Official Selection 2013 / Nominated for Best Student Film
Set against the backdrop of war-torn 1940s London, Stanley (Ben Walker, the Golden Compass), a homeless boy, discovers how far he must go to survive in a hostile world. But just how far will he go? After getting caught by a merciless Police Officer stealing food from a bombed house – in a time when looting could mean the death penalty, Stanley is forced to make a gut wrenching decision that will affect the rest of his life.
Director: Miguel Santana
Producer: Miguel Santana
Writer: Miguel Santana
Key cast and other crew:
Stanley – Ben Walker
Officer Bradford – Clive Willbond-Hill
Present Day Stanley – Jeffrey Lipman Snr
Cinematographer – Oliver Kember
‘Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to learn a bit about my film! My name is Miguel Santana, I’m on my last year at the University of Hertfordshire where I’m studying a degree in Visual Effects. Last year I won the UH Animation Grand Prix for my short film Mephisto, which was a huge confidence boost, and pushed me to strive for something even bigger and better this year. Still Falls the Rain is that ‘something’.
I’ve put my heart and soul into this project, and I hope you enjoy following its progress as much as I’m enjoying bringing it to life.’
‘The film is being produced as my degree film at the University of Hertfordshire. My degree is in Visual Effects, rather than a straight Film course, so I needed to create a piece with plenty of room for VFX. However, I didn’t like the idea of creating a film around the visual effects, but felt much more attracted to the idea of creating a great story that merely needed some Visual Effects to help it come to life.
I finally landed on the concept of bringing 1940s London back to life, something you seldom see in film and TV (or at least far less often than Victorian or post-war London).
Just a few weeks after completing my previous short film Mephisto, I began writing Still Falls the Rain. I spent most of the summer of 2011 researching and developing the best 4 page screenplay that I could, with the aid of Richard Jobson (New Town Killers) and Erik Bork (Band of Brothers) in particular, who consulted the story on a few occasions, pointing me in the right direction whenever I got stuck.
I knew this was not going to be a cheap project to shoot, so I saved up almost all of my cash from working at places like MPC and RSA Films, putting 90% of wages back into a ‘budget’ pot, whilst at the same time, spending every last minute of free time preparing arrangements for the shoot. This included equipment hire, casting, costume, location recces, permits, crewing up, and a multitude of other production tasks.
I hope these few paragraphs have broadly covered the pre-production stages of the film, but you can head on over to the main blog to read more specific accounts of certain tasks, from pre-production to the finished thing!’
See how the VFX of the film were put together:
And a behind the scenes featurette:
“A poignant story, beautifully told.” – Sarah Godfrey
“Very assured and ambitious filmmaking… very impressive.” – Steve Furst