The producers of an independent action/thriller feature film entitled Alleycats have launched a Kickstarter campaign asking for £50,000 of funding. The film, which stars Eleanor Tomlinson and John Hannah, explores the underground world of illegal bicycle racing in London.
Director, Ian Bonhote, says he was inspired to make the film by his own experiences.
“I was introduced to real life Alleycats by a courier friend of mine and instantly became completely hooked on this underground world of bike racing. I even took part in some of the races. I have been developing the film for five years now and believe I have found the heart of the story. I want to bring the unique shooting style I have developed from making many commercials and short films to the forefront of this film.”
While this would be Bonhote’s first feature film, he has plenty of directorial experience having previously worked on commercials and music videos. He has created campaigns for Gatorade, Nike, Puma and Pepsi, as well as promos for Mumford & Sons, Morcheeba, Jamie Cullum and Tom Jones among others. He has also produced a trailer for the film with ‘virtually zero budget’ which can be seen below (contains strong language). However, he says he needs more money to properly shoot action sequences.
Another cost is of course the cast with John Hannah and Eleanor Tomlinson lined up to appear. Hannah is a familiar face, having appeared in Four Weddings and a Funeral, Sliding Doors and The Mummy trilogy, while Tomlinson starred as Princess Isabelle in Jack the Giant Slayer and also appeared in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland.
In 2012 the BBC was heavily criticised for using footage of alleycat racing through London’s streets in its documentary The War on Britain’s Roads. Although the film – shot by US film maker, Lucas Brunelle, who sells DVDs of his footage – shows participants disobeying the rules of the road and pulling off all sorts of dangerous moves, the BBC failed to mention that it was a 'professional' stunt film. While noting that it reflected “extreme behaviour” some viewers may have been led to believe that it was a depiction of ordinary cycling.