A fishy custom silicone mask request
In the deepest, darkest depths of 2021's lockdown, my day was brightened by a request from Director and Writer Marc Coleman of Double Dinner Films to make the lead character's creature mask for his debut comedy horror feature film, ManFish.
The brief was a humanoid sea creature who would wash up on shore, with the production being filmed locally in Essex at Canvey Island, the Isle of Sheppey in Kent and in the London Borough of Redbridge. Covid restrictions were lifting imminently so I had a really tight timeline to take the concept art in 2D, turn it into a 3D sculpture and then mould, cast and paint the silicone mask ready for the first day of filming. You can sneak a peek of the finished mask in the movie poster below and see the trailer and mask reveal in our latest blog post.
A welcome addition to British comedy horror
ManFish stars award winning actors Dean Kilbey (EastEnders, All the Money in the World, Charlotte: The Movie) and Jon Campling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, the Northman, Kingsglaive: Final Fantasty XV), the brilliant Emma Stannard (The Hobbyhorser, Rhyme Time Town) and the fishtastic Matty Noble (The Amelia Gething Complex, Entourage: A modern fairy tail, of sorts) as ManFish.
The film's professional finish completely belies its low budget movie status. This welcome addition to British comedy horror continues Marc's previous run of successes. He won an Empire award in 2016 for a short film that he made for £20, and in 2017 won multiple awards around the world as well as being a finalist in the Best Comedy category at the BAFTA qualifying Carmarthen Bay Film Festival for a short comedy called The Flytipper (distributed by the legendary schlock horror company Troma).
ManFish panel talk
Here's me, Director Marc, lead actor Dean Kilbey and James (Jim) Walker (Production Design, Props and SFX) talking about how the film came to life at a panel talk at Romford Horror Festival:
I had a blast with the sculpt and I will blog about how we brought ManFish to life once I can officially unveil him and make the licensed ManFish mask available for sale through our shop.
ManFish the movie premieres and becomes an award winner
ManFish had its world premiere at Horror on Sea in January 2022 and was greeted with a fantastic reception. In the lead up to its second screening, at Romford Horror International Film Festival, the jury announced the film was up for five awards including best lead actor and best cinematography. The cast and crew were absolutely thrilled to end up winning the big one - best feature film - and also best local film. The movie screened to a sell out crowd and in fact was the only one out of 70 shown over 3 days that sold out all of its tickets. We had a fantastic time at both festivals and highly recommend both.
Interview with Marc Coleman, ManFish Director and Writer
After ManFish screened at the Romford Horror Film Festival, I did a short interview with Marc about the film. I put this together in a short film about the festival:
Marc is now busy securing a distribution deal for ManFish and I'll update this blog again as soon as the film is available to buy. Thanks again to Marc for commissioning Mind Magic Studios to make the ManFish silicone mask. The film was an absolute pleasure to work on and I look forward to our future projects together.