Foxhole

After witnessing the death of several of their friends in a bloody skirmish, three battle-worn British soldiers must decide the fate of a lone fifteen-year-old German soldier.

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Genre
Drama
Scope
Short
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Production
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    Project

    Foxhole

    Genre
    Drama
    Seeking funding for
    Production
    Scope
    Short
    Campaign type
    Ongoing
    Image

    THE PROOF OF CONCEPT 

    THE STORY 

    After a bloody skirmish leaves several of their number dead, three inexperienced British troops discover a lone enemy survivor cowering in a fox hole. 
     
    Upon learning the terrified soldier is only fifteen, the group fractures, torn between executing the young German and offering him a chance at survival. The ever-pragmatic Palmer advocates for his swift dispatch, unable to see past the Nazi uniform, while the idealistic Barnes, driven by compassion, argues for the boy’s life. 

    Fearful of another ambush, and with their discourse turning violent, the British soldiers are forced to grapple with questions of morality and mercy as they consider the boy’s fate. 

    Foxhole is a timely exploration of the nature of war, the unexpected parallels between its unwitting participants and its unrelenting grip on humanity.

    THE CHARACTERS

    Pte. Norman Barnes
    18. New from the replacement pool. his shell shock yet to turn into PTSD. With little battle experience, he is unaware of what lies ahead.

    Lcpl. George Roberts

    Early 20s. Fresh faced - signed up, not enlisted. Intelligent but impractical, he is elevated to a position he is not suited to, and struggles to make decisions. 

    Pte . Frank Palmer.

    20s. The kind of guy who would have your back in a fight… unfortunately it’s one he has started himself. Protective and fiercely loyal, his time spent on the battlefield has almost completely eroded his empathy.

    Young German boy

    15. Conscripted into a War he doesn’t quite understand yet. Terrified for his life.

    Sgt. Donald Brown

    Mid 30s. The enemy would smell the disillusionment and whisky on him a mile away. 

    Pte. Wilfred Jones

    Mid 20s. Scrawny, but makes up for it with a puffed-up chest. Competitive and eager to impress his comrades. Able to lift the mood and create a laugh in the darkest of times.

    THE DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT 

    When I was first sent the script, I was drawn in by the intense journey the audience is taken on in such a brief amount of time. I will reflect this by utilising almost documentary style camera work to further reveal the moral questions at the film’s heart: What makes a soldier? Who decides what is right and wrong during war? When does a soldier lose their humanity?

    After the opening - the calm before the storm - the camera will follow Barnes, our protagonist through the chaotic battle, in one single close shot. During this, we see only glimpses of the violence around him - bullets whizzing past, a soldier shot in the neck, muzzle flashes from the unseen enemy in the distance - as he himself ducks and weaves, doing all he can to stay alive. As the camera tracks around Barnes we focus on his reaction to the violence, rather than the violence itself. 

    Towards the end of the skirmish, we will switch the focus to Palmer, as he pushes forwards towards the enemy, dispatching them swiftly. This is a character who, galvanised by the same violence we have just witnessed, sees his duty as kill or be killed. 

    Sound design will be incredibly important throughout, heightening the immense sense of danger and the horrors of battle. Once the skirmish is over, we are confronted by the only German survivor - a fifteen-year-old boy and the subject of the intense debate between our three surviving British soldiers. 

    We will use tight, handheld camera work and fast-paced editing, heightening the tension and keeping the audience wondering whose side of the argument will ultimately win out. Through the naturalistic performances, reactive camera work and immersive sound design, the film will feel close, real and intimate, giving the audience the sense they are inside the action and constantly moving with it, right up until the credits roll. At which point, the audience will be left with one question -

    What would they have done?

    - Tom Brittney, Director.

     

    THE BUDGET

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    The above pie-chart outlines our budget breakdown. Our main priority is ensuring that our cast and crew are paid during the filming process.

    We are looking to raise funds to cover accommodation, the cost of equipment, and food and travel for our cast and crew. 

    ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS

    As our subject matter covers one of the biggest moments in world history, we want to ensure that it is handled with sensitivity. Having historical and military advisors on board is important to ensure that whilst we are creating an entertaining piece of drama, we are being respectful, and as accurate as possible to the time period. The research carried out by the team has taken 11 months so far, and we will continue to carry out further research to ensure we make appropriate adjustments where necessary.

    Typically, World War II-inspired projects have been male dominated environments but our project - under the leadership of our producer Gabriella Fortuna - puts a strong emphasis on gender representation. About to complete her Masters Degree in Film and Television, Gabriella has just launched her own production company Fortuna Pictures with Foxhole as its debut film.  

    Foxhole is a story about young British soldiers. This means we are able to employ actors who are at the start of their careers enabling them to get their foot in the door of an incredibly competitive industry. 

    These kinds of stories have repeatedly been told through one homogeneous lens, and the representation of the global majority has often been neglected. This is not strictly historically accurate, and though Foxhole does not place diversity at the forefront of our story, it naturally includes it as part of the history.

    Behind the camera, inclusion is also a priority for the team. We will ensure that our departments including crew, hair and makeup, costume, runners, producers are inclusive and not discriminatory of gender, race, sexuality, disability, class and professional experience levels.

    We are in the process of assembling a talented crew made up of both industry professionals and recent graduates. Our sound designer, Charlie Smith, is a recent graduate in audio production from the University of Westminster. Working alongside our director Tom, and partnering with a sound designer from Smoke and Mirrors, will establish a firm foundation for his future career. 

    During the shoot itself we will work with local companies in Thetford for accommodation, food and weaponry hire, with an emphasis on supporting smaller, independent businesses. 

     

    MEET THE TEAM


     

    TOM BRITTNEY - DIRECTOR

    Tom Brittney is an actor, director and producer who trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. He currently stars as rev. Will Davenport in ITV’s Grantchester. Other screen credits include Outlander, Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool with Jamie Bell, and WWII thriller Greyhound opposite Tom Hanks. As well as starring in Grantchester, Tom is an executive producer on the show and also runs his own production company, Wild Nest Pictures.

    Wild Nest currently has five TV and Film projects in various stages of development and are working alongside several production companies, including Sky Cinema.

    As a director, he has directed two episodes of ‘Grantchester’, and is currently developing his debut feature, based on the novel ‘The Whale Tattoo’ by Jon Ransom. Wild Nest’s development slate also includes an adaptation of WWI crime novels The Mayfair 100 on which they partnered with Patrick Melrose outfit Little Island Productions.

     

    ADAM HOWES & HARRY DAVIES - THE WRITERS

    Adam and Harry are a writing duo based in London and North Shropshire. Their debut satirical short The Contract - starring Harry Enfield, Dan Snow and Max Brown - was a finalist for best script at The British Short Film Awards in 2022 and is currently available on Amazon Prime. Adam and Harry’s TV projects include pitch black comedy-horror White Christmas – which is currently in creative development with David Walliams’ production company, King Bert – and espionage thriller Berlin,  which has been optioned by Kudos founder, Debbie Mason.


    GABRIELLA FORTUNA - PRODUCER

    Gabriella is an actor and creative who has most recently worked on Sky Max’s 80s crime drama A Town Called Malice, short film A Faceful of Paint by Peter Maughan and several commercial projects in and out of the UK. Using her background as a performer, Gabriella has pursued her studies in Film and Television at Falmouth University to gain a broader knowledge of the work involved on the other side of the camera. Having just launched Fortuna Pictures Ltd, she is now utilising her Masters degree to produce ambitious projects and assist other filmmakers to grow and develop their ideas.

     

    TIAN SCOTT - PRODUCER

    Tian Scott is an actor and creative based in London. Tian grew up training as a national gymnast before moving into performance with Albert and Friends Instant Circus. After leaving BRIT, Tian continued his training at East15, followed by a BA in Acting at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. His recent work includes - Masters of the Air (Apple TV+) and A Faceful of Paint by Peter Maughan. Tian currently also works at Electric Theatre Collective, (post production house) assisting the team and expanding his knowledge in this area.


    REGGIE MCHALE - ASSISTANT PRODUCER

    Reggie McHale is an actor and historical advisor with experience in First & Second World War re-enactment and firearms handling, and is currently completing his training for the British stunt register. After landing his first featured role in Masters of The Air, Reggie has since worked on other film and television projects including A Memory Owed as well as working alongside Peter Facinelli in Can You Hear Me
    Utilising his extensive knowledge of World War II he is currently working as both an associate producer and historical advisor for this project.

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    £3,351.00
    raised of £30,000.00 goal
    Ongoing
    40 Backers

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