Cancer Hair is an ambitious short film about Claire, a young woman in remission from cancer who goes on her first post “all clear” date with a likely lad Andrew. After a disastrous start to the date, the two find unexpected common ground in her illness and recovery. This new found affinity prompts her to remove her wig, revealing her true vulnerabilities, if only to him.
It's a non-romantic comedy about the moments, and people, that inadvertently change our lives and give us the strength to do things we wouldn't do ordinarily.
You can read the full synopsis HERE.
Cancer Hair is a short film by Writer/Director Gail Hackston and Producers Helga Ernudottir and Isabelle Sieb. The film was shot in October 2013, completed in January 2014 and will be entered into film festivals throughout 2014.
Why this film?
Cancer affects everyone.
What drew us to this story in particular was two things
1) The impact that hair loss, due to Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy and drugs, has on women
2) Taking up a story where most on screen depictions of cancer finish - i.e. at the all clear
Hair is a very personal thing and for some women, including our character Claire, it is what defines her femininity. When she loses her hair, she loses her sense of self.
This is something that has happened, sadly, to millions of women around the world and while some don't care about the hair loss, some v and is not normally part of the narrative of cancer that has on screen.
Many Cancer stories are about "the battle to win", a phrase that many Cancer survivors get annoyed at. What makes Cancer Hair different is that it is about the "what next?". This is a young woman who has been given the all clear, as such many of the support systems around her have been withdrawn, she is expected to be happy and just get on with it. Cancer Hair shows a young woman struggling to return to a sense of normality. And yet, never quite managing it.
It is however a hopeful piece and ends with a new sense of possibility for the character.
As with many stories, this started our as a what if. What if you were in remission from Cancer, were self conscious about your hair loss and went on a date? What would happen?
We felt that a story such as this works best when the humour is laced with the drama which is why we call the story is a non romantic comedy. Life doesn't always end with girl getting the guy - God knows the girl doesn't always want the guy! Maybe what she wants is a fun night out, a giggle and not to feel to self conscious every time she looks in the mirror. That is where Cancer Hair comes from.