Rachel Maclean has been a revelation. When FVU asked me if I'd produce another art film for a Glaswegian based artist, I was concerned I already had too much on with the Maia workshops, getting La Fille De L'Estuaire development progressed enough to present at the Torino Film Lab and knowing I'd be shooting Clara's Voices of Finance too. I watched her work though and fell in love with it instantly. I read her script and that was it decided. So in June we started budgeting, casting and finding crew and helpers generally who were happy to come on board to help make the film. It was super ambitious at 60 minutes with all the backgrounds and animation to be generated in post, a very small budget and a firm deadline.
Rachel was really keen for there to be a musical element to the film, and we found Glasgow-based Finn Anderson to write the songs for us. That was a great exprience, and after Rachel and he spent a bit of time working together, we had 5 songs worthy of any Disney film tailored to our film and ready to record with our artists.
By the beginning of July Rachel had firmed up the script, we had cast all our actors who had practiced their songs and memorised their scripts and so we went to Edinburgh, Glasgow and London to record them. We had the most amazing cast and such a surreal experience as the voices all came together with the creepy dark undertones of the script and songs. We had Kevin Parr from Dundee, Dolina McLennan and Steven McNicoll in Edinburgh as Granny and The Beast. We had Sara Cartwright in Glasgow as our little Britney. In London we recorded Jaime Adler and DeNica Fairman as Charlotte and Claire - both incredible. Rachel had worked with Steven before and he was so great. But it was amazing sitting at Sonido recording studios in Glasgow and watching that little girl sing her heart out, each time to absolute perfection. In fact by the end we had to ask her to do it less well and she even managed to do that convingly! She came through PACE youth theatre in Glasgow and was really impressive.
After this Rachel had to go back and work on editing the sound track together while I got evrything ready for the shoot. Rachel would play all the roles, lipsynching to playback throughout. Rachel made all the costumes with the help of Mari Campistron and Lucy Payne who were amazing third year students at Glasgow School of Art - who gave Rachel a fair chunk of their summers to pull this together. Rachel had to get covered in prosthetics - a different role each day with the help of Kat Morgan.
We also knew we'd need to get extra help for all the VFX work, so we enlisted Colin Maclean (Rachel's brother) to help set up the computers, help with the shot and then be Rachel's right hand man right til we delivered the film in October.