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Creative

Colour and Craft Take Centre Stage for Childline’s New Short

The film is written and directed by 3angrymen's Thom Wood

Colour and Craft Take Centre Stage for Childline’s New Short

A new short film commissioned by the NSPCC sees the remake of one of Childline’s key content videos, a short depicting the experience behind contacting the service.

Directed and written by Thom Wood for 3angrymen Productions, the bright and breezy table-top short features the illustration, styling and paper-craft of design talent Hattie Newman (Blink Art). NSPCC Producer Louis Haywood: “It’s rare that the Film Team get a chance to revisit a piece of content and bring it up to date but this one’s earned

NSPCC Producer Louis Haywood said: “It’s rare that the Film Team get a chance to revisit a piece of content and bring it up to date but this one’s earned its place so wasn’t a difficult sell to the service. Its beautiful simplicity has made it popular with so many audiences in the UK as well as with partner agencies across the world. One of the biggest challenges was was to sharpen it up without losing its charm. Another excellent collaboration with 3angrymen and the talented Hattie Newman.” The film tells the story of one young boy’s journey, from not knowing who to talk to, through to working out his issue and coming up with a plan with his counsellor. Everything is illustrated using paper-crafted props, operated by the protagonist’s hands, using anything that he might find in his school rucksack as a visual aid. Thom Wood explains “It’s all about telling the story in a way that the Childline audience wasn’t expecting, to be constantly inventive visually. So while everything on the desk will be familiar, the way that each device is interacted with provides a pleasant little surprise. At the same time, the tone needed to be just so, we wanted this to be about one young person relaying their experience to another and not an adult explaining.”

The film tells the story of one young boy’s journey, from not knowing who to talk to, through to working out his issue and coming up with a plan with his counsellor. Everything is illustrated using paper-crafted props, operated by the protagonist’s hands, using anything that he might find in his school rucksack as a visual aid. Thom Wood explains “It’s all about telling the story in a way that the Childline audience wasn’t expecting, to be constantly inventive visually. So while everything on the desk will be familiar, the way that each device is interacted with provides a pleasant little surprise. At the same time, the tone needed to be just so, we wanted this to be about one young person relaying their experience to another and not an adult explaining.”

Thom Wood explains “It’s all about telling the story in a way that the Childline audience wasn’t expecting, to be constantly inventive visually. So while everything on the desk will be familiar, the way that each device is interacted with provides a pleasant little surprise. At the same time, the tone needed to be just so, we wanted this to be about one young person relaying their experience to another and not an adult explaining.”

Thom and Hattie had previously worked with the NSPCC to produce the film back in 2010 and it has since been seen by hundreds of thousands of school children as part of the Childline Schools Service, as well as online.

“When the NSPCC asked us if we’d be interested in updating the film, we jumped at the chance, there was so much stuff we wanted to do differently, to make better. First time around we were so pushed for time, we never quite got the finish we were aiming for.”

“This time we really wanted to brighten everything up, clean up the whole look so that Hattie’s beautifully made props could properly pop. At the same time, Childline had gone through a complete rebrand and elements of the Childline service had changed, so we did a fair amount of rewriting, scrapping concepts that felt old and injecting a load of new ones that we thought would be fun.”

Production lasted several weeks, beginning with concept design, followed by a prop build and test phase, before a two-day shoot at Hackney Downs' Studios, London.

Advertiser

Producer: Louis Haywood

Brand: Childline

Advertiser: NSPCC

Production Company

Production Manager: Arianna Meschia

Illustrator: Hattie Newman

Camera Operator: Ruth Sewell

Producer: Guy Saville

DOP: Tom Wright

Director: Thom Wood

Category: Charity , Corporate and social

Genre: Illustration , People , Storytelling , Tabletop