Interview: Amy Merry


Amy Merry is a film and television graphic designer, nominated for the Craft & Design Award for Best Titles, Royal Television Society, for her work with Yianni Papanicolaou on BBC Two’s  THE HOUR, where she was also an art director. She has also worked on Secret Diary of a Call Girl, Frankenstein, Upstairs Downstairs, The King’s Speech, Bright Star, and The Firm. You can […]

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Raising Films Recommends…: London Film Festival 2016


Raising Films is going to be participating in lots of film festivals over the coming year – and we’re pretty excited. For your viewing pleasure, and to celebrate awesome family and caring-centred filmmaking, we’ll be offering recommendations for each of them for festival attendees, and to put future viewing on your radar. First up, the BFI London Film Festival 2016 (we thought we’d start […]

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The Levelling: A Final Look


The Levelling receives its world premiere tonight at the Toronto International Film Festival. In our final instalment of the case study, writer/director Hope Dickson Leach (HDL) talks to her husband Phil Miller (PJEM) about primary parenting, routine and freezers full of food. * HDL: The film is done and we’re now getting ready to fly to Toronto for the World […]

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Prevenge: Alice Lowe on Finding Her Film and Finding Her Feet

Prevenge_1_Copyright Western Edge Pictures

Tonight, PREVENGE receives its world premiere at Venice Critics’ Week. Below, in our third instalment of our Prevenge Case Study, Alice Lowe talks us through the edit process with a tiny baby on her lap. * I find that with films, as with pregnancy, people talk about during and not as much after. So here’s my account of finishing a […]

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Prevenge: Alice Lowe on Pregnancy, Production & Panic Buckets


Here’s our second instalment of Alice Lowe’s case study of making her first feature film, Prevenge, whose world premiere will open Critics’ Week at the 2016 Venice Film Festival. Read the first instalment, about the shoot, here. * It’s upsetting and sad that people put off kids because we’re waiting for that big break. There’s so much about filmmaking where the metaphor of child-raising […]

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Interview: Kelly O’Brien

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Kelly O’Brien is an independent filmmaker and mother of three who lives in Toronto. Her film “Softening” won the grand jury prize in the shorts competition at the 2013 DOC NYC festival and appeared in the New York Times online. She recently exhibited her experimental personal narrative “Postings from Home” at the 2016 Images Festival in Toronto. Point of View magazine called […]

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Interview: Joeli Brearley


Joeli Brearley is founder of the project and campaign Pregnant Then Screwed, a place for women to tell their stories of pregnancy and maternity discrimination to expose this systemic problem and make a case for recognition, change and respect. She writes about pregnancy and maternity discrimination as well feminism, technology and art. Brearley worked as a freelance creative producer, project manager […]

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Testimonial: Vicki Lesley


Making a film is hard. Making a film and having a baby is a lot harder! Back in 2006, I was a busy freelancer working on popular factual shows for broadcasters like the BBC, Channel 4 and Discovery, travelling the world and generally having a great time. But deep down I yearned to work on something a bit more serious. Looking back, […]

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Testimonial: Pippa Best

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As a young producer’s assistant, then script editor, then head of development, I was too busy working and chasing the next bit of development funding to think about kids. But by 30, I’d built up enough regular freelance script editing clients to risk moving from London to Cornwall with my Cornish partner (who was suffering from London’s distinct lack of […]

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Esther May Campbell: Heroes and Gods


Esther May Campbell‘s debut feature LIGHT YEARS, produced by Samm Haillay, premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2015, and is currently crowd-funding for self-distribution to cinemas in the UK, and on VOD and DVD, to reach the widest audience possible. * Men and women are different. Whether because of our genes or conditioning. We experience, at home and on the street, playground […]

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#MakeItPoss: Raising Films’ Survey is Now LIVE


Literally: coming from the Edinburgh International Film Festival, where Penny Woolcock is kicking things off with her Making It Possible keynote. Keynote speaker Penny Woolcock, "We need a system that values real life experiences, and those parents that have them." #MakeItPoss — Raising Films (@FFFilmmaking) June 22, 2016 Penny Woolcock delivering her Keynote speech for @FFFilmmaking #MakeItPoss #eiffindustry — EIFF Industry (@eiffindustry) […]

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Testimonial: Alex Helfrecht and Jörg Tittel


We are Co-Directors, Co-Writers and Co-Parents. Oh yeah, and we’ve been married for nearly a decade. Not that we have much time to think about such trivial things like love. We shot our first feature, THE WHITE KING, in Hungary last year, which meant moving the whole family, including our two children Olivia (then four) and Raphael (then two) abroad […]

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Interview: Maja Borg

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Maja Borg was born in Norrköping, Sweden, in 1982. She is an Artist and Film Director, additionally working as Director of Photography and Editor. In 2005, Borg’s ‘To She In Me’ was selected for the Culture Bound 7, East Wing Collection at the Courtauld Institute, London, and she so became the youngest artist ever to exhibit in this context. Her 52-minute […]

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Interview: Penny Woolcock


Penny Woolcock is a writer and director with a background in radical theatre and the trade union movement. She has worked across film, television, radio, and live opera, and made both fiction films and documentaries. She is best known for the “Tina” trilogy – Tina Goes Shopping, Tina Takes a Break and Mischief Night – and for her recent work with young people navigating […]

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Testimonial: Beatrice Read


Sometimes I feel like an Uber driver in Los Angeles. I’ve moved to a city where my skill is necessary and much valued, but comes with no job security. And definitely no tips. I’m a freelance Archive Producer, which involves footage and photo research and clearances for documentaries, commercials and the occasional drama. Speaking of drama, I became a mum […]

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Shooting Away From Home: What We Learned


This week we had our first informal Raising Films gathering, to discuss Shooting Away From Home. A room of parents gathered to share their experiences, or to find answers to questions that were worrying them. Some people were shooting away from home for the first time, some had done it before, but when their children were much younger, so they […]

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Raising Films, Raising Questions: Making Change with Directors UK, EWA and Women Call the Shots

Calling the Shots

It’s so stark that even Variety noticed: May has bloomed with reports on gender inequality in the UK film and television industries. It’s a lot of data, so we’re very grateful for this handy round-up from The F-Word by Ania Ostrowska. The take home? Not great. Our partner organisation EWA announced their preliminary results at Berlin, and will unveil their multi-national survey report at Cannes next week; Directors UK, our partners […]

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Making It Possible – join us on 22nd June at EIFF

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The Raising Films team are excited to announce a unique opportunity for emerging filmmakers to access expert, personalised advice and support on balancing film and family. In partnership with EIFF and Directors UK, and funded by Creative Scotland, Raising Films are holding a career planning and personal development session for 16 film industry professionals, who are facing the challenge of balancing their professional life and […]

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Testimonial: Emma Cummins


The VFX industry, as I know it, is not a 9-5 existence, quite often we work late to meet deadlines, or to take calls from state side clients. Also, when on shoots, VFX related shots often get shunted to the end of a day’s schedule as there is no requirement to pay VFX crew overtime. 60 hour weeks are fairly normal, […]

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The Levelling: Post


I get home back to Edinburgh on Halloween. My children are out guising, and the house is empty and dark. I drag in my muddy welly boots and collapse. The doorbell rings and there are a group of children offering me a joke, a song, a scare. I take them all and then realise I have to give them sweets. […]

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Prevenge: Alice Lowe on Murder, Cardiff & Making a Human


It’s mid-December 2015 and I’ve got a month to work on the edit of Prevenge before I give birth. We shot a month ago, in Cardiff: I’ve spent Hallowe’en in Cardiff before, and I knew it would be interesting. Everyone was dressed as absolutely crazy things. We filmed on the streets for one particular sequence. We were out at 8pm […]

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Interview: Clare Binns


Clare Binns is Acquisitions & Programming Director for the Picturehouse Cinema Group. As well as acquiring titles for Picturehouse Entertainment, she is responsible for overall programming policies. Winner of the 2009 WFTV Award for Contribution to the Medium and 2015 Screen Awards Exhibition Achievement Award, Clare is a member of both the London Film Festival Industry Liaison Committee and the BAFTA Learning […]

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Interview: Esther May Campbell

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Esther May Campbell’s debut feature LIGHT YEARS premieres at the London Film Festival on 14 October 2015. A self-taught writer and director, her short ‘September’ won the Best Short Film BAFTA 2009, and she has worked on the TV shows SKINS and WALLANDER, as well as making music videos and sex education videos. Working with the Cube Cinema collective in Bristol, she mobilizes […]

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Interview: Beeban Kidron


Beeban Kidron, Baroness Kidron, OBE, is a filmmaker, activist and campaigner. Her early films, Carry Greenham Home and Oranges are Not the Only Fruit, are key texts of British and feminist cinema. She subsequently moved to Hollywood, making films including Used People, To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar and Amy Foster. Her 2004 film Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason had the second-highest admissions in Europe of any European […]

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Testimonial: Hattie Morahan

© Jack Ladenburg

Hattie Morahan is a stage and screen star. She was was awarded the Best Actress prize at the Critics’ Circle Awards 2013 and won the Natasha Richardson Award for Best Actress at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2012 for her portrayal of Nora in Carrie Cracknell’s A DOLL’S HOUSE at The Young Vic, which transferred to the West End and New York. She has been seen recently […]

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Testimonial: Deborah Sathe


Deborah Sathe is Head of Talent Development and Production at Film London. She oversees groundbreaking domestic and international projects which champion new talent and audiences. Last year she relaunched the award-winning feature film fund Film London Microwave, and through its initial round has greenlit two projects from over 160 applications. Alongside this she delivers short film schemes and key training programmes which […]

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Interview: Helene Klodawsky

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Helene Klodawsky is a veteran independent filmmaker – a passionate storyteller committed to portraying political and social struggles, as well as to exploring the documentary art form. Helene is known for poignant, daring films. Painted Landscapes of the Times (1986), Shoot and Cry (1988), Motherland (1994), What If (1998),Undying Love (2002), No More Tears Sister (2005), Family Motel (2007), and Malls R Us (2009) are among her best known […]

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Testimonial: Stevie Lee

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My name is Stevie Lee. I run a tiny film and TV production company called Runaway Fridge from home. I have two children: my son Joss is 10 (and profoundly autistic), Bebe is just 4. I’m a development producer script editor who was ‘raised’ to producer status with the film FRANK by a particularly generous and loyal producer partner. The scope […]

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Interview: Kris Swanberg


Kris Swanberg is the writer-director of the independent feature films It Was Great, But I Was Ready to Come Home, Marriage Material, Empire Builder and Unexpected, and director of the web series Young American Bodies. She has also appeared in films by her husband Joe Swanberg such as Kissing on the Mouth and Hannah Takes the Stairs. Unexpected premiered this year at […]

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Testimonial: Becca Ellson


Becca Ellson (seen here holding her baby sister) is an Independent Development Producer and Script Editor whose work includes BAFTA-nominated feature TAKING LIBERTIES, critically acclaimed experimental piano performance MOMENTS OF WEIGHTLESSNESS and 23 multi-award-winning short films for the BFI and BBC including Cannes Critic’s Week Canal+ winner CROCODILE; BAFTA nominees TURNING, KEEPING UP WITH THE JONES’, SEAVIEW and ORBIT EVER AFTER; Academy Award shortlisted SLR and Academy […]

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Testimonial: Samm Haillay

Samm and Bert in the office

Sam Haillay has a long list of producing credits, including “Better Things” and “Bypass”, both written and directed by Duane Hopkins and documentaries such as “6 Desires: DH Lawrence and Sardinia” directed by Mark Cousins, and “The Uprising” directed by Peter Snowdon. * Working as a film producer, a film consultant and a senior associate lecturer means my time at home […]

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Interview: Alexandra Hidalgo

Photograph by Aidan Tyson

Alexandra Hidalgo is a documentary filmmaker, an assistant professor at Michigan State University, and the co-founder and editor-in-chief of agnès films, a site for female filmmakers. Her current project is Vanishing Borders, a feature documentary telling the story of four immigrant women living in New York City, and she is also the director of Perfect, a documentary about middle-class Venezuelan women and the […]

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Testimonial: Debbie Isitt

Debbie Isitt

Debbie Isitt is one of the UK’s most prolific directors. She is known for her improvisational style of working with actors, a model that has produced critical and box office hits like “Confetti”, starring Martin Freeman and Jessica Hynes, which was nominated for a British Comedy Award, “Nasty Neighbours” starring Ricky Tomlinson, and the hugely popular “Nativity” series of films, the […]

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THE SLOG – Campaign Launch


The summer holidays are upon us and the Raising Films family are busy. Busy with kids, busy with films, busy with marking and proposals and budgets all the things that make up our busy lives. Like all parents, we’ve realised we need help. So we’re raising funds to raise films. We want to hire someone to take charge of this […]

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Interview: Romola Garai


Romola Garai is an acclaimed actor, writer and director, twice nominated for Golden Globe awards and BIFA awards. ‘Scrubber’, which she wrote, directed and produced, was released as part of Soda Pictures’ New British Cinema Quarterly in 2012. Since her breakout film role in I Capture the Castle (2003), she has appeared in – among others – Vanity Fair (2005), Angel (2007), Atonement (2007), and One Day […]

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