Wyvern Hill is a unique indie horror film about Beth (Pat Garrett a close collaborator of Frank Oz and Jim Henson) , a mother in her 60s who is showing signs of Alzheimer disease.
Because of this she is forced to move into a new home, in the country with her daughter Jess (Ellie Jeffreys) and Son in Law Connor (Pete Bird). But because of her condition, she realizes only too late that something or someone has moved in with her.
Wyvern Hill is unique in many ways, not least of which its budget, a mere £5000 but the intention was that the film would look and feel a hundred times that amount. It was a passion project initiated by Dr Who and Tv screenwriter Keith Temple, who came up with the idea and wrote the script which was the readapted by myself (and a heavy contribution by Pete Bird) to make it his own. But another particularity is that it was shot in 2020, in Hereford (a city not exactly known for producing a lot of films of any kind, in fact I believe it is Hereford’s first indie horror feature film) between two lockdowns, and more importantly, it is a film which has an extensive cast, with a huge number of characters, multiple locations and scenes with extras, rather than fit into what we’ve seen produced in 2020, the webcam movie (nothing against it at all, needs must but we did things differently).
It involved a huge amount of talent including world famous puppeteer Richard Coombes, Michael Sanchez composing the score, Mike Coombes playing a very dark character, Pablo Raybould and Ben Manning of the Snarling fame and it received a huge amount of support from the local community with locations and transportation.
Shooting between lockdowns in these conditions was a constant challenge, and in a way I feel like we’ve done something very few indie low budgets have even attempted last year.
The primary target was to keep everybody safe, and one of the challenges was that Pat, our main actress, was a potential high risk with Covid, so safety had to be a constant priority on this shoot. So you have to imagine being on a 5k budget film and having to implement a huge number of safety protocols, and we are talking social distancing, masks, temperature checks three times a day and for anyone arriving on set and a huge number of contingencies in case someone fell ill.