Block 1

With our new days in the 2nd week of January, our original cast, and a (slightly) rejigged crew, we were ready to go.

We'd had our last couple of rehearsal days and in fact, the delay and the location change had given us longer to finesse the script.

As I mentioned a while ago we would never stop rewriting this thing - slicing lines out during the blocking, tweaking actions to fit the locations, putting in references to stuff we shot first but would appear later in the film - and these six weeks let us really get deeper into the characters, fleshing them out further into three-dimensional human beings.

Then, as per usual, something hits you sideways:

Our kit hire company went under.

Now this was a killer deal that we'd managed to pull together to shoot for a week for as little money as possible. The chances of working out something similar at this short notice were slim to none.

But you don't get far in the film industry by making enemies, so we called round everyone we knew.

And as luck would have it, Art War Entertainment had what we needed. They were small (not now - they're doing grand) and they agreed to match the original deal! Lifesavers.

We had our kit booked and paid for, with two days to spare.

We were in the location from the Saturday, with our incredible Production Designer Keith Slote working his magic to make quite a nice looking place as grim as possible, keeping it just this side of crack den.

James and I were going to sleep at the location - both to protect the kit, and to conserve energy.

Of course, being in a condemned estate brings its own pleasures, namely no hot water. So each evening we'd sleep top-and-tail on a blow-up mattress (which would collapse by the early hours), and each morning we'd take a 'shower' in a freezing cold flat, on a boarded-up sink estate, using a kettle and a dishcloth.

Nothing like suffering for your art, I suppose.


For the next few posts I'm handing over to our ever-reliable line-producer Mike Flack, for hopefully fairly obvious reasons...


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