Like a Virgin

Clare Kerrison as Hera
Clare Kerrison as Hera

I recently uploaded my second short film competition entry (which happens to be my 5th short film ever). Festival of ‘Bruce’ is now live on the Virgin Media Shorts site and available for your viewing pleasure by clicking on the title. It’s only 2 minutes 20 seconds long. Go ahead. Try it!

The whole thing was inspired by Clowns cafe in Cambridge.  The proprietress looks just like the Goddess Hera – or what I think the Goddess Hera should look like – and every time I go there I end up staring at her and making up a story in my head about how she is Hera and she’s running a cafe here in Britain because nobody worships the Greek Gods anymore and even an immortal’s gotta eat. And she’s not alone, either – it’s a family run business and the whole crew look like they just stepped straight off Mt Olympus – really my imagination just goes crazy.

Robert Jezek as Zeus with nymphs
Robert Jezek as Zeus with nymphs!

There are about a million ways I’d like to play with this idea, because I’ve always had a thing for the Greek myths. Plus it hasn’t escaped my attention that my friend and colleague Robert Jezek looks totally Zeus-like in a beard. And just imagine how much fun could be had at the casting session for Apollo!

Enter the VMShorts competition. This is the big one for film shorts in the UK. The 12 finalists have their shorts shown in UK cinemas for a year and the winner gets £30,000 toward their next project, either of which would be AMAZING.  Not that I think a beginner like me will win. But when putting in the effort it takes to make a film, it’s nice to have a big golden glittery prize available at the end of the rainbow even if you know REALLY that you’re probably not, well almost certainly not, well you never know but it’s very unlikely that you’re ever going to get it.

So it was all very last minute but I came up with a story about a modern day Zeus and Hera in their provincial British garden preparing to celebrate Zeus’s feast day (actually September 13th) but, as has been the case for them for the past 1000 years at least, no worshippers have turned up. Apart from their annoying neighbour Richard.

The Lovely Nymphs
The Lovely Nymphs, Kay Morland and Elizabeth Muncey, makeup and hair by Tyfene Vally.

Having pruned said story to the requisite 2.5 pages, I managed to pull together an amazing team and – with huge hand-holding help from DOP and co-producer Kate Madison and AD Emily Blickem – to make the film. And I’m really proud of it. It’s subtly funny and I think I found the perfect actors in Clare Kerrison for Hera and Robert Jezek for Zeus and it has disappearing nymphs so how could it fail to be cool and finally it channels Bewitched which is completely appropriate in every way. It makes me smile every time I watch it. Hope you like it too…

You can review the film on IMDb, or like it on Facebook, if you’re so inclined. Honest feedback always appreciated.

PS: You can see other short films I’ve had a hand in by going to the Short Films page of this blog and clicking on the youtube links…

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