Cast

Andrew Squires – Father James Pallister

Jennifer Nelson – Claire Russell

James Zakeri – Fr. Will O’Neill

Jodie Mcenery- Melissa Sibley

Holly Fletcher – Suzie Thomas

Michael J Tait – Tom Carlisle

Paul Fox – Inspector Jack Myers

Crew

Peter Handford – Writer & Director

Bethany Clift – Producer

Jamie Havill – Director of Photography

Harry Wood – Composer

Niina Topp – Production Designer

Tamsyn O’Connor – 1st Assistant Director

Rachel Silk – Make Up and Effects Artist

Daniel Beckett – Gaffer

Carey Moyle – DIT and On-set Editor
………………………………………

Andrew Squires – Father James Pallister

Born In Sheffield and raised in the Yorkshire Wolds, Andrew spent his school years acting and playing in bands. After studying and working as a music producer in Leeds, Andrew reignited his childhood passion for acting after being asked to play a lead role in a friend’s short film and subsequently joined an acting class.

His hunger to find a mentor and teacher led Andrew to study with the renowned acting coach, Bernard Hiller, who has worked with many high profile actors including Jeff Goldblum, Cameron Diaz and Leonardo Dicaprio.

Soon after this, Andrew secured a small part on ITV’s Emmerdale with no agent and no previous screen credit.

Andrew is a firm advocate of creating his own opportunities and after three self-funded trips to LA to work intensively with his coach he was directed in a showcase for industry professionals by LA casting director April Webster (Lost, 2012, Star Trek).

After performing a piece written by himself and his fellow actress, Andrew was the only one from the group of over twenty who was called in to meet with the Vice President of talent and casting at CBS Studios, who had been impressed by his performance in the show and wanted to meet Andrew personally.

With one feature film already under his belt and having just recently secured the lead role in, ‘Heretic’, , Andrew is also writing and starring in a stage play about legendary Chilean Guitarist Victor Jara. Andrew’s spare time is spent with his family, raising  his two children with his wife, Kate.

Visit – Andrew’s Casting Call Profile

Jennifer Nelson – Claire Russell

Jennifer has been a keen actress since childhood, but began her professional career  in 2009 when she acted in several student films for her local art college.

In 2010 she joined a North-East based group called Writers’ Block, who aim to connect writers with film-makers and actors in the north, and through them Jennifer has acted in many professional short films and acted in films for two 48hr film competitions, one of which was the winning film.

Jennifer has also been involved in ‘scare-acting’ through a company called AtmosFEARS! With them Jennifer spent Halloween dressed as an ugly Rapunzel doing “promenade theatre” in the woods with many other actors, and scaring children as they enjoyed the mile long woodland fairy-tale walk at Stockeld Park, Wetherby.

Since December Jennifer has been represented by Claypole Management, and has been pursuing acting full time for over a year.

Jennifer also writes a blog on her acting experiences – http://anattemptatacting.blogspot.com/

Visit – Jennifer’s Casting Call Profile

James Zakeri – Fr. Will O’Neill

James Darious Zakeri  was born in October 1986 to his English mother and Persian father  in Barnsley South Yorkshire.  James is excited to be making his screen acting debut as ‘Will’ in the feature film ‘Heretic’.

From a young age he has always been a performer and feels especially grateful to be achieving his acting ambitions after very nearly losing his life to meningitis aged six.

James has been involved in many local theatrical productions in which he has had leading roles, most recently including ‘Nathan Detroit’ in ‘Guys and Dolls’, ‘Curly’ in Oklahoma and ‘Harold’ in ‘The Full Monty ‘at The Alhambra in Bradford.

James developed his acting skills though LAMDA Examination completing all grades with honours. He graduated in 2008 from the Newcastle Performance Academy with a two year foundation Degree in Acting. It was here that James realised his passion for screen acting. James’ favourite actors are Robert De Niro and Johnny  Depp.

Jodie Mcenery- Melissa Sibley

Jodie has had a passion for acting and performance since she was very young and, as a child, would often perform sketches to her parents that she had made up herself.   She went on to study drama, dance and theatre studies at GCSE and A-Level, and auditioned and became a member of The National Youth Theatre Company.

Jodie trained at Stage 84, Bradford and landed her first TV role at the age of 16 on ITV’s The Royal.  Since then Jodie has had parts in TV, Theatre and Short Films, some of which include, ‘Kimberly’ in BBC Five Days alongside Suranne Jones, Anne Reid and Katie Griffiths, ‘MAM’ directed by Hugo Speer and ‘Ispy’ playing the lead role of Clara.

As well as acting, Jodie is a qualified dancer with the IDTA (International Dance Teachers Association) and teaches on a regular basis.

Jodie is very excited to be involved with ‘Heretic’ and from the moment she first read the script at her first audition, she knew she wanted to land the role of Melissa.

Visit – Jodie’s Casting Call Profile

Holly Fletcher – Suzie Thomas

From a young age, Holly has had a passion for acting and was involved in productions inside and outside of school including 42nd Street with East Cheshire Theatre Company, Robin Prince of Sherwood and HONK! with Christies Theatre Company and Aladdin and Dick Whittington at the Buxton Opera house. She went on to play the lead role of Dawn and male role of Kev in Judith Johnson’s Somewhere.

Currently, Holly is studying at The Arden School of Theatre working towards a degree in musical theatre and is regularly involved in other acting projects such as Styal Mill Spooky Tours, RATS a multi-lingual culture-eco project in Sweden and various music videos and short films. These include the romantic teen tragedy, Sarah’s Boyfriend; horror, The House; experimental drama Mechanical Pink and comedy spoof horror, Last drop. Heretic will be her first feature film, which she is eagerly looking forward to.

Visit – Holly’s Starnow Profile

Michael J Tait – Tom Carlisle

Michael has had a passion for film and music from an early age and at 15 began writing songs in a band. As a singer and songwriter Michael continued with music beyond his University degree, and still writes songs to this day.

Michael has always been a huge fan of science fiction and fantasy, and in 2004 he began to write his own sci-fi novel ‘Psych’. However, his love of film meant that he always intended ‘Psych’ for the big screen, so he is currently co-writing the screenplay, and hopes that one day his dream of seeing his story in the cinema will become a reality.

As well as writing for film, Michael is also currently drafting a TV drama series entitled ‘The Oracle’, a paranormal crime series. It is through his interest in TV and film that Michael decided to venture into acting, something he always wanted to do. He began by acting in a number of short films and has recently appeared as a detective in the acclaimed ITV drama ‘Appropriate Adult’. Michael is also a current student of Manchester School of Acting.

Landing the role of Tom has been the highlight of Michael’s career so far and he is looking forward to begin filming.

Paul Fox – Inspector Jack Myers

Born and raised in Leeds, William spent his youth playing the drums in various different bands, Not being much of a scholar William pinned all his hopes on becoming a professional musician,but unfortunately it wasn’t to be.

Accepting that he must knuckle down and try and earn some sort of living, he undertook a plastering apprenticeship. This would be the career that William would follow on and off for the next few years. It was in his mid twenties that he decided that there must be more to his working life than being covered in plaster dust for 10 hours a day, it was then that he decided to follow a passion for acting that he had carried since his school days.

Not knowing the best way to break into acting, he did  a little research and he joined local amateur dramatic society, Leeds Arts Centre, it was here his spark for acting was truly ignited. William starred in many different plays for the LAC such as A Memory of Water, the crucible and comedy of errors. It was after 2 years performing with the LAC that William decided that he needed to take the next step and find an agent.

Over the last 18 months William has worked with the Spud Theater Company, Faceless and the Manhattan Children’s Theatre as well as starring in award nominated short film Pierre le Magnifique. William is currently working with the New End Theatre starring in their critically acclaimed play ” Where’s your mama gone” and later in the year he will be reprising his role as Renton in Trainspotting at the Edinburgh festival. In his spare time William likes to listen to music and spend time with his wife Sara and two children Edie and Ella.

Crew

Peter Handford – Writer & Director
Peter from Mod ScientistsPete is a screenwriter and script reader from Birmingham who currently lives in Leeds.  He has written a number of screenplays for TV and Film as well working as a script reader for Scottish Screen for four years, in which time he has written reports on screenplays for nearly a hundred films including Outcast (starring James Nesbitt), Neil Marshall’s Doomsday, and the forthcoming Outpost II: Black Sun.

Last year, Peter was one of three screenwriters commissioned by Screen Yorkshire and Warp X films to write a treatment for a low budget feature which had the potential to be optioned by Warp X.  Although the scheme did not go any further, the experience of writing for low budget cinema convinced Peter that creating a professional and imaginative horror on a micro budget was possible and so Heretic was born.

Heretic will be Pete’s directorial debut.

Pete’s directorial inspirations are: David Lynch, Clint Eastwood, John Woo, John Carpenter, Christopher Nolan, Takashi Miike, Alfred Hitchcock, Chan-wook Park, Guillermo Del Toro and Wong Kar Wai.   Please note that he does not intend to draw on all of his directorial influences whilst directing Heretic!

Bethany Clift – Producer
Bethany is a screenwriter and producer from London currently based in West Yorkshire. Bethany has written a number of screenplays for television and film including Love Cats (chosen for development by Eon Screenwriter’s Workshop) and The Old Timers (finalist on the TAPs ‘Finding the Writer’s voice’ Development Scheme).

Bethany worked as a writer and producer for the Nottingham based ‘4F Films’ for three years where she worked on short films including Strange Fruit and Linked. Bethany also wrote, directed and produced her own short film; Soliciting.

Heretic will be Bethany’s first feature production and experience has taught her that the most important thing to get right on set is the catering.

Jamie Havill – Director of Photography

Jamie studied filmmaking at the University of Leeds, where he received a first class Degree with honours. Since then, he has studied under some of the worlds most influential cinematographers (Brian Tufano, Stuart Harris) and dedicated his life to the craft of moving imagery.

At just 23, Jamie is an award-winning cinematograper who’s work has been seen the world over. Many of his features and short films have played at major film festivals, and his music videos have been aired at multiple events around the world. My Favourite Things (2009) has aired at a total of sixteen world class festivals, and has been screened on the BBC’s ‘Big Screen Showcase, whilst some of his most recent work, ‘ ‘Red Kingdom Rising’ and ‘Reverie’, are both set to premiere in 2012.

He has successfully completed projects on the Red One, Sonys F35 and Panavisions Genesis Camera, s16mm and 35mm, and has experience on a range of budgets. Over the years Jamie also wrote numerous articles on Cinematography that received publication online, as well as journals within the academic world.

Harry Wood – Composer
Harry from Mod ScientistsHarry Wood is a writer and musician from the North Lakes, Cumbria, whom has lived in the Leeds, on-and-off, for the past 10 years. He has composed original music for a number of plays and art installations, but this is his first foray into the realm of feature film, a medium which has long been a major influence on his writing.

Harry’s inspirations are Northern England, Southern France, and train travel between the two, whilst his artistic influences include P J Harvey, Arthur Miller, Harold Pinter, Paul Thomas Anderson, Johnny Greenwood, J.M Turner and Paula Rego.

He is the bassist in Olfar and The Feral Pets, and the singer-songwriter in Emil The Defective, and Mon Capitaine.

Niina Topp – Production Designer

Niina Topp studied Arts and Graphic Design in Finlandand worked as an Art Director in Helsinki before moving to Edinburgh, Scotland. She graduated from Edinburgh Napier University in 2009 with a degree in BA (Hons) in Film and Photography. With the

background in arts, she started working in the art department on various fiction films whilst being involved in documentaries as well.

In 2009 she attended to Berlinale Talent Campus as a Production Designer and won an award for the best art direction in Alcine International Film Festival. Niina lives in North London and works as a freelancer in film as well as in graphic design.

Tamsyn O’Connor – 1st Assistant Director

Since completing her training in Drama at university several years ago, Tamsyn has worked in both Film & Television for the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky and on independents.

She is a highly experienced Assistant Director with credits in both Film & Television, having worked in the Assistant Directors department on several major UK television shows, including SHAMELESSCOUNTDOWN, FALLING, VINCENT, BODIES and LAST OF THE SUMMER WINE to name a few. Over the next year she will be working on three independent UK feature films as 1st Assistant Director, including HERETIC.

Tamsyn also works as the Senior Associate Producer for The Leo Media & Entertainment Group, developing film scripts from conception right through to production.

You can visit her website http://tamsynoconnor.weebly.com for more information on both her current and up and coming projects.

Rachel Silk – Make Up and Effects Artist

With a Ba (Hons) in Art and History and a Ma in Contemporary Art, Rachel wanted a way to use her art background and combine it with her interest in film and television. She went on to study Media make up and Prosthetics at the School Of Make Up in Stockport. She has mainly grown her career within the North of England and has worked within fashion, advertising and television for BBC, ITV and Sky channels. Film is where she feels she is the most challenged and creative, this will be Rachel’s second feature film after the soon to be released horror ‘Unwelcome’ shot in France by dark hour pictures as well as short films, the most recent being the gritty and dark ‘Shed’ and ‘Trauma’. She is excited to join the crew on heretic and found the script was extremely thought provoking and is looking forward to helping make it as equally visually compelling and frightening! Despite the tag that make up is all glamour, Rachel particularly enjoys the special effects side of the job and is often found knees deep in fake blood, she in known for always being prepared and is also well stocked with haribo, especially for night shoots!

Daniel Beckett – Gaffer

Daniel has been gaffing for about two years and since have worked on many productions. The more notable ones being a two week short shot in Wales called Reverie, a feature film called Vinyl shot in Wales (as a spark) with an American crew, a short in Manchester called

Girl Talk, a short in Leeds called ‘Balls’, a promo video for a play called ‘Alcatraz’ which has won second prize in Edinburgh fringe festival, a short shot in York called ‘My Favourite Things’, a documentary shot in Leeds called ‘Closing Time’, a Short shot in Halifax called ‘Mnemonic’.

Daniel has a degree in electronic and electrical engineering which has helped many times in the past when something electrical/electronic has gone wrong in a time critical situation – from diagnosing bad socket wiring to fixing a make-up artists hair curlers.  He has been dubbed ‘the problem fixer’ on set before due to his background in engineering. Daniel comes fully prepared to film shoots to deal with a multitude of problems since you never know what situation may arise.

Carey Moyle – DIT and On-set Editor

Carey is an editor born and raised in Blackpool. During his time at Leeds University taking ‘Cinema Television and Photography Production’, he honed his editing skills primarily on a number of smaller budget short films. Notable mentions include My Favourite Things which featured on the BBC’s ‘Big Screen showcase’ and Reverie a twenty minute self financed piece.

Most recently Carey was commissioned to create a promotional video for the Barrow section of the charity – the ‘Royal National Lifeboat Institution’.

Carey’s editing strengths lie in his speed and fluency in technical side and also knowledge of the classical editing techniques that give him the foresight to avoid less effective avenues

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