As a filmmaker, community plays a huge role in getting things made and seen. I wouldn’t have made any films at all if it wasn’t for the network of talent that I’ve got to know over the last twelve years of being in the industry. Since my first film screened at Raindance in 2006, I’ve formed collaborations through festivals and networking events that have been integral to my growth as a director.
In 2009, I directed the trailer to the 17th Raindance Film Festival alongside David Procter.
The success I had with my last short, CRACK, was down to these relationships and the sharing of knowledge and experience from fellow creatives.
After we were nominated for a BIFA, this sense of community became all the more important. When the nominations were announced, I was approached by Michael Fassbender and Conor McCaughan’s production company, DMC Film. They were looking for new scripts from emerging talent to produce with the new social network Vero and requested that I send them what I was currently working on. We began to develop the project together, and I am excited to say that we are now going in to pre-production on that film.
The collaborators on this new film – production, crew, post – are all from the same network of people that I’ve built relationships with since that first screening, and I’m excited to be taking the next part of the journey with them.
THIS IS THE WINTER is a dystopian thriller set in the North East of England, where I originate from, and deals with the social and political worries that the region has. What has been amazing is that DMC and Vero have encouraged me to be ambitious with it. The slate of films that they have commissioned so far is extremely diverse, and what they have proven is that they want the voice of the writer and director to be heard, ensuring that the film remains true to its original vision.
#veropresents: A new platform for collaborations
The film has been commissioned as part of an exciting project called ‘Vero Presents.’ Vero, as a concept, is all about that community of creators and collaborators. It’s a platform designed for sharing, not just your work, but your friends work, work that inspired you or even the book that you’re reading or a song that you love. Films – and the people who make them – are a big part of the Vero community.
Over the past two years, Vero has backed a range of projects from both emerging and established filmmakers including Max Joseph’s Vero Original documentary series “Charismatic Thinker”, the forthcoming short “Keepsake” directed by Helena Coan and starring Patsy Ferran, Ben Aston’s “Halfterlife” and several projects produced by DMC Film including Kibwe Tavares’ “Robot & Scarecrow” (starring Holliday Grainger and Jack O’Connell), BAFTA-winner Asim Chaudhry’s directorial debut “Love Pool” and a new project from BAFTA-nominated writer-director Charlotte Regan.
Something that blew me away as a filmmaker was this idea that there is a network out there that not only helps get your work seen, but also helps you produce new work. This is something that makes Vero truly stand out, as right now getting shorts funded is incredibly difficult.
In essence it all comes down to the idea of community, a networking platform that helps you meet like-minded people and showcases your talent. The people at Vero are always on the network, seeking new artists and looking for future collaborators.
I highly recommend checking it out, and if you do, add me as a friend!