By Emma Gant.
Following a successful crowdfunding campaign, a group of film students will be producing a short film detailing the struggles of an LGBT Japanese artists.
The Nail that Sticks Out is about Aiko, a controversial Japanese artist living in the UK and follows her life as she completes her latest collection.
The film raised over £4,000 in crowdfunding and received a grant from De Montfort University but the film’s creators say that more public funding needs to be available for filmmakers.
Rhianne Deans, location and unit production manager, said: “I think indie British cinema would receive a lot more support from mainstream funding and providers if we had more diverse stories coming out of Britain.”
“We have such diverse people that live in this country that it would be nice to start seeing stories that are more representative.”
Crowdfunding has become a popular way of funding film production, recently crowdfunded films include the sequel to 2002 cult hit Super Trooper.
“Short films are a great way for new people to showcase their talents who are hoping for a career in the film industry.
“But making short films is expensive, so crowdfunding is a vital source of funding for short films,” said producer Jamie Ball.
Crowdfunding sites are flooded with films of all lengths hoping to raise enough money to get made, which Jamie thinks is indicative of the wealth of talent and ideas out there.
However, with so little funding available for indie films in the UK, crowdfunding has become an increasingly popular and necessary part of the filmmaking process.
Rhianne believes that if there were more diverse stories coming out of British indie cinema, then more funding would be given to projects centred around showcasing different cultures.
“Indie British Cinema would receive a lot more support from mainstream funding and providers if we had more diverse stories coming out of Britain.
“We have such diverse people that live in this country that it would be nice to start seeing stories that are more representative,” she said.
But another problem facing independent films is the lack of distribution opportunities as most short, and independent feature-length, films aren’t shown in UK cinemas.
“Our cinema screens are packed with Hollywood blockbusters meaning fewer British movies getting shown, and we don’t have a culture that embraces short films outside of film festivals and through the internet.
“It would be great to see short films, showcasing new talent, being shown in cinemas somehow,” said Jamie.
Until this changes, films like The Nail That Sticks Out are limited to niche internet streaming services and film festival entries to give them much needed exposure.
Hopefully, the meteoric 45% rise in independent cinema box office takings in the past few years will trickle down to indie films, opening new stories, cultures and film formats to the British public.