We would like to thank everyone that has donated to the production of our film. Combined with external fundraising, we have raised enough to fulfil our vision for The Acquaintance which we are ... View update
We would like to thank everyone that has donated to the production of our film. Combined with external fundraising, we have raised enough to fulfil our vision for The Acquaintance which we are extremely grateful for considering the extraordinary circumstances. We have now completed production with our cast and are in the post-production editing phase. Stay Tuned!
We are Pippa, Ruby, Ezara and Olamatu, an all-female crew currently studying film at Queen Mary University of London. As part of our third-year module, we are making a graduate film called The Acquaintance.
Our film follows the relationship between Irene and Ryan, both at opposite ends of life’s journey. Ryan is introduced to this world after a family emergency leaves him in the care of his neighbour, Irene. At first reluctant to the company, Irene attempts to continue her lonely routine with her suicide in mind, but she can’t shake off Ryan’s curiosity as he probes her life and belongings, Irene is put to task on her decision.
We want to tell a story that is equally emotional as it is lighthearted and thought-provoking. Our overarching goal is not to be manipulative or too sentimental with our approach. We’re making a Queen Mary University Graduation film, the money raised will contribute to achieving our visual storytelling aims as well as contributing to many graduate showreels. Please read all of our information below to see what your money will be put towards!
Irene is a retired architect, the expansive house she dwells in reflects her life’s work and her past ambitions. Recently widowed, Irene has lost the spark in her life and the appreciation for the house she had built with him, as such she has packed everything away and stripped the life out of the once characterful residence. Irene enjoyed looking after her family friend Zoe’s son Ryan with her husband when he was younger but as Ryan has grown up, the distance has grown with it and has been escalated by her husband’s death. Irene no longer participates in her village’s activities. Her routine evades contact with anyone. On her own, Irene has no one to challenge the way she feels. Until Ryan returns to her house and reopens the memories for her.
Ryan is an awkward only child that is prone to loneliness and gravitates more towards the company of older people. He is gentle at heart but somewhat absentminded often in his own world. He used to go to Irene’s house when he was younger and had a warm bond with her at one point in his life, but this faded as he grew up. He feels guilty about not visiting her anymore and is uneasy in the house with her while worrying he has abandoned her in some way especially after her husband’s death. Upon revisiting Irene’s house, what was once seen to him as a place of joy and warmth is now dark, still and empty. He no longer feels that he knows how to connect with Irene in the same way he used to.
Zoe is an erratic mother that is dealing with the stress of her husband being seriously ill and her being required to take time off of work to travel with him and provide him with the expensive medical care he needs. This has impacted the relationship she has with her son Ryan as she cannot be around as much to spend time with him anymore, and he is often put in the care of friends and other family members during this difficult time. She often prioritises her husband’s needs above others and thus hasn't noticed Irene's struggles. Zoe used to be closer to Irene when Ryan would enjoy as a younger boy visiting their neighbour, but she never fully connected with her the way Ryan did.
Our film is a character piece, so the visual design will aim to replicate how the characters are feeling at different stages of the film. Beginning with a desolate, alienating space that aims to emulate the likes of A Ghost Story (2017) and Ratcatcher (1999). Using narrow deep focus shots to capture the emptiness of the house and personal close-ups, to transitioning to lighter tones and wider framing when companionship is found.
We have already sourced a great location, a large, secluded house with scope to be transformed into a desolate space with the money raised from our campaign. Our production design will aim to address how we can dress the location using props in order to create Irene’s home. We want to give the impression that she has given up on life and so her house has to display this i.e. no pictures on the wall, furniture covered in white sheets, items starting to collect dust. The house itself also needs to look excluded from society.
Our goal: Raise £2000
Where this will go
- Fund the actors
- Support the cast and crew on set
- Design a visually enriched space that captures our vision
- Travel expenses
- Festival submission costs
Ezara Hillier, Director
Ezara is a student currently in her final year of film studies. She has experience in stunt assisting, directing and scriptwriting. She hopes to get into either Live Editing or Stunts when she finishes her university course. In the past, she has directed for her school's production of Les Miserable and a cooking video showcasing how it is possible to break down the stereotypes of women cooking in the kitchen. She has also directed interviews for Barnes Film Festival and has also assisted in directing music videos. Most recently, she directed Disembodied Unity, an abstract piece showcasing the feeling of being trapped through the use of stock motion.
Pippa Ager, Writer, Director of Photography
Pippa is an experienced director of photography and plans to pursue this role professionally after university. Having previously worked on a variety of projects both fictional and documentary based, she is currently employed as the Students Union videographer. Filming and editing events and campaigns, most notably the This Girl Can campaign in November 2019. Pippa has experience writing scripts for both her first and second-year modules at university, gaining a 1st in all three scripts written, she is excited to share and visually bring to life her script for The Acquaintance.
Ruby Deighton-Smythe, Sound Recordist and Design, Casting Director
Ruby has had much experience (both professional and voluntary) solely recording and monitoring sound on the production sets and has also hosted auditions and been the casting director for other past university-related projects. She is enthusiastic about approaching The Acquaintance with the skillsets she has acquired and plans to turn her hand to the sound design of the film with a dark and eerie tone in mind, utilising more ambient non-diegetic sound effects to create the right atmosphere. Sound quality and clarity are of utmost importance for this piece, and her vision for the layered but also relatable characters has been well reflected in the careful casting choices made, which will be exciting to see unfold during production.
Olamatu Jabbie, 1st AD, Lighting Designer
Olamatu has a background in theatre with experience in the lighting and sound department. Being a technician for drama productions at the university’s theatre company she has developed a creative style for lighting the stage, that she will transfer to the screen. Olamatu has directed multiple shows for the company that focuses on the way people interact with one another and how they deal with their emotions. She is excited to work on this project that highlights the different ways loneliness can manifest and affect an array of people despite their age.
Thank you so much for taking the time to check out our Greenlit Project! This is an incredibly important project for our crew, anything donated will be greatly appreciated for our final graduation film. Please make sure you take a look at our donation perks if any of them appeal to you. If you can't afford to donate, then please consider sharing our page so we can reach as many people!
Your donations will help us bring to life this emotional, exciting and poignant story of companionship and we are so excited to share the results with you.
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- Flexible Funding