How far would desperation take you?

A farmer turns to trafficking immigrants in order to avoid bankruptcy but plans quickly worsen when deaths occur and Henry is left wondering if he made the right decision.

Synopsis

In this short film, both the farmer and the immigrants are caught up in a web of desperation – the farmer turns to trafficking migrants to avoid bankruptcy and the migrants are desperate for a better life overseas. This situation goes from bad to worse following a death on site, and the farmer is left wondering if he made the right decision.

Inspiration

Desperate times lead to desperate measures, and having heard regular stories in the press about human trafficking, we decided to incorporate the issue into a short film. Portsmouth’s south coast is one of the key entry points for undocumented immigrants, and this inspired us to tell a story on how a farmer could get involved in such business.

Inspired by Real Issues

This short film aims to create an awareness of the issues of human trafficking and small business, and how they could be linked to the emotion and motivation of desperation. Farmers are perceived as wealthy land owners, yet this is often far from the case and many small farmers are facing pressures and uncertainties from supermarket profits and recent trade deals. We were inspired by the tales of people willing to risk their lives, liberty and life savings to escape their conditions. Yet the grass is not always greener as others are also desperate to improve their own lives, and are prepared to compromise all that they know is right to do so.

Presspack

A long and Rewarding Journey

We started hearing about local human trafficking in the news back in June 2017, and we noted down ideas and other references and confirmed the idea in July. A few weeks in August were spent researching and developing our ideas, with constant redrafts. Much of the next couple months were spent on recces and contacting actors. In November, we finalised actors, storyboards and documents before shooting. With a large cast but small crew, we followed our plans to the minute and wrapped up successfully each day. The edit for this short film took a lot longer than expected, but we’re very pleased with the result! Read our blog to find out more about our journey!

Blog Post

10
Drafts
16
Actors
5
Locations
470
Takes

Are you sitting comfortably?

Despair is a short film drama about a farmer that turns to trafficking immigrants in order to avoid bankruptcy, but plans quickly worsen when deaths occur and Henry is left wondering if he made the right decision.
Filmed in November 2017, this is short film drama that explores and develops the theme of desperation of those involved in human trafficking and small farm business. Subscribe to our channel and check out our Blog to find out more about our journey with this project and others!

Meet the stars.

Our great lead actors are what really bring our stories to life. Here’s a little on what they’re known for, what they’re into and the different roles they play in our short film.
Jonathan Abbott in Despair

Jonathan Abbott

Henry

Jonathan Abbott received his first role in 2014 and has since gained considerable experience in Theatre, TV, Film and Radio. Trained as a solicitor, Jonathan has over ten years of experience in martial arts and a license to drive motorbikes and lorries. Jonathan is best known for Chaos in the Spectrum (2018) and The Price of Love (2017).

Jonathan plays the role of Henry, a hard-working farmer who has fallen on hard times after inheriting the business from his father, and will do anything to keep it going. With red tape and supermarket pressure looming, Henry works long hours for little return. He can no longer keep up with his bills, and so looks to human trafficking for hard workers on the cheap, telling himself they will live a better life on his farm.

IMDB
Spotlight

Matthew Couchman in Despair

Matthew Couchman

Trafficker

Military and Firefighter trained, Matthew Couchman has been a professional actor since 2015, having performed lead dialogue roles for over 22 years. With experience of staged combat, he is trained with swords and firearms. Matthew is best known for his work on Adventure Inc. (2002), San Antonio (2004) and Churchill: The Hollywood Years (2004).

Matthew plays the role of a trafficker, a cold-hearted and selfish thug looking to make some quick money regardless of others. For him, humans are goods to be traded; he only cares if his goods are damaged or lost. While not completely heartless, he does not take disappointment well. He will carry out harsh actions following his chain of command from harder people above him, in order to keep his job and carry on living.

IMDB
Spotlight

Alison Nicol in Despair

Alison Nicol

Emma

Alison Nicol is a Scottish singer, musician and actor with many acclaimed reviews. Of a warm and bubbly character, Alison plays the piano, flute and bassoon and is a singer in a funk-pop functions band. She is an experienced climber, and is also a Founder and Artistic Director of Weird Sisters Theatre Company, currently touring the South East.

Alison plays the role of Emma, Henry’s wife. Emma is loyal to her husband and supportive of the business, and shares his pain when she sees Henry struggling under so much pressure. Her marriage is tested as a result of their pressing financial situation and the subsequent decisions made. She wants to help, but knows she is not much use in the fields, and so all she can do is watch and wait, for better or for worse.

IMDB
Spotlight

Why we make films.

We love making films; they’re the pinnacle of creative freedom! Filmmaking allows us the opportunity to share something beautiful and worth talking about.

Engaging

We love to tell gripping stories with real emotional connection and like to keep the audience guessing right up until the end.

Provoking

We believe content should help create an awareness for issues and provoke thought by exploring related themes through realistic character development.

Stunning

We are passionate about cinematography and love to create striking scenes that place the audience inside the world the characters live.

We’d love to work together!

Making films is not all we do; we also work with businesses! If we’ve peaked your interest then why not take a look at our services to see what we can do for you? If you’ve already got an idea, feel to to say hello!
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