Blood Shed continues to cook up a storm in the US! Our little sheddy tale of guts and gore has brought us glory the last few weeks, notching up several awards! First, we were stunned to wake up to the news that Blood Shed scooped THREE awards at the prestigious Knoxville Horror Film Fest!
We beat stiff competition to be crowned Funniest Film, and James Moran was named Best Director for a short, and we won Best Script for a short film, too. As Producer, Co-Writer and Production Designer, I’m grinning from ear to ear and thrilled that our rather unique tale has found its place on the film scene so quickly.
The awesome trophies arrived this week and are now adorning the Moranic Productions gong shelves!
The festival team kindly picked our star, Shaun Dooley, as the winner of the Best Male Lead Award. Here’s a quick peek at the trophy that is currently en route – what a hot bird! We can’t wait to unwrap this little chick.
Huge thank you to both festivals and their judges, but also to our supporters who helped get this film made and spread the word about it. It’s an honour to share it with so many like-minded shed-fanciers.
We have more screenings coming up. We’re screening at the awesome Ax Wound Film Festival in Vermont on Saturday 18th November, then we’re back in London on home turf for the Underwire Festival 2017 where we’ll be screening at the Prince Charles Cinema on Friday 24th November. Come and show your support if you can. I’m nominated for their Best Producer award and at more than 8 months pregnant, I am extra, extra emotional about this nomination!
In other news, James and I are guests on the latest edition (season 2, ep 7) of the brilliant film podcast Casting the Runes! We were chuffed to chat with the lovely Runes team and had a great time talking about Creepshow and Blood Shed. Have a listen to the episode here! We hope you find the things we say insightful as well as plain odd, weird and strange.
It’s been six months since we shot Blood Shed, and the shed has had something of a meteoric rise since its World Premiere at Horror Channel FrightFest in London just over a month ago! As co-writer, producer and production designer of this tale of 80s shed gore, I couldn’t be more proud.
We just yesterday found out that we’ve been selected by our SIXTEENTH festival! AND we’ve been nominated for an award at Sick Chick Flicks Film Festival in North Carolina!
To have sixteen festivals booked in little over a month since our World Premiere is really quite a feat, and we’re overjoyed that so many festival programmers love a story about a killer shed as much as we do! It’s all come as rather a surprise to James and I. We’ve never had a film gather such momentum so fast and only hope that the little shed that could continues to find its tribe on the festival scene and beyond! My fingers and toes are crossed daily.
Blood Shed has two festival outings this week in case you’re able to catch it on the big screen. First, the film will be screening in Pennsylvania, USA on Friday 6th October at the Indie Horror Drive-In Film Festival.
Then on Saturday 7th October, the shed is back in London to rock Wimbledon International Short Film Festivalfrom 7.30pm, where we’re nominated for the Best London Filmmaker award, and eligible for two further awards to be decided on the night!
More details on the festivals that we’ve been able to announce so far can be found on the Screenings page of the official Blood Shedwebsite, which is crammed with stuff!
We’ve also had a flurry of exceptional reviews following our premiere. Here are just a few highlights with some linky links for clicky clicks if you want to feast your eyes on the full reviews. They’re rather lovely and have certainly left us all warm and fuzzy inside.
“…indebted to the CGI-free horror of the Eighties, and in particular to George A. Romero’s Creepshow (1982)… as though this were a lost British segment of Romero’s anthology film.” SciFiNow
“A thirteen-minute slice of genius… enough gags and gore to put a smile on anyone’s face… Davies and her partner-in-cinematic-crime James Moran have a perfect handle on what makes an entertaining and memorable short.” Starburst
“Loaded with laughs and gore to satisfy in this very niche sub-genre you never knew you needed.” HorrorTalk
We’ve had such tremendous support from our Kickstarter backers and new fans who’ve discovered the film since we ran our crowdfunding campaign back in February. All digital rewards, and most of the physical perks, have been sent out for the gang to enjoy. Those waiting on swag packs that include a poster, badges and magnet – never fear – they’ll be on your doorstep in no time. They’ll be worth the wait!
We may offer some of the remaining limited edition merchandise as competition prizes at festivals or on social media, so keep your eyes peeled on the Twitter feed.
We’re deep in pre-production on our next short film, Hank: Portrait of a Serial Killer, which is due to be shot in November (depending on when my baby decides she’s ready to come out) and completed in early 2018. This one is written and directed by me, and produced by James and I. There’s no shed this time, but still lots of gore, blood and jokes. We hope to share this with the festival scene next year.
Months and months of hard work have now finally paid off! Yes, Blood Shed is now complete! Bringing this unique tale of a guy’s deep, obsessive love for his man-eating shed to life was far from easy, but James Moran and I can now finally celebrate as our short film is unleashed on audiences!
And even better still, we’ve had a terrific response to our trailer, and a flurry of fantastic news through from film festivals! Good news, it seems, is like buses! Long may it continue! I love it when a bus comes on time!
Blood Shed‘s WORLD PREMIERE will take place at the UK’s biggest genre festival – Horror Channel FrightFest, on 27th August! We’re especially thrilled to be part of FrightFest again and screening as one of only twenty-six shorts selected for the festival this year. Having our laughably twisted work recognised in this way is a big honour. We had no idea that our story about a bloodthirsty shed, with an aesthetic inspired by Creepshow and 80s horror, including the fashion and style, would strike a chord in this way.
Back when we wrote the first draft of the script together, last December, James and I could only have dreamed of getting this kind of response. This certainly makes the pain and torment of crowdfunding feel worth it, and we can’t wait to share it with all our pledgers, festival audiences and dare we say it, reviewers (*chews off nails frantically in anticipation*). As co-writer, producer and production designer of the piece, I put my heart and soul into Blood Shed… and she certainly enjoyed eating me up for months on end! But the hard work doesn’t stop now… The marketing and distribution has only just begun, merchandise has been designed and ordered, the extra content and digital goodies are being pulled together for Kickstarter supporters, and the press train is underway! When I see this image of our two amazing stars, Shaun Dooley and Sally Phillips, drenched in blood, it reminds me that they probably had it harder than me on this film!
Though Blood Shed has felt all-consuming (how many references to being eaten can I crowbar into this blog?!), 2017 has been a huge year for me in other respects, too.
Conniecontinues to enjoy success on the festival scene and has even picked up some awards, and festival acceptances are still coming in. Looks like there’s life in the little foul-mouthed puppet film yet! There are numerous festivals that I’m itching to announce, but can’t just yet, but there are some very exciting ones coming imminently, including GenreBlast and FilmQuest, both in the US in September!
My next project as writer/director, Hank: Portrait of a Serial Killer, is now in pre-production, with a view to shooting over the next few months… More on that soon.
This year I’ve also achieved a couple of massive life goals! I successfully completed my second Masters degree, in Professional Media Practice, validated by the University Of Bournemouth. My final project, on slasher films, feminism and psychoanalytic film theory, was the culmination of five years of blood, sweat and tears, and resulted in my original feature film script and insightful research on slasher films and feminism. Having studied previous modules at the Met Film School, Goldsmiths and with the BBC Academy, I learned and grew so much over the five years of study, and so many of my writing and directing projects have been researched, developed or inspired as a result of the MA. Considering I hated school when I was a kid and felt like a complete outsider, it’s hard to believe that I now have two Masters degrees!
But, an even bigger life goal has been unlocked that will make me look rather different in my graduation gown at the MA presentation ceremony in November… James and I are expecting a baby! Yes, a beautiful, no doubt loud, giggly and impatient, little girl! Not only will I be an MA, and MA, I will literally be a MAMA! James and I are both thrilled that we’ll be parents. We can’t wait to meet our little warrior woman and shower her with love.
But, I’m still writing, producing, directing and am generally unstoppable. There’s nothing that Team Moranic can’t achieve. We’ll just have a super cute, extra little team player on our side soon.
After a tiring month-long campaign, Blood Shed hit and exceeded its Kickstarter target on 27th March! James Moran and I are overjoyed. When we embarked on this crazy dream of a man-eating shed, we had no idea that we’d end up with pledges hitting 114% from 166 backers.
We initially aimed for £10,000, so this is a real triumph for us. Yes, Kickstarter takes a share of this for using the platform, and we have to cover the rewards and postage and packing from this amount, but this is still a good sum of money to make a really ambitious short film with. Nevertheless, purse strings will be tight and we want to make Blood Shed the most amazing film that we can, so we’re working round the clock on pre-production and will be squeezing the most from every single penny.
James is directing, I’m producing and we wrote the piece together – our first official writing collaboration – so this is rather a special project for us. It’s come a long way since my initial light bulb moment when I was cooking last November and improvising trailer voice overs for imaginary films! This happens to be how a lot of ideas come to me…
The support we’ve had from pledgers, press, bloggers, industry bods and film enthusiasts has been amazing, as has the support from family and friends. Running a crowdfunding campaign is tough – nothing prepares you for the sheer blood, sweat and tears that goes into it, and the round the clock management is all-consuming. You find yourself working through your sleep, skipping meals, unable to answer personal calls or even go out sometimes. Also, no amount of research into peak times, best times to launch and end, best times to make announcements, types of perks to offer and pricing, etc. really makes much of a difference – there’s a lot of luck and a lot of random peaks and troughs along the way. All the support we had really kept us going and motivated us to keep being creative and interacting in different ways across different platforms. You all helped us to keep the faith!
We shoot the film at the end of April, so just a few weeks away, and we’re hoping to have the film completed in June. The film stars the amazing Sally Phillips and Shaun Dooley, and we’ve an impressive team on board. You can read more about the cast and crew at the official Blood Shed website.
We still have a limited number of perks left, such as signed scripts, limited edition merchandise packs, digital downloads, writing-related perks, and props from the film. These perks are available for purchase from the Blood Shedwebsite until 1st May 2017 only.
I’ll keep posting updates, but more information will be added to the film’s website over time. For now Shedites, thank you. And I’m off for a quick sleep.
Some joy for the weekend! Blood Shedis now fully funded on Kickstarter! I’m absolutely over the moon that we hit our initial £10K target. After several weeks of round the clock campaigning, James Moran and I can finally rest assured that our weird but wonderful Creepshow-inspired short film, starring the incredible Sally Phillips and Shaun Dooley, will actually get made! We’ve an amazing team working with us on this film and can’t wait to share it with the world.
We’re still live on Kickstarter until Monday, March 27th at 8:59 AM BST, so if you haven’t seen our campaign rewards yet, head over and feast your eyes on our sexy perks – enriched with sheddy goodness. We have limited edition merchandise, writing workshops, unique props, signed scripts and even a slap up meal at BAFTA up for grabs! So, join us!
Our composer, Ben Foster, is hard at work creating the score, with help from his synth wizard, Toby Pitman. This very fine piece of kit is being used to create the music of the shed…
All of our pledgers are so important to us and we’re so happy that, as it stands, 149 people want to help this film get made and embark on this journey with us. You are all legends!
If you want to get involved but can’t afford to pledge – we understand that completely. Times are very hard, so we’re even more thankful to get support for this. We’re on Twitter as @bloodshedfilm and any retweets would help us get in last minute pledges and every single penny will make Blood Shed even more spectacular than it is already going to be.
What a week this is shaping up to be! Connie is now an award-winning film! We’ve bagged our first award from five nominations in just a few short months. Our wonderful lead, Catrin Stewart, won Best Actress at HorrorHound Weekend Film Festival in Ohio, US! Catrin is an incredibly talented actress and played both Connie and Dolly in the film, that’s thirty four scenes all shot in just two days. Thanks a million to HorrorHound for making us an award-winning film! Even Connie is bouncing around!
In other news, Connie has been accepted by more festivals, but we can’t announce these as yet! So keep your eyes, ears and puppets peeled for more news on these.
Also, we’re now into the last week of our crowdfunding campaign for Blood Shed. We’re currently 86% funded, which is amazing, but there are only 4 days left on the clock! Naturally, I’m in FULL panic mode. We’ve started with the pre-production on the film as we’re aiming to shoot in late April, and anyone who’s ever run a crowdfunding campaign knows that it is back-breaking, constant work. In many ways, it’s like having a baby for a month. BUT, it is the only way that Blood Shed can be funded.
New rewards have been added – you can have a photo of your pet appear in the film as a victim of our shed, there are very special unique retro Polaroid on-set photos available, screening tickets, signed goodies, merch! Please go and take a look. The shed needs you.. Well, I do. I mean, the film is set to star SALLY PHILLIPS and SHAUN DOOLEY. Who doesn’t want to see them and a man-eating shed in a Creepshow-style film? BARGAIN!
We’re on the home stretch with the Kickstarter campaign for Blood Shed, with just 9 days to go! We’re currently just over 70% funded. This is a lovely sprint to have achieved, but crowdfunding is a marathon. Believe me, it is definitely a marathon – possibly a double marathon. I’m personally surviving on coffee, Diet Coke, 2 hours sleep a night and an obsessive need to constantly refresh the Kickstarter page in case we’ve had a new pledge.
We’re really honoured to have an incredibly talented cast on board for this project. First, we have Shaun Dooley who will play the role of Jack. Shaun stars in the upcoming BBC One drama Gunpowder alongside Kit Harington and Liv Tyler! From the heartbreak of Broadchurch and the Red Riding trilogy, to the hit movies The Woman in Black, The Awakening and Eden Lake, Shaun can always be relied upon to deliver a powerhouse performance. He showed a sensitive yet terrifying side in Misfits, as well as a barnstorming singing voice, proving his range, flexibility and fiercely unpredictable edge. He’s also appeared in the TV shows DCI Banks, Ordinary Lies, Cuffs, Great Expectations, The Game, This is England ’90 and Exile. He is the only man who can take on a massive living shed…
Starring alongside Shaun is the incomparable Sally Phillips (Smack the Pony, Veep, Miranda, Green Wing, Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, Bridget Jonesfilms). She’s a comedy gem! These two actors are such a talented combination, and we desperately want to bring this film to life and share it with you all.
11 days sounds like a long time, but in reality, this is a heartbeat away. We’re entrenched in pre-production for Blood Shed (location hunting, crewing up, production design elements, music) as well as cracking on with crowdfunding campaign, but ultimately, we have to hit our £10K target or sadly, the film cannot be made. Not only would we be sad, the shed would go hungry. Please pledge if you can. She loves you.
If you’re in any doubt, here are some very wise words from our wonderful supporters. You can trust them – look, they’re cleverer than us! They know it’s a good concept!
Also, here’s a little press round up below! Click through each one to read the full article.
Thanks so much to everyone who has helped to spread the word so far! Please shout from the rooftops! 9 days… YIKES!