Tag: actors

Private Preview Screening of Erik Knudsen’s Cleft Lip

Keith French, Janet Knudsen, Erik Knudsen, Reece Douglas and Miranda Benjamin

Keith French, Janet Knudsen, Erik Knudsen, Reece Douglas and Miranda Benjamin at the cast and crew preview screening of Cleft Lip at the Vue Cinema, Salford Quays.

On the 11th November 2017, we were able to show the completed feature film by Erik Knudsen, Cleft Lip, to cast, crew and a few friends. The film stars Reece Douglas, supported by Miranda Benjamin and Keith French. Sponsored by Leica Store Manchester, the screening took place at the Vue Cinema at Salford Quays, Manchester. We were so excited to have the members of the team watch the film for the first time and reactions were overwhelming. The film looked and sounded great on the big screen, and for many of the cast this was the first time they had seen themselves on a big cinema screen. The screening was followed by a wine reception.

The film is now being entered into prominent festivals around the world and we expect a host of screenings at some of these festivals during the first 7 or 8 months during 2018, before the film is then released later in the year. More news on this later.

Erik Knudsen’s Feature Film Cleft Lip Now In Production

Principal photography of Erik Knudsen’s new feature film, Cleft Lip, starring Reece Douglas and co starring Miranda Benjamin and Keith French, started on the 13th January 2017.

Shooting is going very well and is on schedule. To keep up with developments, visit our Facebook page or Twitter.

Miranda benjamin prepares for a take during the shooting of Erik Knudsen's film Cleft Lip.Miranda Benjamin and Reece Douglas wait for their shot during shooting of Erik Knudsen's film Cleft Lip.

Reece Douglas and Miranda Benjamin surrounded by crew as they wait to do a take during shooting of Erik Knudsen's film Cleft Lip.Reece getting ready for bedroom shot

Erik Knudsen giving Reece Douglas direction during the shooting of his film Cleft LipMiranda Benjamin and Reece Douglas listening to Erik Knudsen during shooting of Cleft Lip

Production designer Meriel Pym takes a break during shooting of Erik Knudsen's film Cleft Lip. Mark Duggan explains a shot to Erik Knudsen during the shooting of his film Cleft Lip.

Erik Knudsen giving direction to Nenaa-Jo Uraih during the shooting of his film Cleft Lip.Erik Knudsen and Reece Douglas listening to a run through on set during shooting of Cleft Lip.


Sound recordist Karen Lauke takes notes during shooting of Erik Knudsen's film Cleft LipKeith French trying on a suit for his role in Erik Knudsen's film Cleft Lip.

Cleft Lip Production Team Meet For First Production Meeting

Stars and production team for Erik Knudsen's forthcoming feature film, Cleft Lip.

L to R Karen Lauke (sound), Mark Duggan (Assistant Director/cinematography), Shemin B Nair (Production Assistant), Erik Knudsen (producer, writer and director), Miranda Benjamin (actress), Stuart Samuels (special effects), Reece Douglas (actor), Kane Rattray (Sales and Marketing), Keith French (actor), Richard Mulhearn (stills photographer), Janet Knudsen (producer) and Meriel Pym (Production Designer).

Erik Knudsen and Janet Knudsen were pleased to be able to host the first Cleft Lip production meeting. The stars of the film had an opportunity to meet the key production team and visa versa. It was a whole day’s meeting, which started with general introductions where people were able to share past experiences. Erik Knudsen then held a screening session where he showed clips of films from filmmakers who have influenced his approach to filmmaking. Inevitably, they included extracts from films by Ozu (Equinox Flower), Dreyer (Gertrud), Bresson (L’Argent) and Tarkovsky (Mirror). It is fair to say that the cast in particular were not familiar with these filmmakers and it offered Erik Knudsen a chance to contextualise and discuss intentions for Cleft Lip.

This section was then followed by a leisurely lunch where Kane Rattray led a discussion about how the project is using social media as a first stage of a distribution strategy. Cast and crew, of course, will be central to participating in the promotion of the project even before the film starts shooting. The team also discussed how the project will be documented as a creative process.

Actors left after lunch and the afternoon was devoted to a scene by scene discussion of key creative, technical and logistical challenges. A rough schedule was also put in place.

On the basis of this most productive day, everyone in the team now has a clear idea of what needs doing and by whom and we can now go away and start work in earnest on pre-production creative, technical and logistical preparations.

As Gagarin said: ‘let’s go!’

Keith French Joins Cast for Erik Knudsen’s New Film, Cleft Lip

Keith French to appear in Erik Knudsen's forthcoming feature film, Cleft Lip.

We’re very pleased to confirm that Keith French is to join the cast for Erik Knudsen’s forthcoming feature film, Cleft Lip. Keith has a wealth of experience as an actor in corporate and commercials, as well as considerable stage and entertainment experience, and is venturing into a first feature film. He joins Miranda Benjamin and Reece Douglas and a range of other actors. More on Keith and his involvement to follow.

Reece Douglas and Miranda Benjamin to play leading roles in Erik Knudsen’s Cleft Lip

We have been busy casting for Erik Knudsen’s latest feature film, Cleft Lip, which goes into principal photography in January 2017. Though the casting process for the 43 parts in the film is ongoing, we are pleased to announce that Reece Douglas and Miranda Benjamin will be starring in Cleft Lip.

Reece Douglas to play Campbell in Erik Knudsen's Cleft Lip

Reece Douglas to play Campbell in Erik Knudsen’s film, Cleft Lip.

Reece Douglas is to play the leading role, Campbell. He is an actor based in Manchester, who is best known for his role as Denzil Kelly in the school drama, Waterloo Road, from 2009 until he was killed off in 2012. He has been acting and performing since the age of 12. Acting is his passion but in his free time, Reece enjoys a variety of sports.

Miranda benjamin to play Jaz in Erik Knudsen's film, Cleft Lip.

Miranda benjamin to play Jaz in Erik Knudsen’s film, Cleft Lip.

Miranda Benjamin is to play the leading support role, Jaz. She is an accomplished actress, dancer and singer. She has numerous credits to her name for both stage and screen, including Til Death Do Us Part. Miranda trained at the Salford School of Music, Media and Performing Arts. She enjoys sports and cocktail flairing!

We’re excited to have Reece and Miranda onboard. Attaching the actual actors to the project starts to bring the screenplay alive and we look forward to the presence that both Miranda and Reece undoubtedly will bring to the story of Cleft Lip.

Casting Call for Erik Knudsen’s Next Feature film: Cleft Lip

Since the release of the award winning feature film, The Raven On The Jetty, in 2015, Erik Knudsen has been working on a number of projects: his short iPhone documentary, In Waiting; writing and executive producing Mark Duggan’s The Rabbit; and working on his photographic/film project, Doubt, which is still in production and due for release later in 2016. In addition to these projects, he has also started work on a new fiction feature film project, Cleft Lip, which now has a screenplay sufficiently developed to start the casting process.

Front page of Erik Knudsen's screenplay Cleft Lip


Cleft Lip is an emotionally evocative urban tragedy set in the very near future. It is the story of a supreme sacrifice only love can offer, set in the context of a fractured society increasingly challenged by consequences brought about by the commodification of fertility.

We are currently casting the leading parts in the film and are interested to hear from anyone who feels that they may fit the key characteristics we are looking for. In line with Erik Knudsen’s philosophy around casting, we are not looking for performers, but people. People who have the potential to bring the presence of their being to the screen, whose natural personality and looks have the potential to bring the character alive or allow us to build a character from their real personality. Sometimes we don’t quite know what we want until we see the person in front of us and it suddenly becomes immediately apparent. Sometimes we are surprised and change direction because of the presence of a person we meet. We are therefore interested in both professional and non-professional actors and would like to meet a number of people as part of the process of discovering characters for the film.

We are initially looking for the lead actor:

  • Mixed Race Man between 25 and 30 years old. He should preferably be a mix of Black African/Caribbean heritage and White European. This person will play the leading part in the film.

Once we have cast the leading actor in the film, we will then put out calls for further parts. It is anticipated that shooting will commence in late 2016 or early 2017. Shooting will primarily take place in the North West of England and the film will be made on a very low budget.

For anyone interested, please contact Janet at casting@onedayfilms.com with brief CV and a single photograph.

The Raven On The Jetty Vlogs 17 & 18: Shooting Continues

Sound is a very important part of The Raven On The Jetty, hence the importance of having the sonic artist, Amanda Belantara, as our sound recordist. During shooting, not only did Amanda record any dialogue and direct action sounds, she also took the opportunity to record an array of ambient sounds with a number of unusual microphones. These recordings will be used to build subtle and evocative soundscape for the film.

Even actors got used to the fact that they often would have to do extra takes just for the sound and an awareness of the role of sound became natural.

In the following Vlog 17, there is further documentation of the process of shooting The Raven On The Jetty, including footage of sound being recorded and some of the actors reflections on how the shoot was progressing.

One of the final days of shooting involved spending a day shooting on Morecambe peer. Set against the flat mud banks of low tide, we were able to shoot an intimate scene between our main character, Tom (Connor O’Hara), and his mother (Helen Teasdale). Vlog 18 gives a brief glimpse into the shooting on that day.

More to come…

Principal Photography of The Raven On The Jetty Completed!

We have just completed the principal photography for The Raven On The Jetty.

Thomas Enters Hos room at his Father's Farm in The Raven On The Jetty

An extraordinary experience! We were blessed with good fortune and the contributions of all those who have helped us in Cumbria has been incredible. The cast and crew were brilliant. We all more or less lived together for two weeks and the working days were long and relentless. Despite this, the working atmosphere was great and in my experience of shooting, this has been one of the most enjoyable experiences. The cast and the production team really pulled together and we all willed the project to progress as painlessly as possible.

The Cast and Crew on The Raven On The Jetty

Mark Duggan Alex Gilbert Taddeus Walsh celebrate with Connor O'Hara

Just one week prior to shooting, Britain was covered in a thick layer of snow. I was starting to worry. However, when we arrived the day before shooting was to commence in the hills around Penrith, where most of the shooting was to take place, to our pleasant surprise much of the snow had disappeared. The remaining snow was just right to suggest the end of winter and the beginning of spring. I couldn’t believe it, but what followed was two weeks of not a single drop of rain. Unprecedented, apparently. But it was cold. The Helm wind, particularly on the farm where we were filming, Threaplands, tested the resilience of even the hardiest amongst us and we pushed on.

Taddeus Walsh tries his best to keep Connor O'Hara warm on The Raven On The Jetty shoot

Part of crew during shooting of The Raven On The Jetty

Our actors, in particular, suffered bravely, not least our young star, Connor O’Hara. It was absolutely incredible how he took on the challenge of our relentless schedule and the bitter cold on the hill tops. Unfortunately, the Farmer who owns the land reported to me that he had lost 3 times as many lambs as he normally would, all due to the relentlessly cold weather. While we were busy filming, they were busy trying to save as many lambs as possible.

It was a long hard winter for the sheep and lambs

Nevertheless, the weather for such sequences, for example, as the jetty on the lake was perfect. Though we had scheduled all the key outdoor scenes in the first week, in case we needed to move the schedule around to cope with any weather problems, we were able to follow our schedule more or less as planned.

Helen Teasdale and Connor O'Hara rehearse Rob O'Hara and Connor O'Hara rehearse

Connor O'Hara talks to raven

Over 250 camera setups and additional sound setups later, we have almost all the footage in ‘the can’. And it’s looking great (though I’m always a little nervous at this point about whether it’s all going to cut together and the story is going to work…) I now look forward to the editing and post production stages of the project knowing that I have some beautiful performances set in an evocative context and landscape. The visual imagery we were able to get has proved great and I now hope that some of the creative risks I have taken with the project are going to pay off. Apart from Mark Duggan and Amanda Belantara, I will now be starting work with a new set of artists involved in the project and I’m looking very much forward to this.

Setting up a car shot in Erik Knudsen's The Raven On The Jetty Mark Duggan and Erik Knudsen discuss a short

Sound Crew records a take with Connor O'Hara

Erik Knudsen explains and action to Connor O'Hara Connor O'Hara rehearses a shot

Erik Knudsen looks at storyboard on location

However, when I went back to our jetty locations yesterday to check we had left it as we found it, I was filled with a sadness. Just one week earlier, the location was absolutely abuzz with the production team, cast and raven handler working through the scenes in the context of a beautiful day. Now the location was forlorn, the snow on the hills in the background had completely gone, it was raining and the rough waters of Ullswater were starting to floor the jetty. Fortune shone on us and we move on to make what I hope will be a film the cast and crew, at the very least, will be proud of.

Soon there will be a new VLOG about the shoot, but in the meantime enjoy some of the photographs our resident photographer, Richard Mulhearn, took on the shoot.


Connor O'Hara has fun playing between takes

Connor O'Hara Entertains Himself

Erik Knudsen congratulates Connor O'Hara



Two New Actors for The Raven On The Jetty Announced

We are very pleased to have cast the remaining characters in the film, The Raven On The Jetty.

Anne Fraser

Anne Fraser will be playing the part of Thomas’s maternal Greandmother in The Raven On The Jetty. A keen amateur actress, Anne has been an active member of the Ambleside Players for over 16 years. Not only has she performed in roles such as Lady Delia in Habeas Corpus, she has written four mini dramas for the players which have also been performed. Educated in Glasgow and Wimbledon, Anne has had a varied career and has now retired and lives in Ambleside with her husband.

Anne Lees

Anne Lees has been a life model for around 7 years. In her role as a life model, she has worked with many different circumstances, including modelling for various groups, schools and private artists. She is French and has lived in the UK for over 20 years, in particular in the Lake District, in which she loves walking and hiking. In addition to her work as a life model, Anne runs a small bookshop in Kendal. Anne is appearing in The Raven On The Jetty, playing a woman who has a special relationship with the leading character, Thomas’s, father.

Anne Lees and Anne Fraser join the rest of the key cast, Connor O’Hara, Rob O’Hara and Helen Teasdale to form what is going to be a fantastic cast and we are looking very much forward to working with them. We move into our location accommodation on the 30 March!

Leading Actors for The Raven On The Jetty Announounced

Happy New Year! We have had a busy December working on casting for the key roles in our forthcoming film, The Raven On The Jetty, and are very excited about the year to come. On the 15th and 16th of December 2012, following a tremendous response to our casting call, we held auditions for the leading boy, Thomas, in the film as well as for his Father and Mother at the Rheged Centre in Penrith. Following a review of the screen tests, and extensive discussions, we are very pleased to be able to welcome three actors to our project. We are looking very much forward to working with them. Here is a brief introduction to our three leading actors:


Connor O’Hara to play ‘Thomas’

 Connor O'Hara

Connor O’Hara is 10 years old and has taken part in a number of community theatre productions since his first performance as Tiny Tim at the age of six. He also sings and plays the trumpet and has, over the past 4 years, participated in the South Cumbria Music Festival. He has won awards at this festival for reading, acting, singing and playing the piano. As a keen performer, Connor has also appeared in all of his school’s end of year productions. Despite his tender age, Connor has appeared in numerous musicals, including Scrooge, Fame Academy, The King and I,  Camelot and Annie, as well as in the play, Brassed Off.

Robert O’Hara to play ‘Thomas’s Father’

Rob O'Hara

Robert O’Hara has been involved in Community theatre for over 40 years. He has performed in Birmingham, Saudi Arabia, France, the United States and Ulverston, where he now lives. He has performed in a string of dramatic and comedic plays, including A Doll’s House, Abigail’s Party, Blood Brothers and Fawlty Towers. He is also a singer, having performed in numerous musicals, including Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Fiddler on the Roof, Guys and Dolls, Jesus Christ Superstar and The Wizard of Oz. A former secondary school maths teacher, Robert now runs a guest house and music venue, Sefton House, in Ulverston.

Helen Teasdale to play ‘Thomas’s Mother’


Helen Teasdale first started acting at the age of 7 and developed a love for performing during her school years. This led to leading youth performances at prestigious theatres such as the West Yorkshire Playhouse in Leeds, and, as a member of the amateur theatre group, The Potato Room Players, at the City Varieties Music Hall, also in Leeds. Helen studied Music at the City Of Leeds College of Music and then went on to study at the University College of St Martins, Lancaster, where she obtained a BA Hons in Performing Arts. After her studies, she moved to Carlisle and worked as part of the show team at Center Parcs in Penrith, followed by leading roles with the Carlisle Musical Society, including The Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, and Me & My Girl. She now runs her own business, Music Makers, which provides weekly music workshops for the under 5’s and more recently she joined the Stagecoach team in Carlisle as a vocal coach.