Re: A Pier is a feature-length documentary about Hastings Pier. I've been filming it for 9 years (!) and it's now in the final straight towards completion.
About the project
Everybody loves piers. They're focal points for our memories of the seaside; days of fun, fancy and freedom. Hastings Pier has more going for it than any other in this sense, because as well as offering the normal fish'n'chips day out, the pier used to turn very rock'n'roll at night.
From the 1950s through to the 2000s, pop royalty such as Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, Who, Kinks, T Rex, Sex Pistols, Clash, Elvis Costello, Nick Cave - among many dozens of others, plus superstar DJs such as Jon Digweed, Danny Howells and Sasha - appeared in the Ballroom at the end of the pier; perhaps the most unlikely setting in the world for such a rosta of talent over five decades.
In 2006 Hastings Pier closed down; in 2010 it was very nearly destroyed in an arson attack. Re: A Pier follows the story of its community-led salvation over a period of nine years, up to and including its projected reopening in Autumn 2015.
What's the money for?
The entire project has been self-funded, to keep it 100% independent, so I've paid for everything so far (with the help of a previous successful Crowdfunder callout in 2011). I'm now at the edit stage, having arranged 18 months of unpaid leave from my day job; and surprisingly, this 6-month post-production period is going to cost nearly as much as the entire 9-year shoot.
That's partly because I've now established a little production collective with four other practitioners. They're absolutely crucial to the project, they're all Hastings people, and they definitely need paying. The £3500 will go entirely to them.
Garry - 3D Computer Imaging Artist. Garry's at an early stage in his career but he's obviously going to go far. He's doing an immense amount of outstanding work for the pittance I've been able to find so far to pay him, and he's even jacked in his full-time job at the One Stop Shop to concentrate on getting his models of the pier (in three different periods) to the highest possible standard. Respect.
Margaret - Archive Researcher/Producer. Margaret's got a wealth of experience (BBC, Channel 4, etc) in finding and copyright-clearing the stills and footage that are going to be essential to the documentary. She's offered to work on the film for a very low fee, and she'll continue after its release to help me market it, and I'd basically be stuffed without her.
Aicha - People Finder/Researcher. Aicha's been working with me on the film for quite some time, and only recently for any money. We've still got a few totally key interviews to get in the can, and she's the person who's going to make them happen.
Agzilla - Musicmeister. The soundtrack for Re: A Pier will be so significant it'll be like an additional character. Agz's the man I trust above all others to get it right, and he's working for about a tenth of his market rate.