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Volume 1, Issue 4

Autumn 2010

The Runner T

WEBSITE OF THE MONTH:

Jobs, training, news, blogs, advice and networking for everyone in the world in film and television

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Club News

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Featured Production

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Industry News

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Runners’ Relays

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Welcome to the Autumn 2010 issue of The Runner - the definitive newsletter for anyone starting out in the Film, Television and Entertainment Industry. As the dark nights roll in and the woolies come out we have the perfect antidote to those winter blues. Our Featured Production this issue is the Caribbean short taking the festivals by storm, Coolie Pink & Green. Green We’ll be hearing from the people behind the ‘little film that could’ all the way from the sun-kissed shores of Trinidad. Don’t miss the special offers available in Club News - and for those of you that missed the last showreel promotion

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extraordinaire Drystan Brod, Brod who’ll be talking about the highs and lows of the Industry as well as joys of crew accommodation.

Read about Coolie Pink & Green in our Featured Production

you’ll be pleased to see that we are repeating the offer. But be quick. Just like last time, this offer is only open to the first ten runners to contact us.

Last but not least , keep up to date with Industry News and be sure to check out our Listings page where your next job could be waiting. You’ll also find workshops and training opportunities here so there are plenty of opportunities to improve your CV. So, here’s to a peaceful end to the year and wishing you all take 2011 by storm.

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Skillset, Skillset the Sector Skills Council for Creative Media, Media wants to find out more about your skill needs.

helping to shape future funding for training in the film industry is invaluable and greatly appreciated.

If you want to benefit from funded training in the future then Skillset need to know about it now. Your time in

All information submitted is completely anonymous and used only for the purpose of compiling aggregate statistics.

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Please take a few minutes to complete the survey at www.skillsetworkforcesurvey.c om before Friday 3rd December 2010


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C l u b Got an idea for a production but haven’t got a crew? Let us know and we can help you put it together. From preproduction to post-production and everything in between, we can take you through the process every step of the way.

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Following the success of our last showreel offer, The Runners’ Club is pleased to repeat its special members’ only discount. The next 10 runners to contact us will have their showreels professionally put together for the reduced rate of £100.

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3 x brand new unused professional lighting stands good for Red Heads or under. 15.00 each or 40.00 for three plus p + p Please contact The Runners’ Club for enquiries or to place an ad here.

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Alex Kennedy, Kennedy booking agent at The Runners’ Club, Club gives her top tips on how to be first in line for jobs and becoming an A List Runner.

Make your mobile phone your best friend.

Respond quickly to job alerts - getting in touch with us even if you do not want the job. job This can be done by phone, text, or e-mail, so there is no excuse for not letting us know.

Keep your diary up to date - so we know when you’re available.

Punctuality is everything! There’s never an excuse to be late.

Look out for training opportunities and workshops - check out our noticeboard on The Runners’ Club website and join our Facebook group for regular alerts.

T h a n k In the Summer, The Runners’ Club supplied runners to the Vision Charity Soho Fun Run. Jemma Bailey, the events coordinator, expresses her thanks in an open letter... “Just wanted to say thank you for your support at the Soho Fun Run. The event

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wouldn’t have happened without this support and we at Vision are very grateful. The Soho Fun Run isn’t a huge fundraiser as the costs are very high, We did, however, double our income from last year and raised in the region of 4K to help change

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the lives of blind and visually impaired children. Thanks once again for helping to make the event such a success.” For more information on Vision’s work please go to www.visioncharity.co.uk

Rahim takes one for the team...


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In the Frame this month is Drystan Brod. Brod Drystan began his career as stage crew in the music industry and has travelled the world working on tours with the likes of Elton John and Robbie Williams. Williams He’s seen more than his fair share of bands and once nearly decapitated Philip Schofield. He has also, he says, “stayed in enough hotels to know that the next one will also be shit.”

Job Description: Rigger

Age: 36

Place of Birth: Birmingham, UK

Q. Where are you, what are you doing and are you enjoying it? A. On my boat, waiting for travel details for a job in France this weekend and you bet I am! Q. How did you get started in the Industry? A. Working for beer and food in the students’ union at university. This proved to be much more fun than studying and I soon dropped out. Q. Did you have any relevant training? A. Some of the stuff I learnt at school has proved pretty handy. Particularly reading, writing, maths, physics and electronics. Q. What was your first big break? A. Three days into my first job after moving to London I rang a friend to tell her how it was going. I left the message ‘ Wembley Stadium. Ner-ne-ner-ne-ner-ner!’ Q. What was the best piece of advice you were given when starting out? A. Always bend your knees when lifting something heavy. Q. What’s the strangest job you’ve ever had? A. Building a temporary aircraft hanger at Setif Airport, Algeria. Q. What’s the high point of your career to date? A. +85m. Khalifa Stadium, Doha. Q. What’s the low point of your career to date? A. –28m. Aldwych Tube Station, London. Q. What would you look for if you were hiring a runner? A. The ability to tell jokes after two days without sleep and a secret stash of earl grey teabags. Q. What advice would you give to anyone starting out in the Industry? A. Always bend your knees when lifting something heavy.


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In the tradition of the Ramayana and Bhagavad Gita, Gita Coolie Pink and Green is in the form of poetry and prose, using a narrative sequence of call and response between a young girl who is simultaneously learning and experiencing the beauty of her culture in the rituals and practices of Hinduism (Narrator 1) and an elder in her community (Narrator 2), who attempts to hold her fast in a traditional mould. She is sympathetic to his views but she already lives in a culture that has mixed and exchanged many components. She must celebrate both. She has no choice. ‘Exchange is like oxygen to culture’

The Asian aesthetic in the Caribbean is an unacknowledged and well kept secret. It has not infused itself into the geographical or cultural space as another kind of beauty or art-making that has transformed what we consider to be ‘Caribbean’. It is still the ‘other’. This film attempts to transform this perception by projecting a new way of celebrating the form, patterns, beauty and meaning of this aesthetic as rendered primarily through the religious ritual of Hinduism and the organic communication that this group has with the landscape of Trinidad.

Winner of the People’s Choice Award for Best Short Film at the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, Festival Coolie Pink and Green was chosen to open the First Pravasi Film Festival in New Delhi. Boasting an impressive crew including cinematographer Franklyn St. Juste (The Harder They Come), this is the latest in a series of short films capturing the aesthetic of different elements of the region’s signature, such as rastafari or vodou iconography - a beautiful and haunting rendition of the universal tale of the children of migrants and the place they call home.


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‘My experience of India and Bollywood, like many people, has been through books and film. This film is my riff on Bollywood, the mixture of music and dance sequences with the narration of poetry emulating the sequences that one often finds in the old style Bollywood classics. The Asian aesthetic in my view had remained outside of the parameters of what constituted a Caribbean sensibility and I wanted to make a film that brought this into relief. I used my research from my PhD, ‘Gender Negotiations among Indians in Trinidad 1917-1947’, to be able to quickly summarize the story of migration from India and settlement in Trinidad in a few verses. I used my own life story and challenges of many young women and men around me to create the tension of what the young girl experiences as her challenges in life. Culture must change and undergo change, but there is always a resistance to this from the old, with reason. I wanted to be sympathetic to both age groups and to both sexes. The public reception of the film has been superb and amazing. It hit the right note and achieves and continues to achieve what I wanted of this film - to confront a word that is a pejorative one for Indians in Trinidad i.e. the word ‘coolie’ which is akin in some ways to the word ‘nigger’ in other cultures. People were very impressed with the sheer beauty of the film and since I wanted to make a film that expressed the inner beauty of a culture that others could not see because many are either outside of it, or see the practices as pagan or ‘ethnic’ – the latter a word I have little time for by the way since everyone one has an ethnicity – I felt that it achieved this in a way in which films do. No one actually changes their opinion overnight but it becomes a reference point by which the issue gets taken up again and again in polite circles when before it would not have been possible to introduce such topics. Secondly, I think a lot of Indians in particular celebrated the beautiful portrayal of their rituals on screen and the beauty of their clothes, jewellery, customs and, of course, women. Working on this film in particular gave me a new take on the making of a film, before I had culled together material and created an eclectic mix on screen – primarily because I was dealing with documentary and the uncovering of an argument or narrative that had to do with some phenomenon. This film in a sense was the baptism for another kind of filmmaking, one in which I actually saw the screen as a big canvas on which I wanted to paint through the media of film. I have benefited tremendously in coming to a perspective on film through my husband Rex Dixon who is a British painter who lives in Trinidad with me. As an abstract expressionist painter, I have found his method of work interesting and very similar in many ways to my own ways of writing, thinking, the skills that are required as well as the accidents of discovery that shape the art that one is producing. The natural sense of colour and form, movement and gesture, the capacity to place objects against each other and frame against frame are all learnt subliminally - they cannot be taught. All this I think I picked up from watching him work and from his paintings that have surrounded me for nearly two decades. Perhaps it is there in all filmmakers, but it’s a pleasant discovery in my own style to date.’


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‘The project fell directly into my area of research - the East Indian aesthetic in Trinidad. I'm doing it from a music angle, looking at language changes in songs, the changes in musical forms and so forth. I don't think anyone has dealt with this East Indian aesthetic in film before. A lot of the work has been located in academic theorizing on identity, nationality, ‘Indianness’ etc… but this angle of film and sound was particularly interesting. The style of the script with the experimentation with poetry and prose interchange was unique - though I think that aspect was more appreciated in India than here. Most people in Trinidad focussed on the music! When I first read the script, I started putting music to it based on my knowledge of ragas - which is what North Indian Classical music is based on. Ragas can be likened to modes. They are like scales with notes arranged in particular ways to create a particular mood, to suit a specific time of day and season. After a couple days it suddenly hit me that this wasn't an Indian classical production. This was Trinidad and this was supposed to depict a Trinidadian feel. If I had used the original classical pieces, what I'd be doing - as most of the documentaries depicting Indian culture in the Caribbean do - was imposing an elite idea of music on to something that was Trinidadian when Indo-Trinidadian music has more folk elements. There were shades of ragas in them so it was safe to use the ragas but render them in a folk idiom and in the melodic structures that Indo-Trinidadians would immediately recognize. The film was about the East Indian aesthetic so the music would have had to relate to that. The resulting music was therefore a result of this thinking. The time I spent away from music - being disillusioned by the strict classical style and then leaving to live in London for a year - put my music into perspective for me. Because I had spent a part of my life in India, spoke Hindi and had been trained in North Indian classical music, I felt myself to be Indian when in fact I wasn't. The time away from family and life here in Trinidad changed my vision of myself - and by extension music - over the years. So although I had started composing the music for Coolie Pink, naturally drawing on the music that I knew and which was a part of me, I was able to make the mental shift by thinking about the identity issues of the script. I don't think that mental shift would have been possible if I hadn't made that shift in my own identity earlier. Most people in Trinidad who have seen the film have liked it. I found it amusing that here in Trinidad, Indian culture is "exoticised" - as Prof. would say - while in India she and her film were considered quite exotic at the Pravasi Film Festival in Delhi! The number of interviews she did almost on a daily basis was enough evidence. So on that note, I'd say the film was well received by most people. The whole experience was enjoyable and very illuminating. We had a great team that eventually became sort of like a family. Actually I wish that it never had to end. I now think differently about music, film and academic work and I'm hoping that Prof. does the feature film and hires me to do the music!’


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‘The name attracted to me to the project. Come on - "Coolie Pink and Green"? I immediately laughed. I thought it was a great title and the poetry had a lot of potential to tell a story. That’s what it’s all about. I had previously edited a film called Becoming Elsa with the director Patricia Mohammed. We realized we had a creative chemistry together and since then have been involved directly and indirectly with each other’s work. I was Co-Producer, Editor and Guest Actor on Coolie Pink and Green and my role as editor was definitely challenging. I was given the task of editing this experimental film, where if it wasn't put together properly it would have been disastrous. The pacing had to be exactly right or the film wouldn't connect with the audience. I had to really dig deep creatively. Five of us went to India to premiere the film at the opening night of the Pravasi Film Festival, where a lot of people didn't even know there were people of Indian descent in Trinidad. I truly enjoyed that trip. We were in Delhi for about nine days and got to experience a small amount of how their media industry handles film festivals. There were photographers and TV cameras everywhere. Because I had a small cameo in the film people would recognize me and come to talk to me. It was all great fun. We met a lot of big filmmakers like Deepa Mehta and Mira Nair. For the entire trip my senses were heightened in India, everything seemed interesting; the culture is just so rich. I would love to go back and explore India some more. Coolie Pink and Green was a huge learning experience. It was the third film I edited and it was an opportunity for me to prove my worth in the film industry. The film itself was a risk and we all went for it and it worked out. Patricia Mohammed would take into consideration creative advice openly on set from crew, making the process of filmmaking a family experience. Everyone got involved. We had lots of fun and the entire team became a family. I still speak to everyone who was on the shoot. The film has opened up doors for me to work on other films and move into production on my own short, “The Cool Boys”, which I will be directing. It is a look into what being a youth in Trinidad and Tobago is like and how trouble can find you. I am also working on another project as Co-Director and Editor. The film is called Seventeen Colours and a Sitar and is an experimental documentary about the painter Rex Dixon and the musician Mungal Patasar. We are doing some exciting work on this documentary to really bring to life the importance of what these artists do. Patricia Mohammed is also the Director on this film. The public in Trinidad is proud of Coolie Pink and Green. They see things are beginning to happen in the industry. The films aren't copies of Hollywood films but an attempt to create a Trinidadian style of film making. The film has achieved far more than expected. It is the little film that could. Who would have thought such a small film would make such big waves? It is truly a beautiful film.’

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Walt Disney Studios’ and Jerry Bruckheimer Films’ Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is partially filming at Pinewood Studios along with other UK locations. Since cameras turned in June, the production has already shot on the islands of Kauai and Oahu in Hawaii, and Los Angeles.

Acclaimed Director Mike Leigh has become the first patron of the nine-year-old Cornwall Film Festival.

Andrew M. Smith, Group Director Corporate Affairs for the Pinewood Studios Group commented: “We are thrilled that Pirates of the Caribbean has chosen to film part of the latest instalment in this fantastic series here at Pinewood. It’s great for the UK film industry and for Pinewood Studios in particular. We are looking forward to welcoming the entire cast and crew.”

Leigh said: “My late, great producer and dear friend Simon Channing Williams was very closely involved with the Cornwall Film Festival and so it’s with great pleasure that I follow him in having the honour of becoming a patron.”

The film follows Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Johnny Depp) Depp and Barbossa (Geoffrey Geoffrey Rush) Rush as they embark on a quest to find the Fountain of Youth. It also stars Ian n McShane and Penelope Cruz.

At the 2004 festival, Leigh himself presented his award-winning film Vera Drake, followed by a standing room only Q & A.

It is scheduled for release in 2011

Festival director Donna Anton told Devon and Cornwall Film: “We are thrilled to have Mike Leigh as our first patron. “His body of work is a testament to the best on British Film making, which we hope will reflect well on our efforts here in Cornwall.” Leigh’s latest film, Another Year, which competed for the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Festival in May, will have its Cornwall premiere during this year’s festival in Falmouth in November.

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After its success in the South, BAFTA and Media Trust are bringing their youth mentoring programme to Scotland. Established two years ago, the scheme gives youth project leaders access to media professionals in the Film, TV and Media sector. The scheme is open to media and filmmaking projects targeted at disadvantaged youths ages 13-25. Find out more about the scheme at www.bafta.org or contact Louise at louiset@mediatrust.org


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In Love with Alma Cogan - Capriol Films. Location Norfolk, UK. Shooting starts November 2010 Citadel - Blinder Films. Location Glasgow, Scotland. Shooting starts November 2010 Deep Blue Sea - Camberwell Productions. Location UK. Shooting starts November 2010 Iron Lady - Pathe-BBC-DJ Films. Location UK. Shooting starts November 2010 Tribe - Argy Films. Location Dorset, UK. Shooting starts November 2010 Borrowed Time - Parkville Pictures. Location UK. Shooting starts late 2010 Grabbers - Forward Films. Location UK/Ireland. Shooting starts late 2010 Alien ‘Prequel’ - Scott Free Films. Location UK. Shooting starts January 2011 360 - Revolution Films. Location UK. Shooting starts January 2011 Gravity - Heyday Films. Location UK. Shooting start February 2011

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14 October to 13 November - Glasgay @ various locations Glasgow, Scotland 1 to 30 November - Homotopia @ Various locations, Liverpool 3 to 7 November - Doc Fest @ various locations, Sheffield, South Yorkshire 7 November - Flashforward Film Festival @ Vue Cinema, Oxford 11 Nov to 4 December - French Film Festival @ Various locations across England & Scotland 11 to 14 November - Neon Digital Arts @ The Centre for Excellence, Dundee, Scotland 14 to 21 November - London Jazz Festival @ Southbank Centre QEH, London 26 Nov to 3 December - London African Film Festival @ Various Locations, London 4 to 5 December - Dickensian Christmas @ Rochester, Kent 30 December to 2 January - Edinburgh’s Hogmanay @ various locations, Edinburgh, Scotland

The Maids at Glasgay!

T R A I N I N G / W O R K S H O P S

4 November - Sell! Sell! Sell! @ Arts & Business venue TBC, Maidstone, Kent 6 November - Producing: The Business of Film @ the London Film Academy, London 7 November - Extreme Scriptwriting Workshop @ Euroscript, Birbeck, University of London 13 to 14 November - An Introduction to SelfSelf-Shooting @ FD4W with the Jerwood Space, London 23 November - Fundraising Using Social Media @ Pegasus Theatre, Oxford 23 November - RED DIT for Camera Assistants & Operators @ VMI, London 10 December - Vision & Media Career Doctor @ Vision & Media, Salford, Manchester 26 January to 30 March (Wed eves) - First Steps in Script Writing, Writing RSAMD, Glasgow, Scotland

Esperanza Spalding at the London Jazz Festival

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The Runners’ Club New Forest Studios 43 The Street Charlwood Horley Surrey RH6 0BY

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In 1910 • • • • •

Phone: 01293 862 949 Mob: 0700 699 1969 E-mail: info@therunnersclub.co.uk

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‘the dedicated agency for runners and the people who need them’

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A man jumps into the Hudson from a burning balloon - the first movie stunt! Frankenstein makes his film debut in Edison’s Frankenstein Max Factor creates the first make-up for film William Foster launches Foster Photoplay, the first African American Film Production Co. Thomas Edison introduces the Kinetophone, integral to the talking film. Demark releases the first film about prostitution, The White Slave Trade Leon Gaumont demonstrates synchronised sound with the Chronophone at the Gaumont Palace in Paris

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Jessica GodlontonGodlonton-Shaw is a 24-year-old runner from London who aspires to be a producer. Jessica has been working in film and television for five years and her jobs have ranged from casting director to production assistant. Jessica tells The Runner about her experiences working as a runner with Talkback Thames on The Bill.

“My primary duty was to provide the cast and crew with tea and coffee on location as we were shooting in a public mall. I was also involved in coordinating the extras on set. I enjoyed it very much. The atmosphere was light and exciting and the people were amazing. All the cast and crew were really easy going and willing to answer any questions I asked. From start to finish it was nice being on a recognised television program (bragging rights!) though I would have like to be more useful and involved and would have stayed for the day even though they didn't need me. I could have improved on my general knowledge about the actors in the programme and realised there is so much more to learn – as a runner you must be pre-prepared for everything. It was a very beneficial experience and I would absolutely love to do it again...and again...and again…”


The Runner Autumn 2010