Approaching Shadows is the second feature from the charity TAPE Community Music and Film, a story of undying love and the acceptance of death told through the vehicle of a road-side horror. During their golden anniversary getaway, Edward and Violet Knights are brutally separated, triggering the wife’s frantic and furious pursuit of her abducted husband.
The world in which she now finds herself is foreboding and filled with unease. Horror writer-director Mick Garris has said: “The movie’s sense of dread creeps up on you like, well, approaching shadows that wrap around you in a nightmare.”
TAPE are pioneers in the realm of inclusive film production. From pre-production to poster, every step of the process is supportive and people-centred. Their ethos allows young people, disabled people and those who thought it might be impossible for ‘someone like me’ to work in this industry and offer opportunities to develop as a filmmaker. Their partnership with BFI Film Academy allows TAPE to generate a creative and inclusive space in which young people can have their first feature filmmaking experience.
Serena Evans, who plays Violet Knights, told us: “It was such a huge privilege to be a part of Approaching Shadows and, right from the start, to feel part of an all-inclusive, and wonderfully diverse team. All my working life, as a professional actress, I have worked with the pressure of money-fuelled deadlines and the tension of needing to ‘be perfect’, and suddenly I found myself in a world where everyone was nurtured and listened to; each person’s view was heard and acted upon, we were all on the same level, working as a super creative team.”
TAPE’s production model is game-changing. Its collaborative nature allowed them to work with 15 business partners, deliver 300 workshops, and engage with 250 people aged 7 to 65 across Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Yns Mon, Snowdonia and Cardiff. These industry-leading statistics demonstrate the effectiveness of their inclusive practice. TAPE has evolved a non-hierarchical production model which promotes inclusion and opportunity for all. It’s breaking new ground with industry leaders deeming this alternative model as a progressive approach that addresses commonly identified issues around inclusion and diversity.
The film premiered at BFI Southbank in December 2021 at the film festival Busting the Bias, which showcases Disabled practitioners’ work. It’s now being distributed by Bohemia Media, a distribution company focusing on films that give voice to historically marginalised groups. It will be released in cinemas and on Bohemia Media’s own platform, Bohemia Euphoria, from 1 July, and available to rent and buy across all digital platforms from 18 July.