This is the story of Samuel, just one of many young victims of eco-anxiety, who decides to take his survival into his own hands.
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Samuel lives every day in fear that the world is on the brink of collapse. As a result he never leaves his room. However, it is soon apparent that he is not just hiding from the perils of the physical world but also hiding from the reality of life at home, where he is struggling to adjust to life with his new stepmum.
For the youngest among us the future can appear to contain nothing but disaster and destruction, but hiding from the world will achieve nothing. By confronting his fears Samuel learns that he is not alone and finally connects with his stepmum and embraces the world outside his bedroom walls.
This drama explores the concept of environmental concern as a debilitating form of anxiety in a somewhat lighthearted scenario whilst also exploring the often complicated dynamic between stepparent and child.
Furthermore, the film briefly touches upon the importance of learning how to swim, as drowning has been noted to be one of the highest causes of accidental death for children and a shocking one out of three children in the UK still cannot swim.
It was only towards the end of last year when I discovered the term "eco-anxiety" and realised how prevalent this was especially amongst young children and I knew immediately that I wanted to tell the story from the perspective of a young child.
This film is not meant to be an accurate representation of what it is like to suffer from eco-anxiety but a somewhat exaggerated example of how, for the generation who have the most to look forward to, the future can appear to be nothing but a dead end. For this reason Samuel feels trapped. He confines himself to where he feels safest and cuts out all contact with the uncontrollable variables the outside world presents and by doing so cuts out any interactions and relationships which could make it a future not to fear but rather one to anticipate.
Due to recent events the image of Samuel barricading himself in his room echoes the actions and feelings of people around the world and therefore can be seen to be more relatable than ever.
The following are the Heads of Departments but we have an absolutely amazing team who you can find out all about on our pages @aanshortfilm!
Jen Lim-Writer/Director @sjenl
Jen began filmmaking at the Beijing Film Academy where she wrote, directed, and edited her first short and discovered a passion for screenwriting, before returning to the UK to resume her studies at the University of Bristol. Since graduating she has worked in a multitude of roles on and off set and is currently freelancing as a videographer and photographer whilst also a Screenskills AD Trainee, but her real passion is writing and directing character driven stories. She is one of the Last Word Film Fund winners for Apocalypse Anytime Now which is her most ambitious film to date.
Tracy Kiryango-Producer @karmicdelight
Tracy was born and raised in an African household in Gothenburg, Sweden. Her passion for deciphering peoples motives, and encouraging vulnerability and openness led to her studying Journalism at University. After graduating, she combined her studies with her love for film. Tracy has spent the past 6 years perfecting her writing, while filming and directing short documentaries under her company ASE Productions. She debuted her first short film 'Colour Blind' which she wrote, directed and produced, while still staying true to her ‘fly on the wall’ style.
Markus Ilschner-Director of Photography @markusilschner_dp
German born Cinematographer Markus started his career early in his childhood. Capturing family events, school trips and shooting own short films he soon found himself diving into the magic world of cinema. After graduation from school he started an apprenticeship at the famous Bavaria Film Studios in Munich, which helped him gaining experience and also allowed him to break into the industry as a camera trainee. Since 2008 Markus worked his way up in the camera department on national and international sets for feature, commercial, drama and non-fiction work.
Ana Mlynarska has a masters in fine art and graphic design. She also has a degree in Editing from The Polish National Film School in Lodz, where she was awarded a scholarship and graduated with a distinction. Whilst there she was tutored by some of Poland’s most respected editors, including J.Kaminski (Ida and Cold War). Now based in London, she has worked as an assembly editor on the HBO show Strikeback and the forthcoming BBC show Malory Towers. She just finished cutting 'Shalborne,' an independent feature film and the BFI funded short film 'Mermaids.' She is a Bafta Crew member.
Anita Pico-Production Designer @anita_picoteando
Driven by her passion for art, film & design, Anita directed her first short film "Camille" at twenty-two years old, winning the Audience Award at Durham Film Festival. Born in the north of Spain, she graduated with a Summa Culm Laude Degree at Saginaw Valley State University, where she explored her art in different fields, including theatre, design or photography. She currently works in film productions as Art Department and Digital Designer.
Jess Venn-Costume Designer @venndesigns
Pursuing a career in performance and cinema was inevitable for Jess, and armed with her BA from the Arts University Bournemouth, a flair for creativity and an affinity for storytelling Jess has previously designed for award-winning period short films, such as ‘The Fence’ directed by William Stone, and ‘Spacemen’ directed by Edward Zorab. A lover of culture, research and a quirky character Jess prides herself on being able to adapt to any genre be it stage or screen.
Mhran Amer-Assistant Director @themhranamer
With a great passion for films and the art of moving pictures, after years of self-learning and a number of degrees in different subjects, Mhran ended up studying a Masters of Arts degree in Filmmaking at the University for The Creative Arts.
Hollie Buhagiar-Composer @hollieboohiya
Hollie Buhagiar is an award-winning Gibraltarian composer who graduated first from Leeds College of Music then with a masters from the National Film and Television School. Hollie's experience includes work for Amazon, Channel 4, BFI, and BBC. Her projects have won various prestigious awards, including a Porsche Award, a Gold British Arrow and the McLaren Award for Best British Animation. One of her works "Poles Apart" won the 2018 British Short Animation BAFTA. 2020 thus far has seen her take home the award for Best Music at the Top Indie Awards and was also honoured this past year with Gibraltar's first ever Extraordinary Achievement Award for her work in the arts. She is also an accomplished session vocalist having worked on everything from prime time television shows such as "Doctor Who" to worldwide advertising campaigns.
Yin Lee-Sound Designer @yiingtzzy
Yin is an international sound designer and music composer, born and raised in Taiwan. She loves to explore any new potential and possibilities for sounds, so after receiving her BFA from the filmmaking department at Taipei National University of the Arts she studied MA Sound Design course at the National Film and Television School. Her recent short film ‘Shoal’ was shortlisted in BAFTA Student Film Awards. She also worked as a dialogue editor on Amazon Prime’s TV documentary series - ‘Take Us Home: Leeds United’ in 2019.
Matteo di Cugno-Sound Recordist @soundbanana
Matteo is one half of Soundbanana, in charge of the location recording. He has done location sound for about 5 years and has 8 features under his belt, the most affluent being: HOD: “Election Night” from Neil Monaghan. He has also worked as a Sound Assistant on “The Sky Is Pink” with Priyanka Chopra and as a daily player on Summerland 2020. His experience spins mostly around feature film drama and comedy but also short films, corporate videos and TV.
Samuel-Ryan Le Rasle
Stepmum-Nicolle Smartt @nicollesmartt
Nicolle can be seen most recently in the Neil Gaiman production of “Good Omens” (first available on Amazon Prime) which aired on BBC2 at the beginning of the year. Nicolle has also appeared in the BBC’s Doctor Who Christmas special “The Husbands of Riversong.” Nicolle also trained in musical theatre and has performed as a featured backing vocalist for ITV entertainment shows such as the Xfactor and tonight at the palladium. Currently she is working on a feature film titled “Upon the edge” due for release in 2021.
Marcus trained at The Arden School of Theatre in Manchester, graduating in 2002. Since then his acting work has been very varied, working extensively in theatre and in very rewarding screen jobs.
Lifeguard-Tom Patient @tom_patient
Tom Patient is an English actor, writer, director, producer. Holding both a Masters and Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Exeter, in 2018, he made his first award-winning short film, Apostate, to commemorate the centenary anniversary marking the end of the First World War and to attach product to his name. Since then, Tom has worked on other short and feature length projects, taking the lead roles in his last two films: The Monochrome Man and The Hanged.
Silvana is an actor, singer and deviser/improviser, with many years' experience working in both live and recorded performance. Along with performing in shows and films, she also creates her own work, often delving in to the mythical, the mystical and the ancient, and collaborates with others to devise performances.
Many successful films have been made as a result of the outreach of this platform and generosity of many and even though running a crowdfunding campaign is another challenge in itself we look forward to reaching people all around the world with a film which explores topics that are extremely current and universal.
We have been awarded a small amount of funding from the Last Word Film Fund, but it will by no means cover all the costs and our target of £2500 is the minimum we need to cover our basic production costs. We are extremely grateful that everyone on board is generously giving up their time to make this project a reality so of course we want to make the film the best it can be and showcase the team's hard work and dedication. Although we have tried to keep costs to a bare minimum there are still the unavoidable costs that come as a result of embarking on any project, especially during the current climate where many costs have increased, and so we really appreciate every single penny donated in this incredibly difficult time for everyone.
The funding raised through this campaign will go towards these production costs:
- Set Design
As a film about eco-anxiety we are of course taking every consideration we can to limit our environmental impact from only using reusable bottles on set to partnering with businesses to provide the limited eco-friendly rewards on offer through this campaign. To do this we will be using the production calculator ALBERT which is supported by BAFTA to keep track of our environmental impact during production.