SEA WALL  A Week in the Life of a Short Film

1 October 2020

''a quietly gorgeous little film that feels like a gift from the past arriving exactly on time”

Laura Collins-Hughes, New York Times May 15, 2020

“During Covid, for obvious reasons, monologue has become the default position for online drama. It has always carried possibilities of disruption…Sea Wall is rare in carrying within it a world as well as a voice.” ****

Susannah Clapp, The Guardian June 7, 2020

Our short film “Sea Wall” was the result of a collaboration between our MD, Andy Porter, Tony and Olivier winning writer Simon Stephens and Simon’s friend and creative collaborator, the actor Andrew Scott. 

Sea Wall is the most human of films with a special resonance in Lockdown. One man, isolated in a single space, talking to a lens. With its central themes of loss, love, doubt and hope the film speaks for our time as Alex, the sole protagonist, speaks very directly to you.

The film was originally a play, a monologue written by Simon for Andrew and since we made it he has reprised the role at both the National Theatre and the Old Vic. The film of Sea Wall is a work of art in its own right, both profound and uncannily prescient.

The production itself involved social distancing, as to help him feel alone in the studio Andrew requested that the crew were hidden from view, so uniquely we filmed from behind a screen, with only the camera lens visible to him. 

We re-released Sea Wall for free on Monday May 11, initially for just a week on YouTube.

Andrew and Simon filmed personal messages and we used Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to let the world know. In the week that followed, Sea Wall was discussed on BBC Radio 4’s the World at One, featured in Time Out’s essential online listings both in London and New York and received a glowing review from the New York Times. The film’s Producer, Andy Porter was contacted by the Evening Standard, Metro and one of Japan’s biggest entertainment magazines for publicity stills. 100,000 people clicked the link and watched the film for free on YouTube.

Most importantly, 99% of the people who watched it were both moved by and loved the film. Andrew Scott’s performance resonated with their own experiences of grief and isolation.

We extended the free streaming event by a week and, by May 25, had reached over a quarter of a million views.

On the surface and by all measures of filmmaking it is the simplest of productions and its creation was the result of a series of happy accidents. But its impact continues to be powerful and lasting. It’s something we feel proud to have played a part in and privileged to have had the opportunity to work with two artists whose love for what they do is woven into every syllable and every frame. You can find out more and download the film here:

“At a time when everyone in the country is experiencing some kind of loss, some more intensely than others, this unadorned, emotionally raw exploration of bereavement feels as if it speaks directly to us, to each and every personal loss…
Sea Wall makes the everyday epic. It doesn’t shirk the clumsiness of emergency and the gaucherie of grief”

Lyn Gardner, the Stage Door

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