CAST & CREW

MITCH KALISA

WRITER & DIRECTOR

Originally from Rwanda, Mitch Kalisa arrived in the UK as a child via Uganda. Mitch first explored his passion for film through acting and later moving into painting and sculpture before landing on directing as his primary creative output.

 

“Play it Safe” is his debut short film, influenced directly by his time at a prestigious drama school, and how this perceivably liberal and safe space has just as much ingrained prejudice as other predominantly white spaces. Mitch uses his own experiences to underpin his cinematic pursuit: to break convention and boundaries and tell rich stories from diverse unheard voices. Focusing on complex and often challenging tales, and giving them a visceral character and performance driven platform.

In 2021, Mitch was awarded “Next Director” by the jury at D&AD. 

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JONATHAN AJAYI

LEAD ACTOR

London born rising star Jonathan Ajayi, can recently be seen as viewer’s favourite villian Lekan in the hugely successful series ‘NOUGHTS AND CROSSES’ for BBC One, based on the Malorie Blackman novel.

 

He also featured as Dakerson in DC’s ‘WONDER WOMAN 1984’ with Gal Gadot and Chris Pine. Other big screen credits include a lead in the two-hander feature film ‘THE  DRIFTERS’ which premiered at the São Paulo International Film Festival. He was longlisted for the “BIFA Newcomer Award” for his role.

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CHRIS TOUMAZOU

PRODUCER

At the helm of the development and production was founding partner at COMPULSORY, Chris Toumazou. Having also attended The Arts Educational School with Jonathan Ajayi respectively, their combined awareness led to the casting and production of the film using the school as its backdrop and resource.

Working with the newly appointed Head Of Drama Julie Spencer, the team was able to tap into an authentic casting process, further emphasising the film’s honest approach.

 

Toumazou works with a roster of international directors and multi disciplinary artists, having set up the company’s development slate in 2017. His focus is on discovering and breaking new voices in the narrative space and has led to a track record of premiering work at SXSW, Berlinale, and Sundance. A passionately acute awareness for relevant stories has defined the growing success of his burgeoning film department.

 

He has been instrumental in packaging ‘Play It Safe’ attaching its cast and promoting the film into the festival space and beyond. Most recently, creating a limited license partnership with MUBI internationally for the film during October - December 2021 to coincide with its UK premier at the BFI London Film Festival.

COMPULSORY

PRODUCTION COMPANY

PRODUCTION COMPANY COMPULSORY, the London based talent management and entertainment company was at the helm of development and production, working closely with Mitch and his vision. Having successfully premiered films at the most prestigious film festivals across the world, including SXSW for 6 years, Berlinale, Sundance, Telluride and BFI London Film Festival, Exec Producers Kadri Mahmoud and Chris Toumazou lent their experience in narrative development and in packaging the project. Last year COMPULSORY expanded into the film distribution space by handling the UK theatrical release of Berlinale-winning “NO HARD FEELINGS” directed by Faraz Shariat.

 

The COMPULSORY reputation across film, commercials and music videos has created incredible collaborations with artists such as Madonna, Stormzy and Joy Crookes, alongside brands including Mugler, Vogue, Burberry and Gucci. The ingenuity within the work that they share and development of their roster of talent has also led to multiple nominations internationally, most notably the ‘Contribution to Creative Industries Award’ in 2021. 

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CAST

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Jonathan   JONATHAN AJAYI

 

Tori   HEATHER ALEXANDER

 

Olivia   KATE OVENDEN

Christian   CHARLIE O’CONNOR

Henry   LOUIS RICHARDS

Emma   GRACE DALY

Diane   LAUREN RAISBECK 

Rosie  EMILY SEALE JONES

 

Mary   SHIZUKA FARLEY

Fred   FERNANDO GARCIA

Juliet   KAT RONSON

Vince   SEDAR KESKIN

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CREW

Writer & Director MITCH KALISA

Producer  CHRIS TOUMAZOU

Executive Producer  KADRI MAHMOUD

Cinematographer  JAIME ACKROYD

First AD   TY HACK

Focus Puller   JERRY PRADON

Second AC   JUAN MINOTTA

Key Grip   LLEWELLYN HARRISON

Gaffer   MATT MOFFAT

Gaffer   JAMES DUFFY

Spark   JAMES SINCLAIR

 

Production Assistant   GABY LAFOR

Production Assistant   HANNAH BRANDES

 

Casting Director   MARTHA STEWART

3rd AD   DENIS NORTEY

Unit Driver   CRAIG MOORE

Hair & MUA   KATE O’SHEA

 

Sound Recordist   BLAI ESCAYOLA

Edited by   MITCH KALISA

Colour   ELECTRIC THEATRE COLLECTIVE

Colourist   JASON WALLIS

Colour Producer   OSCAR WENDT

 

Sound Design & Mix   FOCAL RHYTHM PRODUCTIONS

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