Watch our brilliant film about This Can Happen, and read ahead to find out about the day we spent filming with the talented ladies of Mini Productions.
April Kelley and Sara Huxley were students at drama school. When the teacher asked ‘What will you do to support your acting career that’s not soul destroying?’ April replied that she wanted to set up a production company. ‘Be realistic,’ said the teacher.
She registered her company, Mini Productions, 2 weeks later.
Determined and ambitious, the pair decided to exploit their compatibility and shared dreams and went into partnership 4 years ago. They began by making short films, trying to raise funding and support through the subjects and themes of the films themselves. To give back to their funders they created additional assets to support the world around the films, which doubled up as interviews, behind-the-scenes coverage and full social media campaigns.
The company continued to grow and April and Sara branched into music videos, charity videos, large scale event production and had many viral successes with their online content which has currently amassed over 42 million views worldwide. The move into corporate films was the logical step, alongside their work in feature films and TV. The Mini Productions team takes enormous pride in their corporate branding work. They find it invigorating to turn something pretty standard into a piece of film that’s full of life and creativity.
When Sara got the call from Zoe at This Can Happen, she jumped at the chance to make a film for this pioneering event. April and Sara had been following and working with Jonny and Neil for some time, and interviewed them for their positive media platform Acting On A Dream, so it was very exciting to be finally working with them again and supporting such a ground-breaking conference. It wasn’t difficult to put a strategy in place for the interviewees. TCH is a space for people to talk and that’s exactly how they conducted the interviews. Working from Zoe’s list of diverse and interesting figures to interview, the film-makers had to come up with questions that would encourage their subjects to say exciting things, offer off-hand lines and come up with lovely moments – easy, right?
Rebecca the psychologist was their first interviewee. She was graceful, radiant and colourful. A truly inspirational lady, her words played a huge part in getting the TCH message across to audiences. Sara felt that the TCH team was executing the conference to such a high level, entailing high expectations of their interviews in order to do the thought-leaders justice, that they had to ensure they got Rebecca to really demonstrate the extent of her knowledge. And she did.
John at Bright Horizons tried to learn his lines in advance but when Sara interviewed him she went off-script, not to catch him out but to bring some spontaneity to the film. She likes to go off-script but she’s also an expert at putting her subjects at ease when the camera is in their face! John laughed when she suggested putting down the paper but eventually came up with some great comments and the interview became filled with a completely natural energy.
Karen Seward from Allen & Overy had many words of wisdom to impart and we must not forgot the incredible launch party that Allen & Overy hosted, where the This Can Happen video was first shown to a live audience.
Danie Du Plessis from GSK was the first of the sponsors to be interviewed and was incredibly passionate about the topic and conference which really drove the energy and excitement for the rest of the day’s filming.
Before Sally Boyle from Goldman Sachs had arrived to be interviewed, all of her staff members said how amazing she was not only to work for, but in how she has pioneered the improvement of support for mental health in their workplace. Just doing these interviews was enough to prove that the industry is changing, people are beginning to listen and more importantly words are being put into action.
Jonny and Neil’s enthusiasm and passion is infectious. They couldn’t have put TCH together without Zoe and she couldn’t have done it without them. This brilliant example of teamwork offered a unique opportunity to glean magical insights into their motivation for TCH.
Talking about TCH with Jonny and Neil and then discussing it with Zoe is a wholly different experience as they bring different skill-sets and experience to the table. But it all comes together wonderfully. Their vision is united. That was what Sara captured on camera and what made this video so special. The energy and drive of all involved in the video is a small insight into the team and community supporting the This Can Happen conference in November.
Sara and April want to take this opportunity to tell you that they were honoured to meet the This Can Happen team and sponsors, and to be part of such a revolutionary and much needed movement. They know that together we can all change the landscape of mental health, and it starts with the This Can Happen conference.