I've mentioned bits here and there about working on the FWOAN project, but now's time for an official update...
After its successful festival run, our short film, ‘For Want Of A Nail’ was released in February 2020. Behind the scenes, Director Lucy Barnes, Writer Nick Thomson and Producer Ali Causon, were already developing the idea of progressing the film to a series and started pitching the idea… Then the pandemic hit.Like many, it was a massive setback for us. With the world in chaos and no one really knowing how or when to move forward… we kept our creative minds busy. The 3 of us continued working on the series.... Almost a year and a half later, we are in a strong position to move to the next stage of production and get the green light.Now feels like the right time to tell you a bit more about the proposed series, to raise awareness for the subject matter. To give the OCD community a voice and a more honest representation of a misunderstood mental health condition.
Thanks for your support. - Ali Causon [Producer Oakhill Productions]
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder has never been shown accurately on-screen before – until now. Inspired by the writer, Nick’s own experiences with the 'silent illness', the viewer will be firmly placed into the POV of OCD as we dive into the protagonist's mind and meet the personifications of his true self as well as his dark passenger, who are pitched in a David and Goliath battle over control of their host's well-being.By incorporating live action with animation ‘For Want Of A Nail’' will broadcast the inner workings of Marty's mind and condition, a condition that sufferers routinely keep hidden from the world.To the sufferer, they are trapped in a clandestine and abusive relationship with their OCD – it is not something to be whispered about, never mind shouted from the rooftops for all to know.One of the main reasons OCD has remained in the shadows for so long is because it is an embarrassing condition to have, one that you do not want anyone to know about, one that is casually mocked and even derided (“Obsessive Cake Disorder”, anyone?)The series seeks to combine information within the context of a drama, with the release valve of appropriately targeted humour (we never laugh at OCD – those with OCD can recognise the absurdity while suffering the consequences – and Marty deploys humour as a coping mechanism). Allowing the viewer to laugh with Marty removes some of the burdensome weight of the subject.
With the short film, and now in developing the TV series, we have worked closely with mental health charaties, in particular OCD Action.
“Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a debilitating mental health condition, which unfortunately is still widely trivialised and misunderstood. Raising awareness of the condition is vital, not only to help inform the public of the often devastating impact OCD has, but also to help those with the condition feel less alone. We were approached by Oakhill Productions in ‘17 and were instantly keen to support them with their project. From the outset, it was clear that portraying OCD in an honest and sensitive manner was of utmost importance to the production crew, and this has remained a clear priority for them throughout the production process. What better way to raise awareness than a series which entertains audiences with humour and a moving storyline, whilst at the same time highlighting OCD through the protagonist Marty, whose time-consuming and life limiting rituals affect not just him but those around him. ‘For Want of a Nail’ is not only a fantastic concept, but a brilliant platform which will contribute to a greater understanding of mental ill health.” - OCD ACTION
You can view the original short film, in its entirety, on YouTube.