Cat Skin is a coming of age drama with a twist of suspense
The film tells the story of Cat and April. Cat is a photography student at her local college in Brighton. The recent death of her father and her mother’s deteriorating state of health has left Cat to take care of herself. She is an intelligent yet introverted individual considered by many to be a social outcast, remaining on the fringe of the usual social college life. April, a music student at her college, captures her attention and Cat becomes infatuated with her classmate . April is a confident, outgoing girl, extremely popular and attractive. However, there is more to her than meets the eye. April's overprotective mother keeps her on a tight leash whilst her jealous boyfriend grows more possessive. Cat is willing to pursue April, by any means. She captures April from afar on film, but the distances between the pair reduces. Cat and April soon fall into each others lives and develop a close friendship which will be tested to its utmost limit.
WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
Cat Skin is a very personal story. It centres on self-discovery and acceptance, as well as, desiring the seemingly impossible and to never let go of your dreams. It draws its emotions from personal experiences accumulated over the years. The film delves into despair, and the hope of finding the one person, the closest of friends that will help you come to terms with it. The film aims to blur the boundaries of friendship and relationship and to ultimately define a love that transcends gender.
HOW DID THIS ALL START?
It all started about 4 years ago with a simple drawing of the character Cat. She wore a pair of headphones around her neck and clutched a stills camera. The sketch hung on my wall for several weeks. Eventually, a second character joined her - this was April wearing a green cardigan over a white dress, and from these two sketches hung side-by-side the story grew.
What followed was a short film, which we completed in 2010.
You can view the short trailer here:
HOW WILL THE FULL LENGTH FILM BE DIFFERENT?
I am very proud of the short film. Considering it was made
on a shoe string budget and shot over a long weekend it is one my favourite
pieces of work and it was a fantastic experience making it. I’ve made several films since, but there’s
always been a longing to return to Cat and April and not to expand but to
complete their story. The original short film only told one part of a much larger story and thus feels incomplete.
I cannot lay these characters to rest just yet. However, I fully intend to
treat the feature length version as a new project. In order to keep things
fresh, the visual style will have a much darker tone, the characters have been revised and will be re-cast
to suit the full story.
MEET THE TEAM
DANIEL GRASSKAMP - WRITER/DIRECTOR/PRODUCER
I studied Film Production in the UK at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham and graduated in 2009 at the age of 22. I specialized in Directing and completed projects shot on Super8, 16mm and Full HD. After graduating with Honours I produced and directed the short film Cat Skin, which kickstarted my professional career. Since then I've worked in the TV and Corporate industry as a video editor and camera operator for multiple international companies whilst continuing to direct fictional short films. I have extensive experience using Industry leading equipment such as the RED Epic camera and high end post-production software (Avid Media Composer, Adobe After Effects and DaVinci Resolve) allowing for an excellent technical understanding of image quality.
Here's a short showreel of my work.
However, technical expertise isn't everything. Story and character are what matter most to me. Throughout the films I've made there's an underlying thread of interest I have with duration, also known as the long take. This was explored in the short film version of Cat Skin. This shooting preference refrains from over editing and allows a shot to linger on a character. This enables the viewer to experience the scene captured in real time, to share that moment with the character as they battle their thoughts and feelings. This is a great visual style to really engage the audience with the characters that drive the story.
JONI JUUTILAINEN - DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Joni is the Director of Photography on Cat Skin. He has been working his way up within the
camera department since 2002. He is one of the founders of the Finnish
company OTSO Film and works as a freelance Cinematographer. I've worked with Joni on numerous projects over the years including the original short film Cat Skin. We have developed a strong working relationship. It is an absolute joy to have him back on the team for this project.
MARJA-LISA HEDENQUIST - PRODUCTION DESIGN
Marja-Lisa is a set, costume designer and maker with a 1st class honours degree in Costume with Performance Design from the Arts University in Bournemouth. She has experience in designing sets and costumes (and making/building) working in Sweden and in England. In 2011 she did costumes for The Perfect Day, a short film which won The Best Student Film Award at The New York International Film Festival. She is very excited to be a part of the wonderful world of Cat Skin!
"With the designs, I want to convey the two protagonists' different backgrounds and personalities. Ultimately this contrast will show how love
transcends class, appearance, cultural background and gender." Marja-Lisa
LIZZIE HINGLEY - SET DECORATOR
Lizzie has been working in props since completing a Degree in Critical Fine Art Practice in 2010 at the University of Brighton. She started working for companies based in London making props. She recently opened her own prop making company based in Brighton called Brighton Props.
Lizzie was drawn to prop making as she enjoys solving problems with a creative eye and the diverse hands on nature that comes with the job - with lots of different exciting challenges.
"I am looking to really bring the characters to life - each persons identity within the film is so unique. I am really excited to be involved in this project and can't wait to begin using props to sculpt each personality to give them a real history and back story." Lizzie
SIAN REVILL - MAKEUP ARTIST
Siân first began studying makeup artistry in 2009, since then she has worked in all aspects of the makeup industry from Film to Fashion. She is currently studying in Los Angeles at Cinema Makeup School to further her skills. Her recent credits include; The 65th Primetime Emmys and Britney Spears' latest video.
"I am aiming to show the major differences between the characters with their makeup. Makeup can help to convey the journey that a character has been on, a lot of my makeup designs will be focusing on this due to the emotional journey that happens through the course of the film. I aim for the actor to feel that they are truly the character by the time they leave my makeup chair." Sian
SOUNDS GREAT! HOW DO I GET INVOLVED?
You can pledge any amount from as little as £1 in return for a reward. Every little bit helps!
Spread the word. Tell your friends, family and even your neighbour about the project. Encourage them to get involved. Share a link to this page on your Twitter and Facebook accounts. The more people we reach, the greater the chances are that the film gets made! Please remember that this is a all or nothing campaign. Your card will not be debited until we reach our goal. If we don't reach our goal we won't receive any of your pledges and everyone will be very sad.
Most importantly, participate in the campaign in every way you feel you can.
WHAT DO I GET IN RETURN FOR MY PLEDGE?
Besides a huge thank you from everyone involved and in knowing you played a
part in getting a film project off the ground, there are also some great
rewards in exchange for every pledge ranging from as little as £1. Get a copy of the final film, have lunch with me and the two stars of our film or join us for an advance screening at a very special venue. There are many to choose from and every single pledge will go directly into making the film. See the full list on the top right of this page.
HOW WILL MY PLEDGE BE USED?
Our core team of incredibly talented and professional individuals are passionate about the project and are more than willing to waive their fee and donate their time.
However, when making a film, things can quickly become very
expensive. Our funding goal is £15,000. This is the minimum to get the film off the ground. We have planned for an 18 day shoot and your pledge will cover everything from location hire, kit rental, transportation, accommodation for cast and crew, along with many unforeseen costs
that might accumulate during production. Therefore we have included a 10% contingency plan within the our overall goal accounting for any unforeseen additional costs.
To demonstrate this better, we have created a simple budget breakdown for "Cat Skin".
HOW DO I PLEDGE?
If you've read this far you must be interested in becoming one of our backers. It's easy, simply click the big green button to the right of our video at the top of the page. Then you're pretty much there. Kickstarter will ask you to confirm your pledge and the award type followed by a quick prompt to sign in. Signing up is quick; you can even do it through Facebook.
HOW CAN I GET IN TOUCH?
Either at firstname.lastname@example.org, the Kickstarter comments, or via my Twitter and Facebook page.
If you have any questions or suggestions for rewards that you would like, please just leave a comment.
On completion, we will set our targets high and submit the film to an International Film Festival with the aim of securing theatrical distribution. However, the main purpose of making this film is to get the film out there for everyone to see. There are many alternative distribution platforms to choose from such as video on demand services and online streaming.
Filmmaking can be a little crazy and unpredictable but the trick is to believe in the project and take on the challenge. We have a script with a story and characters that we are passionate about and want to share with the world. In order to do this we need to assemble a great team, cast the right actors, secure locations and get the whole thing shot as near to perfection as possible. It is almost impossible to guarantee everything will go exactly as planned. However, it's an exciting prospect, to venture on a journey, to create something form nothing and aim to come out with a film that all of us are proud of. This project is supported by a talented team of creative professionals, who will strive to make the best film possible. I would like to thank all of you in advance. Without your help this project would not get off the ground.
THE VIDEO PRODUCTION DIARIES
Behind the Scenes Production Diaries showing the creative process and interviews from the cast and crew on set. Secret links sent to you directly.
Including Rewards: All the above
A SIGNED SPECIAL EDITION DVD OF THE FEATURE FILM.
This special DVD copy also includes the short film that inspired the feature and two more of my short films, as well as an exclusive behind the scenes featurette.
Including Rewards: All the above.
A SIGNED SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY OF THE FEATURE FILM. This special BLU-RAY also includes the short film that inspired the feature and two more of my short films, as well as an exclusive behind the scenes feature. Including Rewards: All the above except the DVD.
SIGNED FRAMABLE PRINTS AND STILLS.
A selection of prints and stills signed by the cast and crew include:
Character Photos (Cat & April)
Concept Art Work (costume and set design)
On-Set/Behind the scenes Production Stills.
Including Rewards: All the above
THE PHOTOSHOOT. Get your photo taken by the professionals. Get comfortable in Sian's Make-up chair as she get's you ready to have your photo taken by Joni our Director of Photography. You will receive prints and digital copies of your photos. Includes all the above rewards except the Special Screening. The session will take place in London. You will need to provide your own travel and accommodation.
THE BRUNCH. Have brunch with me and our two stars of the film followed by a sneak peak into the edit suite to view a 10min clip straight from the rough cut. You will need to provide your own travel to either London or Brighton.
Including Rewards: All the above except the Very Special Screening and The Photoshoot
THE VISITOR. Join us on set for a day in Brighton, mingle with the cast and crew and feature in one of our behind the scenes production videos (if you're not camera shy). You will need to provide your own travel and accommodation.
Including Rewards: All the above except the Very Special Screening, The Brunch and and The Photoshoot
TEST SCREENING AND SPECIAL THANKS.
You're invited to a test screening where we will discuss what you liked and didn't like to help shape the final cut of the film. You will also receive a Special Thanks in the film credits.
You will have to provide your own travel and accommodation.
Including Rewards: All the above except the Very Special Screening, The Brunch, The Visitor, The Extra and The Photoshoot
THE CAMERA + TEST SCREENING AND SPECIAL THANKS.
Receive Cat's most personal item - her stills camera. This prop will be used in key scenes throughout the film. We can't guarantee it'll still be operational or in the best condition by the end of the shoot
Including Rewards: All the above except the Very Special Screening, The Brunch, The Visitor and The Extra,