The Sin-Eater

1852, Wales: a desperate young mother carries out a forbidden ritual to save the soul of her unbaptised dead baby, but is tricked into taking on a terrifying supernatural burden.
The Sin-Eater is a powerful gothic horror short film that needs a little help to get it over the line.

£3,281.00
raised of £3,000.00 goal
Funded
100 Backers
Genre
Horror
Scope
Short
Seeking funding for
Completion
Campaign type
Flexible Funding
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    Project

    The Sin-Eater

    Genre
    Horror
    Seeking funding for
    Completion
    Scope
    Short
    Campaign type
    Flexible Funding
    Image

    1852, Wales: a desperate young mother carries out a forbidden ritual to save the soul of her unbaptised dead baby, but is tricked into taking on a terrifying supernatural burden.

    Set in the 1850s, The Sin-Eater is a Gothic supernatural period drama about 'sin-eating', a little known but real ritual in Wales and the borders. Filmed in Welsh and English, the film is set for release in 2023, and we intend to premiere it at Oscar/Bafta qualifying festivals, as well as popular genre festivals around the world.

    The Sin-Eater is short film with support from BFI NETWORK with National Lottery funds. We shot in November 2022 in North Wales and just need a little help to complete the film. We had issues with our VFX shots on the final day of shooting and need to do a reshoot to pick up those shots. 

    As we have already shot over 95% of the film we can let you know quite a bit of info on our astonishing cast and show you a little from the film itself.

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    The Sin-Eater is a high-end Gothic short, about a woman trying to save the soul of her baby. Jemima is suffering terrible grief and will do anything she can to save her boy, which gives us a very emotional film. Carly-Sophia Davies was the perfect Jemima, tapping into the impact of losing a child so early and the hope that the sin-eating ceremony might give her a glimpse of her baby again. 

    The film deals with several important issues including the power of a mother's grief, the place of a woman in mid 1800s Welsh society, the suppression of the Welsh language, and religious suppression by the Anglican Church of the time. 

    As you can see from our first images here, we're making a high-end short that brings the audience into the film with a sense of reality, allowing viewers to feel like the supernatural element of the film could be real. We hope that the film will have a real impact on its audience and leave them wanting more from the story...because we have more of this story to tell.

    But we need to pick up our VFX shots...and we'd love to show you what they might look like but it would definitely ruin the film! However what we will say is that in our story sin-eating is real...and it's terrifying and not what you would expect. So when Jemima pays the price for Thomas's deception, it's both a heartbreaking and horrendous sight for her - and us - to witness.

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    The Sin-Eater has an amazing cast of Welsh and Scottish actors that share four Bafta Cymru awards between them. Carly-Sophia Davies (The Eternal Daughter) is our lead character Jemima. A new young mother who has just lost her baby boy and is tricked into taking on a supernatural burden by 'sin-eater' Thomas, who is played by Bafta Cymru Best Actor winner Jack Parry-Jones (The Crown). Three-times Best Actress Bafta Cymru winner Sharon Morgan (Gangs of London) plays Eliza, the matriarch of the family who will do anything to secure the succession of her family and is suspicious of outsiders like Jemima coming into the family. Eliza's son and Jemima's husband Richard is played by Gareth Jewell (Bang), who is torn between the love for his wife and loyalty towards his mother. Rounding off the cast is Lewis MacKinnon (Young Wallander) who plays the Scottish family priest Samuel, who is fairly new to this small Welsh parish and an outsider, and whilst he wants to help Jemima he knows he must abide by Eliza. 

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    The core team have delivered many short films both for public funders and for TV and features as well. 

    DIRECTOR - KELLY HOLMES

    Kelly is a director with a love for telling genre inspired stories. She has had her films commissioned/broadcast on national French television, screened multiple award-winning shorts internationally at BAFTA/Oscar festivals, and is developing her first horror feature film YEAR OF THE HEART, a menopausal body horror with Sharp House/Gallus Films. She has participated in multiple talent schemes including the Reykjavik Talent Lab; won the JETS Co-Production Market at Berlinale in 2021, and was selected as part of Frontières Co-Production Market 2021. She also loves squirrels.

    You can see the quality of Kelly's films in her showreel:

    WRITER - MATTHEW WHITE

    Matt is an award-winning writer of twisted genre features  and shorts. His feature PAUL DOOD'S DEADLY LUNCH BREAK is available on SKY Movies in the UK and Tubi in the US. In 2021 it won awards across the festival circuit, including best screenplay at SXSW, and best feature, best script and best comedy at Toronto After Dark. Matt's also a published author, has three features in development and has just been selected for BIFA Springboard 2022.

    Watch the trailer for Paul's Dood's Deadly Lunch Break here:

    PRODUCER - DAVID BROWN

    DAVID BROWN is a producer from Scotland, whose films won a Scottish BAFTA in 2017 and three Celtic Media Festival wins from 2017 to 2020. David participated in the Rotterdam Film Festival Talent Lab 2021, Edinburgh Film Festival Talent Lab and won pitches at the Berlinale in both 2020 and 2021 as part of the JETS Co-Production Scheme, and was selected to be part of the Frontières Co-Production Market 2021 with YEAR OF THE HEART. David also recently Line Produced the documentary MY OLD SCHOOL which premiered at Sundance.

    Watch the trailer for My Old School here:

    DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY - ALAN MCLAUGHLIN

    Alan and Kelly have been working together on Kelly's last three films. He won a Bafta New Talent award for Lost Serenity, was nominated for a Camerimage's Cinematography Debut award for Isolani and has recently shot the new Hulu/Disney horror feature Matriarch. 

    Watch the trailer for Matriarch here:

    The rest of our amazing HODs include:

    Anastasia Crossley - Costume Designer

    Bethany Lewis - Makeup Designer

    Emily Brister-Runnacles - Art Director

    Ben Davenport - 1st AD

    John Butterworth - Sound Recordist

    Post Production is taken care of by the wonderful Blazing Griffin

    Elizabeth Clutterbuck - Editor

    Die Hexen - Composer

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    We are incredibly lucky that we have a postproduction deal with the wonderful Blazing Griffin. But there are a few things that this doesn't cover, including our VFX reshoot and the need for a VFX Artist with a specialism in particle effects to give us the supernatural images that Jemima sees at the end of the film. 

    Our budget for the reshoot and the VFX effects is £3,000 and it breaks down as:

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    So what can you do to help?

    If you can donate that's amazing but we appreciate not everyone has the money to be able to do that. But if you can share our project link far and wide and encourage people to have a look then that really does help and it means the world to us.

    We want to ensure this film reaches as wide an audience as possible. To be able to see The Sin-Eater's story and to share Welsh language with as many festival audiences as possible.

    Stretch Goal...£4,000

    If we're lucky enough to reach our goal of £3,000 we'd like to try and extend to £4,000 to cover film festival fees. Film festivals are notoriously expensive for filmmakers to enter and we need every little bit of help we can get. We would like to get The Sin-Eater all over the world!

    Exclusive Limited Poster

    Designed by Ian Cudmore this poster is only available during the crowdfund 

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    Thank you reveal!

    Just want to say THANK YOU to everyone that has donated and shared so far and to reveal our EXCLUSIVE LIMITED A3 poster designed by the awesome Ian Cudmore just for the crowdfund. The poster can be purchased in the Poster and the Bundle perks.

    £3,281.00
    raised of £3,000.00 goal
    Funded
    100 Backers
    Diolch/Thank You

    Thank you so much for supporting us - it means the world to us. So you're gonna get a special shout out on Twitter!

    £5.00
    Script pdf

    You will receive the script pdf for The Sin-Eater to read before being able to see the film! If you'd love to read Matthew White's beautiful script then this is for you. You might also learn some Welsh through the translations.

    £10.00
    Behind The Scenes & Script

    As well as being able to read the script in advance, you'll get access to a selection of our Behind The Scenes pictures of the shoot photographed by the lovely Vic Butt on a digital link. All pictures taken at the beautiful Greenfield Valley Heritage Park.

    £15.00
    Postcard

    As well as being sent our script via pdf you'll also be posted a beautiful limited edition A5 version of The Sin-Eater teaser postcard to keep. You can see that teaser postcard image at the top of our campaign of Jemima in the graveyard kneeling before the grave. Please provide address for postage.

    (17 remaining out of 25)
    £20.00
    Short Film Link

    You'll be sent the script pdf in advance and you get to watch The Sin-Eater before it's even out in film festivals on a special online link. This will not be downloadable, but you can watch the film as many times as you like!

    £30.00
    Poster - UK ONLY

    As well as getting a link to see the film in advance, you also get a beautiful limited edition A3 printed poster of The Sin-Eater posted to you. This is not the same as the teaser postcard and will be revealed as part of our crowdfund campaign. And because postproduction crew names are still being added, delivery is expected early Summer 2023. Please provide address for postage. UK postage only.

    (13 remaining out of 15)
    £50.00
    Sin Eating Props - SECRET REWARD! UK ONLY

    An antique 'sin-eating' kit! You will receive both a link to the final film and you can take home actual antique props purchased for the film and seen on screen. The real sin-eating ceremony involved drinking beer and here we have the antique Victorian green beer bottle and pewter tankard seen in the film. If you look closely you'll see the bottle is from Wales and bares the name 'Thomas', the character name or our 'sin-eater'. You'll also receive digital screen grabs of the props being used in the film. So if you'd like to practice eating sins then this is a great starter kit! Please provide

    (1 remaining out of 1)
    £50.00
    Religious Props - SECRET REWARD! UK ONLY

    You will receive both a link to the final film and you can take home actual antique props purchased for the film and seen on screen. This includes the beautiful maroon personal bible of the character Samuel (played by Lewis MacKinnon), published around 1846 according to the inscription inside. You'll also receive the wooden cross that is prominently seen throughout the parlour scenes on the wall. In addition you'll also receive digital screen grabs of the props being used in the film. Please provide address for delivery. UK only.

    (0 remaining out of 1)
    £50.00
    Mentored

    This perk includes the link to the film in advance AND having a 1 hour mentoring session with either director Kelly Holmes OR writer Matt White. Please let us know if you'd prefer a director mentoring session OR a writing mentoring session AND if there's any specific topics you'd like to cover. Both Kelly and Matt have been university lecturers and Kelly often mentors for BFI NETWORK.

    (5 remaining out of 10)
    £75.00
    Bundle - UK ONLY

    You get a whole bundle of stuff! The script pdf and BTS photos. The postcard and poster delivered to you. A special thanks credit on the film itself. AND the digital link of the film sent to you before film festivals. If you wanted it all then this is the one for you! UK only for postage of poster.

    £100.00
    Baby Coffin Prop - SECRET REWARD!! UK ONLY

    You will receive an invitation to the cast and crew screening (no travel or accommodation). And you will also receive the main prop from the film, the coffin that baby Benjamin is in. This is a HANDMADE item made by the film's director from wood and has been lined with silk/satin with a lace edge - was expensive and time consuming to make! The coffin has a glass window in the lid. So if you're of a macabre nature and you'd like this prop then please pledge! We'll also throw in a few real life Victorian coffin nails! UK ONLY.

    (1 remaining out of 1)
    £300.00