ALT J "PLEADER"

INFECTIOUS MUSIC UK
CampaignUK Interview | Shots Interview | Promo News

UKVMA'S Best Alternative Video, Winner; Editing, Colour Grading, Nominated.
CANNES LIONS, Best Music Video, Shortlist. Cinematography, Bronze.
SHOTS AWARDS Music Video of the Year, Nominated
LA FILM FESTIVAL & Film Independent festival, Offical Selection
CICLOPE AWARDS Editing, Gold ; Cinematography, Gold ; Low Budget, Silver
KINSALE SHARK AWARDS Winner (Gold) Direction, Cinematography, Production Design, Post Production, and Colour Grading
CAMERIMAGE Best Music Video and Best Cinematography, Nominated
CREATIVE CIRCLE Best Music Promo Film, Winner. Best achievement in Music Video, Winner; Production, Winner. Best Music Video Cinematography, Gold; Visual Effects, Silver; Best Editing, Bronze.
SHINEY AWARDS Best recently signed director
NY FESTIVAL Cinematography, 2nd Prize
BERLIN MUSIC FESTIVAL, Best Director, Nominated


SELECTED PRESS: David Review's | Paste Magazine | NPR

Set in a Welsh mining village amidst the backdrop of impending doom, PLEADER is the story of a community whom, in their supernatural wisdom, believes the birth of a child could save their valley from destruction. And while the child, blessed with a magnetic force, can not stop the machines of destruction, his survival preserves the institutional memory of the land.

The film has many inspirations, as does the song, which grew from the novel, How Green Was My Valley and the photos of Bruce Davidson. I researched those thoroughly and also brought in elements from Tarkovsky’s The Sacrifice, and the Window Water Baby Moving by Stan Brakhage (who’s estate honored us by letting us use footage from his seminal birth film).

And after a few years not making music videos, this marks by far my most ambitious effort, testing the limits of the format itself. It was profoundly supported by the Biscuit teams, as we shot over three days in Wales (where light seemed to stay golden forever). And along the way, there was an outpouring of UK love for the song and band, which found amazing cast and crew to help bring it to life.

The film stars Sophie Cookson (who’s performance continues to move me) along with Morgan Watkins, Anton Saunders, and Ewan Hipperson. In fact, Ewan was so perfect we agreed to digitally remove his braces in order to have him in the film. Thankfully, our digital partners, Time Based Arts London, were completely on board. And while braces were an afterthought, the heart of their efforts went into creating the potent and tragic destruction sequence as the centerpiece of the film. This was developed through merging volcanic Pyroclastic Flow with 3d effects, Digital buildings to destroy, and a number of matte paintings including the exterior of the schoolhouse. The Irish boxer/cinematographer John Lynch lensed the film with a tremendous discipline and Marie Lanna brought her amazing voice to the story through her production design. Mr. Gammon designed wardrobe and Stuart Reeves edited the film, Jon Clarke executed the sound design and the song was actually re-orchistrated for the opening via my longtime collaborator Luke Lynch.

When starting into the journey, the band sent me one line to describe the video they wanted — an elegiac supernatural love story that ends in a tidal wave of earth hurtling toward the village. I wanted to give them this film, but to bring in the transcendent feeling I experience while listening to the song, we put the tidal wave in the middle and ended it with the Childs return.

ALT J "PLEADER" Teaser






Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks UK
Executive Producer: Rupert Reynolds-MacLean
Producer: Sonya Sier
Director: Isaiah Seret
Story: Joe Newman & Isaiah Seret
Director of Photography: John Lynch
Production Designer: Marie Lanna 
Costume Designer: Mr Gammon
Hair & Make Up Designer: Freddie Stopler
Casting Director: Kharmel Cochrane
Production Manager: Rebecca Mason
Production Coordinator: Jana Nouskova 
Production Coordinator: Elena Argiros
Production Assistant: Gabija Lauce
Executive Logistic Manager: Nick Sier 
1st Assistant Director: Louis Barron
1st / 2nd Assistant Director: Tom Allan
Runner/2nd: Yasmin Seddon
Runner: Daniel Linnik-Zhuravliov
Runner/Driver: Tereza Dvorak
Runner/Driver: Munzir Quraishy 
Focus Puller: Rupert Hornstein
2nd Assistant Camera: Kitt Sullivan 
Steadicam: Leo Bund
Stills Photographer: Jake Dypka
DIT: Mike McDuffie 
Grip: Benjamin Thomas
Gaffer: Romaine Foster
Electrician: Josh Wood
Set Dresser: Andrius Vystartas 
Set Dresser: Jessica Morris
Art Department Assistant: Emma Chitty
Stand-by Props: Tom Major
Art Dept Assistant: Ellie Koszak
Action Vehicle Driver: Mr Weedon 
Costume Designer Assistant: Chloe Adele
Costume Designer Assistant: Bridget Phelan 
Hair Make Up Assistant: Heather Pitchford 
Hair Make Up Assistant: Ellie Lewis 
Casting Assistant: Heather Basten
Casting Assistant: Ariane Mason
Locations Assistant: Heather O'Neil
Locations Assistant: Zoe & Michael Tootell
Researcher: Joel Maslin
Choir master: Caroline Venter
Cardiff Council: Emma Coulthard
 
Cast:
Sophie Cookson – Bronwyn
Morgan Watkins – Andre
Anton Saunders – Hew (Andre’s brother)
Oliver Dimech – Younger Llewelyn
Harry Tayler – Younger Llewelyn 
Ewan Hipperson – Older Llewelyn
Nick Sier – Miner
Robert Liddiard – Miner
Chris Morgan – Miner
Saskia Vaigncourt – Miners wife
Liza Ludbrook – Miners wife
Penelope Wildgoose – Miners wife
Sanna Kelly - Nun
Amy Evans – Nun 2 
Basil Massy – Choir master
Arron Shire – Choir children
Elmari Venter – Choir children
Honor Hopkin – Choir children
Mathys Venter – Choir children
Owen Keegan – Choir children
Rayne Turner – Choir children
Rubyn Dimond – Choir children
Seren Wallington – Choir children
Tegan Wallington – Choir children
Tomos Boffy – Choir children
Harvey Sullivan – School bully
Rico Seddon-Davidson – School boy
Levi Seddon-Davidson School boy
Luca Jordan – School boy
Oscar Rudolph – School boy
Will Rudolph – School boy
 
Edit company:  Work Post LA
Editor: Stewart Reeves
Edit Producer: Marguerite Olivelle 
Music Edit - Parallax
Music editors - Luke Lynch & Paul Rogers
Post Production: Time Based Arts
Tom Johnson - Executive Producer
Sheldon Gardner - VFX Supervisor
Simone Grattarola - Colourist
Ben Stonehouse - Flame
Bernardo Varela - Nuke Lead
Ralph Brisco - Nuke
Lisa Ayla - Matte Painting
Mike Battcock - CG
Ben Cantor – CG
Federico Guzzardo – CG

Sound mix - Factory Studios
Sound Design & mix – Jon Clarke
Audio Producer – Lou Allen
 
Label: Infectious Music UK
Manager: Stephen Tavener 
Manager: Chelsea London
Marketing Manager: Jo Power 
Commissioner - Andrew Law
 
Birth imagery excerpted from Stan Brakhage, Window Water Baby Moving (1959, 16 mm, colour, silent, 12:11)
Volcano stock footage by James Reynolds – Earth Uncut TV 

Special thank you: Joe Newman, Gus Unger-Hamilton, Thom Green, Shawn Lacy, Noam Murro, Chloe Page, Bradford Young, Isabelle & Jon Albuquerque, Jessica Seret, James Allen, Mike Skrgatic, Joshua Skurla, Lisette Nice, Hanna Bayatti, Samantha Chitty, Jeff & Deane @ Brownian Motion Pinewood, Craig & Hildegarde @ Prolight, Get Set Hire, Blaenavon Ironworks Staff, Sylvia & Team @ St Fagans Museum, South Wales Caving Club


 

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