I’ve been GIF’d. Ha ha ha ha ha! #Bronson #Stronglook
T H A N K - Y O U !
I have a love of West Africa and the artists that live in these countries. My brother and his family lived in West Africa for about 10 years on two different occasions and two different countries. I visited him for 35 days when he lived in Dapaong, Togo and 14 days when he lived in Abidjan, Cote d’ivoire.
I have such a respect for the people who make their living through art and creativity. I have collected some of the most beautiful work on my visits. I have seen fantasy coffins and admired the work that went into them. I also am a photographer and have done some film work, so when I saw this project it was a “marriage made in heaven”, art and documentary.
I want to help preserve this craft and supporting this project brings awareness to the creativity of the great carpenters of Ghana and their gift of teaching others to carry on with this tradition.
Paa Joe’s craft needs to continue as an integral part of the local funeral culture and as a craft of creative art. I feel compelled to help you make this happen. Preservation through documentary awareness. Great project. When this is completed, and I know it will happen, I will be making a trip to England to hopefully meet you and the team and see the outcome of my investment.
Best wishes to you!
Constance Brinkley, Associate Producer of Paa Joe & The Lion.
There’s still time to join her and the rest of #TeamPaaJoe by pledging to Kickstarter here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/paajoeandthelion/paa-joe-and-the-lion-documentary?ref=live
We recently received a lovely message from our Associate Producer, Constance Brinkley (who pledged over £1,500 through Kickstarter) and thought we’d share it with you.
Here’s just one of the many reasons people are supporting Paa Joe & The Lion, and we could couldn’t be happier about it!If…
Thank you Constance Brinkley for your beautiful words and welcome to #TeamPaaJoe. Xx
Pop In to the Pop Up!
The Creative Quarter have just opened their doors to their Pop Up Shop in Nottingham city centre. It’s where the furniture shop, Dwell, used to be on Fletcher Gate…by the Lace Market tram stop, next door to Tesco Express. You know where I mean? Good.
Well, why don’t you pop in and have a look at Broadway’s pop up cinema that is currently housing none other than our lil’ lion. Chill out with him and watch half an hour of footage from the film on a split double screen and completely immerse yourself in the Paa Joe & The Lion experience before the film’s even out!!
He’ll be there until Tuesday 12th November (which is also the Kickstarter deadline day!!) - so pop in on your lunch break, pop in when you need to shelter from the rain, or pop in on your way home from work.
Creative Quarter Pop Up Shop opening times are:
Tuesday - Saturday 11am - 7pm
Sunday 11am - 4pm
Monday - Closed
And you can even bag some gorgeous Christmas presents there too from the other wonderful people who have popped up their shops to sell their homemade and unique wares.
Just 4 days left of the Kickstarter campaign so please pledge now!!
Interview with Anna Griffin, producer of Paa Joe & The Lion
People often ask about the various roles involved in making an independent film like ours. So, we decided to shed some light on the behind the scenes action.
Here’s an introduction to our producer Anna and what she gets up to making films like ours, not to mention working alongside star talent and top directors like Nicolas Winding Refn.
Anna Griffin is an independent film producer who works for Wellington Films. She has been involved with a range of productions including Bronson and Only God Forgives and has recently produced the spine-chilling short horror, The Gas Man.
How did you get into Producing?
I landed my first job as a Production Runner on the seminal film, Goal!3 in 2007. Rachel Robey hired me and Rachel Dargavel got my foot in the door. From there I went on to work on numerous productions, many of which took place in Notts, (Bronson, Unmade Beds, Skeletons) in various roles, Director’s Assistant, Floor Runner, 3AD. I loved the buzz of working on a shoot but was always a bit bummed that that was the only part of the process I saw. I wanted to know what happened before and after the shoot.
Since 2010 I’ve been with Wellington Films, the brilliant production company behind London to Brighton, founded by Al Clark and Rachel Robey, my first boss. And more recently, I’ve joined forces with Rachel Dargavel and her company, Crybaby. It’s all gone full circle!
For the uninitiated, what exactly does a producer do?
Try to make the director’s dream come to life. A less floaty answer would be plan, budget, write, encourage ideas, solve problems, drive vans, try to keep everyone happy, cook breakfast and try to pay people on time.
What has been your favourite film to work on so far – and why?
Oh goodness, they’ve all been incredible for so many reasons! Bronson was ace because it was my first time working with Nicolas Winding Refn and I just think the film is incredible. And the duties were varied – being sent on cookie-buying errands to helping with script amendments. Unmade Beds was filmed almost entirely in Roden House, Sneinton, and by the end of it, it really did feel like cast and crew had become one big weird bohemian family. Best wrap party EVER! On Skeletons the director, Nick Whitfield, called everyone Jimmy and we were filming in a village near Matlock where everyone seemed to have pampas grass in their front gardens… I’ve heard that’s supposed to signify something.
I actually can’t pick my favourite and I think that’s because for a couple of years, with the help of local screen agency EM Media, there were so many great films being produced in Notts. This meant that we had loads of really talented crewmembers based here. We’d all go from one production to another together, eating on double-decker dining buses in the cold and gossiping about who fancied who. It was really fun and built the foundations for some great friendships and working relationships.
Have you got a funny behind-the-scenes moment you could share with us?
During Bronson and Valhalla Nicolas would choose to shout “Let’s f**k” instead of “Action”, often to the horror of any unsuspecting set visitors or extras we’d have on set that day.
As a producer what’s the question you get asked most often?
Can we afford that? Normally,no.
Who’s the nicest celeb you’ve met?
Mads Mikkelsen, nicest, funnest, silliest man in Hollywood. All round babe.
What has been the toughest part of the Paa Joe project so far?
Well, I thought it was trying to organise a performance with fire spinners, Vikings, drummers, dancers, a stilt walker, giant puppets and a 6ft lion. But it turns out it’s trying to run a Kickstarter campaign.
What has been the best part of the Paa Joe project so far?
Having Paa Joe and Jacob over in Nottingham in the summer. It was such an honour to be working with them, seeing them create the masterpiece that is The Lion. And taking them to see Paa Joe’s eagle coffin in the British Museum was really special. He’d never seen his work in an exhibition space before and the British Museum is a pretty magical place. Plus watching Jacob eat a burger for the first time at Annie’s Burger Shack… I think it’s safe to say he enjoyed that.
And we had so many laughs, in between the tiredness. Even now I can’t think of Anthony Caro without smiling from ear to ear. (For a long time we thought Anthony Caro had visited Paa Joe’s workshop in Ghana. After many phone calls and emails with his assistant, trying to set up meetings with the world-renowned artist and one of the best sculptors Britain has ever produced, we realised it was Aunty Carol who’d visited Paa Joe’s workshop).
If you could travel back in time to when you were first starting out and could give yourself some advice, what would it be?
Don’t underestimate anything – money, time, effort or energy – production’s a tough slog.
Plans for the future?
For the Paa Joe & The Lion party to take over the world!
For more information see http://paajoe.artdocs.co.uk
And please support our film on Kickstarter - we’ve only got 7 days left and several thousand pounds to raise - every small (or large!) donation gets us one step closer. Thank you! http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/paajoeandthelion/paa-joe-and-the-lion-documentary
BEFORE PAA JOE THERE WAS SIR PAUL SMITH
Here’s director Ben Wigley’s award-winning short film PS Your Mystery Sender(after the trailer for his latest project) for your enjoyment.
The film began when Ben heard about the world renowned fashion designer receiving strange and curious gifts from an anonymous admirer .
With 20 years’ worth of these mysterious offerings to show Paul agreed to meet our film-maker to discuss these odd items along with other ideas such as his inspirations, creative process and much more.
Read all about it!!!
Paa Joe’s story deserves to be told. A great son of Ghana. His work exemplifies a rich culture in which ancient traditional craftsmanship and modern aspirational or symbolic artefacts combine in the rituals of death to produce individual works of art which demand wider recognition and dissemination. It is right that a cinematic craftsman of Ben Wigley’s stature should have taken up the challenge. I for one am glad to give this exciting venture my support. At last a coffin I can enjoy!
THE RT. HON. LORD PAUL BOATENG OF AKYEM IN GHANA & WEMBLEY IN THE UK & ASSOCIATE PRODUCER OF PAA JOE & THE LION.
ONLY 8 DAYS TO GO! WAAAAAAHHHH!
We’re offering one lucky person a chance to grab a full delegate pass to Sheffield Doc/Fest right now on our Kickstarter. So, here’s our producer Anna Griffin to share some of her best experiences of this amazing film festival…
An Insiders Guide to Sheffield Doc/Fest –
Roller Discos, Real Ale & The Best Documentaries in the World
Sheffield Doc/Fest really is unlike any film festival I’ve ever attended before. It’s fun, it’s vibrant and there aren’t any egos in the room. Well, not in the rooms I go in anyway.
As soon as you get off the train and you see the bright pink boards and flags with big bold writing “Sex & Docs & Rock ‘n’ Roll”, you know you’re in for a treat. And everyone seems to be carrying record-bags with the same message. And you want one! So you head to The Workstation and join the queue of excited film fans and filmmakers. You get your bag and inside there’s a plethora of goodies! A catalogue, a ‘who’s who’ guide, DVDs, badges, stickers, event invitations…it’s like being given the party bag before you’ve even found the party!
Then, the roller coaster begins. First stop, get your ticket for the opening event! If you don’t, the next day is like being in the playground at school when you didn’t watch Big Brother the night before and everyone else did. Last year saw Jarvis Cocker lead a live orchestra including a brass band, a harpist, a choir and Richard Hawley! The orchestra were providing the live soundtrack to The Big Melt, an archive film produced by festival director, Heather Croall, and Crossover Lab Director, Mark Atkin. The event was held in The Crucible and it was stunning – completely immersive. Everyone was wowed and Jarvis looked like he was having the time of his life.
The year before we were honoured to be in the presence of Rodriguez when he surprised everyone by performing a secret gig at the opening night party. The crowd, from first time filmmakers to hugely influential commission editors watched and listened together. It was beautiful.
Then the next few days are filled with whatever you choose to fill them with:
- Gain insight into the inner world of documentary making with industry panels
- Marvel at interactive, cross-platform projects in the Crossover Lounge
- Watch filmmakers of the future try to secure their finance in front of a live audience in public pitches
- …and of course watch films, films, films!
And if it all gets a bit too much, then you can just slip off to the Café Bar at The Showroom and sample some of Doc/Fest’s own real ale while you peruse the film and event guide and decide what you’re going to do that night.
And the night-time events kick total ass too! The Thursday night is roller-disco night. If you’re anything like me just make sure you’ve got someone with you to keep you standing. Two years running I’ve crashed into a very influential distributor, luckily he’s also one of the nicest men in the industry so it’s fiiiiine, and maybe one day it’s something we’ll laugh about at the premiere of our film he’s distributed (fingers crossed, fingers crossed!) and Friday night it’s Guilty Pleasures hosted by Documentary Campus. If the bright pink bunting and the roller disco weren’t camp enough, you just wait until you get to Guilty Pleasures. The crowd of filmmakers, financiers, distributors and commissioning editors all whoop and squeal together when cabaret dance troupe Hot Gusset hit the stage. Oh my, they’re amazing.
But of course, the most important and impressive part of the festival is the films that are showcased. Sheffield Doc/Fest truly is one of the most influential and respected documentary film festivals in the world, attracting world premieres from films that go on to win accolades the world over. I’ve only been going to Doc/Fest for the past 2 years but the documentaries I’ve seen there will stay with me forever.
Big up the Doc/Fest team! The most hard-working and nicest people in the industry who will do anything they can to help. The other night, I was emailing Deputy Director, Charlie Phillips, and he was responding until 11pm! “Why are you still answering your emails?” I asked. “Because you’re emailing” was the response. For a group of people who are perpetually busy, they always make time to support filmmakers in any way they can. So, thank you Doc/Fest team for being totally rad and creating one of the best events of the year.
- Heather Croall – Festival Director, film producer & roller skating pro
- Charlie Phillips – Deputy Director, quickest man on emails, giver of great advice & super sharp dresser
- Hussain Currimbhoy – Director of Programming, another sharp dresser & great taste in films
- Sylvia Wroblewska – Business & Marketing Director, ex-Current TV producer, beautiful hair
- Chris Black – Marketplace Manager, super busy, super helpful, super beard.
- Mark Atkin – Crossover Lab Director, Head Master of Documentary Campus Masterschool, lover of bold dance floor moves
To find out more about how you can grab an exclusive Sheffield Doc/Fest pass head to our Kickstarter page now
On the Road Again!
Look at those strong men making sure he gets there safe and sound.
Video edited by David Louis Lankester of Wowsers Trousers fame.
| MINIATURE LIONS AVAILABLE FROM PAA JOE & THE LION KICKSTARTER |
| THEY’RE SOOOOOOOOOOOO CUTE!!!! |
I PAA JOE & THE LION NEEDS YOU! |
| We are now live on Kickstarter |
| Get miniature coffins, t-shirts, tote bags, our eternal love & gratitude! |