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Film Crew Transforms Historic Church into Tough Crowd Film
Lucy Jordon made enquiries about making a film in St Clements church the permission was given and on bright blustery day filming began below is an accout of the day from Gerry Hughes who is the leader of the church team.
The film maker, Lucy Jordon, wanted to start early on Saturday 26th August so I opened the church at 0545hrs, the company, called the Tough Crowd started to arrive at 0605hrs. Very quickly a marque was erected with a section for make up, costumes, and shelter, a steady procession of people removed all the spare furnishings from the church to make up the film set. One of the things that surprised me was the enthusiasm for the project, they were all volunteers. Every one was so professional, as it was a lovely day the cameras were set up out side on the path, they had to film in the car park and inside the church, rails were set up inside the church, the lighting crew lit up the set inside, we had flowers, a coffin and the church set was done using all the old church chairs, they looked much better than the newer chairs, the set looked really good.When filming started I watched the rehearsals and was most impressed by the script writer and producer Lucy Jordon, a real bundle of energy and confidence, all of the crew and the actors were so friendly, when the day started I was asked what I wanted for breakfast, lunch and dinner.Ira Gill came to take over from me at 1300hrs, and they wrapped up finally at about 1900hrs.
They left the church as they found it very clean and tidy. I have watched some of the film and the bits that I saw were very good and funny, Lucy has promised to send me a DVD for us to use in the church (while we are waiting for visitors on our open days,
The maquee still upright Thirsty work this filming
St Clements on cue
Local Filmmaker Lucy. C Jordan explains what the film is about.
The film, titled Tough Crowd, follows the story of Felix Follitt, a funeral comedian trying to survive his first gig. The quirky script, having been rejected by other local churches, was embraced by Gerry and the committee at St. Clements, who saw the films potential and welcomed it with open arms. Having spent over two years working in the industry on projects like The Halcyon and Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, Lucy (the film's Writer-Director) pulled in as many favours as possible, managing to secure an incredible crew of 27 that included, Director of Photography, Toby Moore (Da Vinci's Demons, Call The Midwife), Sound Recordist, Stephen Phillips (Saving Grace, Silent Witness) and Gaffer, Harlon Haveland (Rogue One, Wonder Woman).
A brainwave, a self-tape and a script rewrite allowed the perfect casting of Annie-Lees Jones (pictured below)
into the role of Felix Follit, originally having been written as male.The film's features another seven characters,
which were cast at various points during pre-production and included local actors, previous collaborators and recommendations from other professionals.
Being an already strikingly beautiful church, St. Clement's required little dressing to look good through the lens of the Arri Alexa Mini camera used to shoot the film. With beautiful sunshine for all 12 hours of the day, the atmosphere on set was filled with enthusiasm (possibly thanks to a rather special lunch courtesy of Wagamamas, Five Guys, Tortilla and GBK) and also, laughter…especially when a 20ft marquee flipped upside-down in the wind!
Lucy has been overwhelmed by the support and response for the film already, considering the film's odd subject matter: I never imagined my weird little story would resonate with this many people and I was so surprised by how much everyone got behind the idea and hope it continues!
Tough Crowd is now in post-production; the footage will be edited and cut together, the sound mixed and soundtrack added and then it will be packaged for release. Lucy and the film's Producers - Simon Haveland, Jamie Benyon and Mac Montero - are aiming to complete by Christmas 2017 with the aim of submitting to film festivals worldwide in 2018 and eventually uploading online for everyone to see.
More Pictures from the day
If you'd like to watch what happens with the project, search Facebook for Tough Crowd Film or find the film on Twitter/Instagram using @ToughCrowdFilm
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The maquee still upright
Thirsty work this filming
St Clements on cue