Carsten Hayes and Annalie Wilson
Filming where we weren’t supposed to be
Su Elliott
When you date on the Internet, you take your life in your hands.

UK, 2008. Pathétique Films.
Produced by David McGillivray.
Directed by Keith Claxton.
Written by Richard Parker.
ph: Godfrey Kirby. steadicam op: Tim Higham. sd. rec: Emanuele Costantini. ed: Chuck Cartmel. music: Dominic Glynn, sp. fx make-up: Stephen Webster, Jack Kirby. make-up: Florence Carter. prod. designer: Tricia Hitchcock. asst. dirs: Gary White, Joseph Brett.  cast: Carsten Hayes (Greg), Annalie Wilson (Olivia), Su Elliott (Audrey), Iain Stirland (Harvey), Peter Benedict (1st Surgeon), Maddy Sparham (2nd Surgeon).  Colour. 16 mins. Shot in Islington, London, Aug 6-10, 2008.
“I was sent this script by Richard Parker, who I think has done mostly comedy in the past. I’ve seen sketches he’s written for Hale and Pace. I loved the script of Nobody Speak and I said, ‘Let’s do it,’ straight away. It was set up pretty fast, like Child Number Four. It just fell into place. While I was reading the script I saw Carsten Hayes as Greg. I was in a play with him in 2001, when I also met Eduardo Barreto and Anthony Wise. Su Elliott, who I’ve known since my fringe theatre days, had to be Audrey. The actress I wanted for Olivia got ill. But David Brett recommended Annalie Wilson and she was perfect. The only potential problem was the apartment. Very few people are happy about lending their homes to film makers.  My friend Maddy Sparham, who used to be in the brilliant comedy duo Men in Coats, told me about  his partner’s flat, which she also designed. I went to her birthday party, and the flat was fantastic. It’s been used for lots of other shoots. I said, ‘Can I film here for nothing?’ expecting her to say, ‘You’re joking.’ But she said yes.

The first day’s shoot was supposed to be at Paddington station. But we lost it the night before. There was nothing for it but to go to St Pancras, near my house, and grab scenes without permission. I thought we’d be told to move on after 15 minutes maximum. But we stayed there for hours with security guys and even police just watching us and then walking on. It was an omen. The rest of the shoot was a dream, so easy. I couldn’t wait to make the next one, Greensleeves.”

For reasons I never fully understood this film was in post-production for nearly four years. It was cut and re-cut. The dubbing took ages to sort out and Carsten and Annalie were dragged back to re-voice bits of dialogue. The title was changed to Sleep Tight. I saw a final cut in 2012. But as yet there are no plans for a premiere.”

It’s not likely you'll work out what is going on