True Believers

by Ian Kirkup in London, Greater London, England

We did it
On 7th April 2018 we successfully raised £1,160 with 23 supporters in 35 days

Our graduate film, True Believers, a story of paranoia, madness, radicalization and pop culture made by a group of London film students.

by Ian Kirkup in London, Greater London, England

New stretch target

Thank you so much to everyone who has donated so far. We're pretty overwhelmed by the support but we're also hugely excited to have the money to make a good film. I'm setting a stretch target because there are still 32 days left on this project and from this point on every little helps. 

Every £10 is another festival that we can submit to, every £20 is a round of pizzas at the end of a shoot day. Every £50 allows us to rent more equipment and film more scenes that we didn't think we could!

Thanks again - Ian, Brad, Kitt, Jake, Kerr and Matt

What's the story?

When a non-believer is pushed down a slippery slope towards the breaking point, is there any way back when things get this dark?

True Believers is the story of Martin Morgan, an underachieving nobody living in London. His life is flipped upside down when celebrity prophet Darius arrives in the U.K and announces that Martin will die within the fortnight. Darius has a history of being correct and has built up a huge far right religious fan base, but the rest of the world, including Martin, think he's a fraud.

Step in Martin's devout Christian fianceé Hannah, who cannot ignore the prophecy  so easily and desperately begs Martin to flee the city. Martin becomes increasingly unhinged as his relationship with Hannah breaks down and fans of Darius threaten him every night. Can he make it through the next two weeks?

The Cast

Johnny Whiting 

Johnny is an East 15 Trained Actor and University of East London graduate, with appearances in Colourhouse Theatre productions of Snow White and Rapunzel. He'll be playing our tortured lead Martin Morgan and showed he can play the fierce denial and resistance that Martin struggles with over the course of the film. He's also an all round lovely guy.  Headshot by Aslam Husain

Tess Hardy

Tess is a London-based actor, recently having completed an MA in Acting at East 15. One of her highlights of her career so far has been working on A  Midsummer Night's Dream with a cast drawn from the RSC. Other great moments have included site-specific theatre through the  Barbican and performing new writing at the Park Theatre. She has also had  opportunities to act for camera - most notably, she appeared in a short  film which won a national ITN competition. She plays the second lead in our film Hannah Baker, who desperately tries to convince her fianceé Martin to leave the city and save him from Darius's prophecy. She has a strong moral compass shaped by her faith, but struggles to get Martin to believe in her. Tess fits my original character breakdown of Hannah brilliantly and I have no doubt she'll be able to show this on screen. Headshot by Marta Pequeño

Aaron Rice

Aaron is a great guy, nothing like the sort of person who would prophesise the death of some random person they don't even know. Thats why he's playing the role of Darius, the film's mysterious antagonist who swoops into the UK and turns Martin's life on its head. He describes himself as a creative, expressive person, driven to find an outlet with a professional background in I.T but has always sought opportunities to put himself out there. Over the years, he has tried his hand at stand-up comedy (for which he was  occasionally paid), sketch comedy, improv and, latterly, radio  presenting (again, occasionally paid). He has also had opportunities,  from time to time, to act, which is something he always comes back to. He's keen to further his acting experience, learn, hone his skills, and always to create something new. Headshot by Nicholas Dawkes Photography

The Crew

Ian Kirkup - Writer and Director

I'm a  writer and director that enjoys the entire process of making a film and  telling a story. During three years at university I aimed to become a  good editor, but I've also really enjoyed getting to write and direct  three short film dramas. I love the feeling of being on set and working  with a good team. I'm hoping to tell a good, wacky, Black Mirror style story in True  Believers and make it my best film yet, but I can't do it without our  amazing crew who are doing most of the work!

Jake de la Mothe - Director of Photography

Jake  is a young and passionate creator who is always looking for new  opportunities to make his mark. Working for the last two years he's  explored explored all aspects of filmmaking, from start to finish. As  the DoP he hopes to create a visually striking piece, exploring colour  and composition.

Kitt Hytch - Editor and Sound Recordist

 Kitt  is a filmmaker that has been studying for over 5 years in film. She won  best audio visual editing City College in 2015 and was drawn to this  project after working with Ian before and his stories are already wacky  and creative and they are the best projects to work on.

Bradley Baterip - Producer

Bradley  is in charge of the production, making sure we have everything we need  when we need it. He wants to get into producing as a full time job and  has been an immense help in organising the project. He's also written  and directed three films at university including A Hard Place, The  Routine and Tag.

Kerr Matheson - 1st Assistant Director

Kerr  is our resident Scotsman and 1st AD, helping out with auditions and  providing immense amounts of moral support. He's a new student at London  South Bank University and recently directed Hidden Knees, a great 90  second comedy short. 

Matt Stepton - 1st Assistant Camera

Matt is an aspiring DoP/director and has worked on various university projects including An Eternal Love and An Autistic Romance.

Why we're making it

Martin goes from a stubborn non-believer to an isolated, broken man who believes that violence is the only way out. In writing the script, this began to feel similar to the stories of homegrown terrorists and how they became radicalised into commiting terrible attacks. But why do another story of Islamic extremists? Why not set it in our current world of terror and swap the religions and ethnicities involved and see how things might be different or just the same?

How you can help us

Your money will helps us pay for the biggest expenses of our project

  • Locations. We'll be film for 3-4 days in a house which will cost us around £75 per night
  • Food and travel. With a cast and crew of 9, plus any extras we may use, there will be shooting days where we will need to cover the costs of 10+ people surviving in London, which will be around £100 each day
  • Festival submissions. We want to give this film the best chance of success and for that we need to be able to send it to as many festivals as possible. These can be free, others can cost anywhere between £10-£50.
  • Art design. We want to build the world of the film and make it look believable, for this we need a good supply of props, costumes and makeup.

All this will help make the film the best it can be, and ensure that we are all working well, letting our creativity flow without being burdened by the worries of how much it will all cost!

Cant afford it? Please help us out by sharing this page and spreading it to as many fine folk as possible.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£5 or more

Credit and a signed thank you note from the crew

Get your name in the credits at the end of the film and also recieve a personal thank you note signed and from all of us!

£15 or more

Credit and a digital copy of the film

As a personal thank you your name will appear in the credits at the end of the film and you'll be able to watch it before its online premiere

£25 or more

Blooper reel

As well as previous rewards, you'll also get to see our blooper reel!

£50 or more

Behind the Scenes video

On top of the other rewards, you'll get to see how we made the film in an exclusive BTS video.

£75 or more

Crew commentary on the film and two BTS photos

Recieve links to our crew commentary and also exclusive BTS photos on top of all the other rewards!

£100 or more

1 of 5 claimed

Signed script and Executive Producer credit

Recieve a copy of the script in the post signed by the cast and crew, as well as get an Executive Producer credit at the end of the film on top of all other rewards!

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