail generation had children... D R Hood's second fiction feature after acclaimed debut 'Wreckers' with Benedict Cumberbatch
The Withnail generation had children... D R Hood's second fiction feature after acclaimed debut 'Wreckers' with Benedict Cumberbatch
JOIN OUR FILM FAMILY
Please join us in making our second fiction feature THIS FAMILY, sex, death, cooking, and a poetic journey through the life of a family....
We're the film family who made 'Wreckers' with Benedict Cumberbatch, Claire Foy and Shaun Evans, our debut feature which has been seen all over the world despite its modest budget.
We have already begun filming THIS FAMILY in fragments over time.
Now let the drama begin!
We hope you enjoyed our interview above: we've also embedded links throughout our campaign page to some of our lovingly crafted test films for you to watch.
THIS FAMILY - INTRODUCTION
From director D R Hood:
This film is partly a love song to the childhood of Owen, at the heart of my story. Was it as beautiful as his family has remembered it? I want to explore what ties home can have for us even long after we have apparently grown up.
I began writing THIS FAMILY even before 'Wreckers' and the family of characters has grown with me till they are bursting to get onto the screen.
I hope that THIS FAMILY will have resonances for you and for many others across the world. Love them or hate them, familes – their secrets, their bonds, their anger and their love – are the crucible of life.
Myself and my team are already filming THIS FAMILY over time with our main shoot planned for late spring 2016. We've filmed landscapes, we've filmed pigs, horses, and houses and we've laid our hands on some fabulous archive footage and photographs from the 1960s and 1970s for the backstory of the family.
Now we need to film the main drama and we need your help with this.
Our Kickstarter campaign is simple but ambitious: it is about helping us pay our actors and our crew for the five week shoot that will make the film fly.
THIS FAMILY - CAST ATTACHED
We're thrilled to have the following cast members attached to THIS FAMILY subject to schedule and financing.
Diana is attached to play the matriarch of the family, Marianne. Diana rose to fame playing Julia Flyte in the iconic TV series of Brideshead Revisited. I have wanted her to play Marianne ever since seeing her in the savage play 'The Wide Sargasso Sea'.
Robert is attached as Owen's wild younger brother Danny. Robert is the brilliant young actor from Channel Four's 'Misfits' and soon to be seen in blockbuster 'Geostorm'.
Sinead will play hapless Auntie Anna who has a bit of a thing for her nephew Owen. She is a Mike Leigh and National theatre regular, last seen as Queen Victoria in 'Mr Turner'. Sinead played Sharon in 'Wreckers' and I have wanted to work with her again ever since.
THIS FAMILY – THE STORY
Owen re-enters the mysterious house of his childhood. He's still in thrall to his mother, Marianne, a starlet in her youth – at least in her own mind. The family gather for her last birthday. They slaughter a pig and prepare for battle...
Three men in the older generation and two in the younger: Marianne fights to keep them all in her power. In a bid for freedom, Owen pleads with his ex-partner Caroline to join him.
History, memory, ghosts, half-understood secrets, conversations in doorways, aunties, animals, sex, death and cooking... Through it all, Owen quests for Caroline like Launcelot through the old house. But she's on a quest of her own, and she may leave the country soon.
Our film will be poetic and funny. It's about learning to live life, and it also evokes a moment in history: the older generation of the family were young in the late 60s/early 70s and the younger generation are living the fallout from their parents' dramas and lost ideals.
On a deeper level THIS FAMILY is about lifecycles and generations passing through a single place. Owen and Caroline too, will pass from this house, and even the moors beyond the house will change. The younger generation are always the true inheritors.
Exploring that mystery of time is why the film has stayed with me.
I hope you will be able to help us put this family on the screen at this moment in our history.
THE FORM OF THE FILM
We began filming last year, and we have found an extraordinary new form to tell the story, placing the core drama in a mosaic of fragments of experience and memory, 'a documentary of the soul'.
We will use rehearsal and theatre techniques with our actors to liberate their performances and keep the film light on its feet. A box of old toys dragged from the attic will expose the roles the characters have played since childhood. The forest and the moor outside the house cut in like ghosts of a landscape. To help understand the concept think of 'The Arbor' (the theatre inserts), 'Dogville', 'Anna Karenina' (though not with a $30m budget). Theatre techniques - but in an entirely filmic way.
The above link takes you to a test film we made exploring what it would be like to have a ghostly presence in your family... (there is a ghost in our film).
The above link takes you to a short film we made about a location we love. We have been very inspired by this house and its owners, with whom we are speaking about THIS FAMILY.
The above link takes you to our sizzle reel.
OUR FILM FAMILY
We are celebrating ten years at our company at LIKELY STORY. Our short film, 'The Other Man', won the UKFC/Kodak prize at the Edinburgh Film Festival 2006 and continues to be shown worldwide. Our first feature film 'Wreckers' stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Claire Foy and Shaun Evans. 'Wreckers' premiered at the 55th BFI London International Film Festival October 2011, where I was nominated for best British debut as director. 'Wreckers'' US premiere was at Palm Springs International Film Festival in January 2012. 'Wreckers' opened theatrically in the UK January 2012 to excellent reviews and won the Perspectives award at Moscow IFF June 2012. 'Wreckers' has screened on BBC1 and 2, with cinema release in Korea and Japan and VOD release worldwide.
Here are some reviews of 'Wreckers'
Here's the 'Wreckers' trailer
And here's the Curzon Q&A from 'Wreckers' with two actors we just love
We are working again with the same predominantly female creative team from 'Wreckers':
D R Hood - Writer/ Director
Prior to 'Wreckers', I directed multi-award winning short films 'The Other Man' with BAFTA winner Anna Maxwell Martin, and 'Journey Man', with Ruth Madoc. 'Journey Man' was a global festival hit, was nominated for the TCM classics prize, won many major awards and had eight months’ theatrical exhibition in the UK. I have had work commissioned by Granada and Channel 4, and wrote the screenplay for Tim Krabbe’s cult novel 'Vertraging' for Dutch company 24FPS. I have also directed for theatre and audio, including audio versions of Aristophanes’ 'The Clouds' with Andrew Sachs and extracts from Homer’s 'Iliad' with David Warner.
'A strikingly confident voice here which marks [Hood] out as a talent to watch' Fionnuala Halligan, Screen International on 'Wreckers'
'A debut that changed the face of British Cinema' - Artificial Eye on 'Wreckers'
Annemarie Lean-Vercoe – Director of Photography
Annemarie Lean-Vercoe is the first cinematographer ever selected as one of Screen International’s ‘Stars of Tomorrow’. Annemarie studied cinematography at the National Film and Television School in the UK, where she was the recipient of the Freddie Francis scholarship. Since graduating in 2003 she has shot award winning work across Africa, Asia, North America and Europe. Annemarie has worked several times with acclaimed British directors Michael Winterbottom ('Everyday') and Mat Whitecross ('Moving to Mars', Grierson award 2009). 'Wreckers' was Annemarie‘s first feature as director of photography, swiftly followed by 'Honeytrap'. She has also lensed for television, including 'DCI Banks'.
Claire Pringle - Editor
Claire edited my award-winning short film 'The Other Man', as well as 'Wreckers', and is a brilliant editor of family relationships and stories. She has edited three other indie features and many shorts, and has also edited many comedy slots for Stewart Lee and other comedians.
Anna Best – contributing artist
I saw a short film about childhood and memory made by Anna last year and asked her to contribute to our 'fragments of memory' and to act as a dramaturge to our film. As an artist, Anna is interested in investigating 'the local and particular'. She has made projects with The Barbican Art Gallery, Danielle Arnaud, Beaconsfield, The Photographers’ Gallery, Camden Arts Centre and Tate Modern. She is currently working between rural Dorset and London, making video work featuring land and family.
Simon Onwurah and Idris Ahmed are the producer team that enabled 'Wreckers'' outstanding production values, and they are working together with us again on THIS FAMILY.
Simon Onwurah - Producer
Simon's work as a producer spans both drama and documentary. As co-founder of Non-Aligned Films Simon produced several films for his sister director, Ngozi Onwurah: her futuristic feature film 'Welcome II The Terrodome', Toronto film festival winner 'Hangtime', 'Coffee Coloured Children', and Berlin awarded 'The Body Beautiful'. Simon teamed up with Dictynna on her Edinburgh award winning short film 'The Other Man' and produced her debut feature 'Wreckers'. Simon is also a hugely experienced line producer who has produced work across factual, entertainment, and drama-doc for national and international networks including the BAFTA nominated series 'Paul Merton in China'.
Idris Ahmed - Line Producer
Idris’ journey started in location management with major broadcasters and independent production companies. Recent projects include 'You, Me and Them' for Hat Trick, Channel 4’s multi award-winning comedy 'Fresh Meat', and the BBC serial crime drama 'Good Cop' starring Boardwalk Empire’s Stephen Graham. Idris also worked on the Emmy award winning 'Sugar Rush 2', and with Michael Fassbender on two series of Sky One’s supernatural drama 'Hex'. Idris moved into line producing, working with us on 'Wreckers' and has also produced a short film, 'Telescope'.
James Appleton - Executive Producer - Storyhouse Pictures
James is a hugely experienced former short form / branded content film producer / director. He is now building a future in feature film development and production with his company Storyhouse. James is coming on board to exec THIS FAMILY with a generous offer of equipment invested from his digital cinema facilities company Cameraworks. LIKELY STORY and STORYHOUSE: a winning combination....
Nora Vogt - Production Assistant
Giovanni Compagnoni - Assistant Editor/Camera
Both Nora and Giovanni are award winning graduates from London Film Academy where Dictynna is visiting tutor. Nora is originally from Oslo... perhaps Ibsen makes her partial to a family drama? As well as assisting us, she is currently producing her first short fiction film, also aided by Kickstarter. Giovanni was LFA's student of the year on graduating in 2015. As well as assisting on THIS FAMILY, he is working in camera and editing on a web series and indie feature.
If you have got this far you may be in the need of some refreshment On the theme of mothers and family, here are some of the pigs who may be in our film:
FUND OUR CROWD
Risks and challenges
THIS FAMILY is a big ensemble of ten key characters. With Diana, Robert and Sinead attached, we will start casting the remaining characters six weeks before shooting (preproduction will start shortly after the Kickstarter campaign in March 2016). This is the strategy that secured us Benedict, Claire and Shaun on 'Wreckers'. We look for really fascinating matches between character and actor and we are proud of our track record in casting our indies.
Working with Storyhouse Pictures, we have been offered a fantastic investment in the form of all our camera and lighting equipment.
We also have a substantial offer of investment to support the essential post-production phase of THIS FAMILY.
Artificial Eye have distributed major arthouse hits such as 'The Great Beauty' and '45 Years'. They snapped up 'Wreckers' for distribution and we are thrilled to have their interest in working with us on THIS FAMILY also.
We are confident that THIS FAMILY will be successful at festivals and seen worldwide.
NOW WE NEED YOUR HELP TO MAKE THIS FAMILY
Specifically we need your help to shoot the core drama.
We have set our goal with Kickstarter at £30K. While we are aware that this is an ambitious Kickstarter goal for a film without guns (though we do have a ghost), we are actually hoping that with your help we can raise more than our target.
The more money we can raise, the more time we can have with our actors so that we can make the film to the perfection of our ambitions for it.
We are also looking for investment through the UK Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (open to UK taxpayers). If you are interested in participating in our SEIS please do contact us through our website www.likelystory.co.uk/thisfamily.html.
We plan to finish the film with enough time to enter it for the Berlin Film Festival in October 2016.
IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT THE MONEY
We would love you to get involved with our film.
If you don't have money to offer but love the idea of THIS FAMILY, there's other ways you can help us make the film.
We're looking for old toys (from the 1970s or before) for our actors to work with and archive photos and footage from the period, particularly slide film. Do go and like our Facebook page www.facebook.com/likelystoryfilms and we'll post updates there with invitations to get involved.
If you love the sound of THIS FAMILY do tweet about the campaign and the film using the hashtag #thisfamilyfilm...
And use good old-fashioned word of mouth by telling your friends and family about us.
Above all of course we are looking to you as our audience.
In the words of Hymie Gouldman, ART FOR ARTS SAKE, MONEY FOR GOD'S SAKE.
PLEASE FUND OUR CROWD AND JOIN US IN MAKING THIS FAMILY HAPPEN!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)