Film Production: Hard, Cracked the Wind (Jenkin, 2019)

EncountersIn Spring 2018, director Mark Jenkin sent over a script for a ghost story written by Adrian Bailey. Told over a number of timelines, the script had an inter-dimensional quality which echoed some of the work I’d been doing in my writing on Twin Peaks: The ReturnHard, Cracked the Wind centred around ideas of death, memory, and used metaphors of the sea and heavy weather to evoke themes of what it is to live and love.

Mark and I have talked over the years about doing a sound/film collaboration, and some music had been written for a couple of projects which didn’t quite make it off the ground but this project had a little more momentum, with Kate Byers & Linn Waite from Early Day Films working on the production and the BFI coming into the production during post.
Hard, Cracked the Wind

Adrian’s script chopped and changed a little from that first draft and, following conversations around the story with the director, writer, producers and others (and with the help of some beautiful location recce shots), I wrote a couple of sound design orientated pieces. Later, I added some more traditional music cues prior to shooting and was overjoyed to take up the role of composer on the production in the summer 2018.

With finance secured, the film’s principal photography was completed October 2018. It was a delight to visit the set and discover from the actors that some of those music cues had been played for mood during shooting (Mark’s process uses post sync sound – read more here).

Since then, I worked around Mark’s ongoing visual edits of the film shot and worked with a group of collaborators to deepen the score, with some of these cues informing the edit, and I had sat in to complete the film’s mixing with Mark and dubbing mixer Rich Butler in July 2019.

One of the most satisfying purely creative projects I’ve been involved in, the film premiered at Encounters Film Festival in September 2019, and is on its festival journey now – it has since played  Leeds Film Festival and Cork Film Festival in November 2019, Oberhausen, Rotterdam, London Short Film Festival and the Celtic Media Festival in 2020.

As an additional treat, Mark Kermode has picked up a few of the cues for his Scala Radio show – and talked about the film and its soundtrack on his show broadcast 12 October 2019. Mark starts talking about the film around 1h15m in.

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About Kingsley Marshall

Dr Kingsley Marshall is a film composer, producer and academic. Head of Film & Television at the CILECT accredited School of Film & Television based within Falmouth University in the UK, the subject area consists of 25 staff working with 500 undergraduates, supplemented by a postgraduate community studying from MA level through to PhD. Kingsley’s research and practice primarily orientates around the use of sound (including music and effects) in cinema and television, and the production of short and micro-budget feature films. He executive produced Wilderness (Director: Justin John Doherty, 2017) which won 13 awards at international film festivals since making its premiere at Cinequest, and Mr Whippy (Director: Rachna Suri, 2019). In 2018 he co-produced with Neil Fox the short literary adaptation Backwoods (Director: Ryan Mackfall, 2019), premiering in Portland, Orgeon and winning the HP Lovecraft award at the Rhode Island International Film Festival. More recently, Kingsley recently completed the score as composer on a film project - Hard, Cracked the Wind - with director Mark Jenkin and production company Early Day Films. The film premiered at Encounters Film Festival in September 2019, and has since played festivals across the world including New York Film Festival. For over twenty years he has worked as a journalist, interviewing filmmakers, musicians, and designers for over 30 publications and broadcasters worldwide, written album sleeve notes and biographies for over 100 artists, and contributed to anthologies on hip hop and soul. He can be found on Twitter as @kingsleydc