Thursday, 11 February 2010

Announcing my forthcoming movie...

Yes, it's nearing completion and will be published very, very soon!
For anyone that's watched my movies, you'll know that I've started to build a reputation for gloomy, depressing, and dark material. Clockwork - my most successful flick to date - is set in an alternate history where the UK has descended into a hopelessly bleak totalitarian society. Cloud Angel is set on board an airship, and not wishing to spoil it if you haven't watched it, let's just say it doesn't end well...
I decided this had to change.
So, my new movie is set in an fallout shelter after a nuclear strike. I know what you're thinking. "It doesn't sound very cheery". Well, that's because it's not. I think it's fair to say that I've been singularly unsuccessful in my mission to deliver a happy upbeat Disneyesque family film. Still, could've been worse. It could've been a musical.
This film is something of a departure for me though. It's the first time I've set a movie in the US. The reason for not doing this before was because I like to direct my voice actors in person, and they're all British. In the same way that American actors struggle to do British accents, I assume that British actors doing American accents will sound ridiculous (to Americans at any rate. I doubt Brits would notice.) Do American actors struggle with British accents? I think so*. Any time there's a computer game with one of the levels set in the UK it's always painfully obvious that the actor isn't a native. The worst example I can think of is a Tony Hawks game that the kids have on the Wii - the "English" girl is dressed in a Union flag T-shirt and speaks with an accent that alternates between Cockney, Yorkshire, and bizarrely Australian. I don't intend this to sound in any way xenophobic - my point is simply that films set in the UK require British actors, so I assume films set in the US will require American actors.
This presented something of a problem for me as there are any number of actors available online, but I needed people that could perform without my immediate direction. I'm happy to say I got some killer performances...
With this movie I struggled with the title. The film is about a young couple holed up in the basement of their house which they've converted into a fallout shelter. They've been there for months after the country descended into nuclear war, and as they're in a remote rural location well away from any major industrial or population centres they've managed to avoid any direct blast damage. The threat now is fallout, and they wonder if it is safe to go outside.
The original title was "Embers", as I saw these two characters as being like the embers of life - and it could go one of two ways, they either fade away and die, or are rekindled into life. Then, I changed the name to "The End". I wanted to drive home the seriousness of their predicament. Now, no one has ever described my work as subtle, but even I could see that "The End" was a bit melodramatic, so "Embers" was rekindled. (Did you see what I did there...?)
Anyway, it is tantalisingly close to being released, so watch this space!

*with the obvious exception of Johnny Depp. I don't know how or why, but he can get away with it.


  1. Actually I find British actors to be very good at American accents. Christian Bale, Daniel Day-Lewis, Gary Oldman, Ewan McGregor, etc all can pull off a flawless American accent.

    Perhaps its due to the abundance of American media that it comes so naturally to them. Of course these are real actors and not just some guy on the internet trying to wing it.

  2. A post-apocalyptic musical... brilliant! (Come on, you know that's what it really is...)