Who we are

We, Bethany Clift and Peter Handford, are alumni of the Northern Film School, graduating from the MA in Screenwriting for Film and Television course in 2007.

Some stuff we love:

Beth – My So Called Life, West Wing, Freaks and Geeks, Aliens, Homeboy (novel), The Forever war (in fact anything by Joe Haldeman), Singing in the Rain, Firefly, The Big Bang Theory, Game of Thrones, The Dark Tower, Kate Bush, Josh Ritter, Bonnie Raitt, Like Water for Chocolate, Joss Whedon, playing co-operative X-Box 360 games, popcorn, sleeping, Spanish lager, fresh sheets, country music (don’t judge me), salt!

Pete – Batman, Firefly, Game of Thrones, Star Trek, Crystal Castles, Super Mario Brothers 3, Limbo, Dracula, Hellboy, HP Lovecraft stories, Morrissey, German beer, David Lynch, The Flash, art deco architecture, The Dark Tower by Stephen King, The Big Bang Theory, The Wire, The Sopranos, Belgian buns, Chris Nolan, Guillermo Del Toro, Zombies, Radiohead, Sigur Ros, The Super Nintendo.

We formed Mod Scientists Ltd in 2010 and Heretic is our first feature film, produced entirely independently.

Fast forward to 2012 and Heretic is complete, having privately funded and made by us while holding down full-time jobs and having a baby! (Beth had the baby, not Pete). We are now in the process of screening the movie to interested parties and hope to have signed a distribution deal early in the New Year.

We are hugely proud of what we have achieved and are looking forward to our next project – The Factory. More on this in 2013…..

What we believe

We are filmmakers who believe in the power of film and the importance of a UK film industry.

The United Kingdom is one of the most artistic, historically fascinating and diverse places in the world and we should, and do, have a lot to say for ourselves. Our UK film council has been abolished, tax breaks removed, regional film agencies closed and the UK film industry is being reduced to big budget blockbusters being shot at Pinewood Studios. This should, and does, fill us with rage and horror.

Film is modern campfire story-telling, it is dreams and nightmares presented on screen that help us make sense of our lives and our place in this world. And if these stories no longer reflect us, but only good-looking Americans, then what does that say about our international relevance today; and how will we use these stories to frame our lives?

Heretic is not a British kitchen-sink drama. We are not setting out to overtly comment on the state of society today. Heretic is a thrilling, disturbing, horrific film created foremost to entertain the audience. But despite this, the film’s theme of faith in the modern world still reflects our society; the actors are from the UK, the film is shot here, made by people who live here and financed by UK investors.   This will be a successful film made by the UK film industry.

We do not, however, think the UK film industry is perfect. Far from it. One of the main reasons we are making Heretic is through pure frustration at the lack of opportunities for new or less experienced writers, directors and producers in the UK film industry. For the last three years we have pursued opportunities in the industry and had some real success, yet things rarely ever get made.

Therefore we came to the conclusion that, in the words of a wise man; if you want something doing then do it yourself.

We want to make successful films that have something to say without the need to rely on government funding.  We want to create a self-sustaining studio that can make profit from creative ventures (film, music, video games, novels, graphic fiction) and then use this to support other up and coming artists.

We want Heretic to be the first in a long line of independent, profitable productions released by Mod Scientists. And that journey starts here.

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