Cancer Hair Synopsis
Cancer Hair is a short film about Claire Ferris, a woman in remission from cancer who is extremely self conscious about her hair loss, her good friend Sandra persuades her to go on her first post “all clear” date with a likely lad, Andrew who is seemingly after a one night stand.
After a disastrous start to the date, the two find unexpected common ground in her illness and recovery. Even though they are unlikely to see each other again, this new found affinity prompts her to remove her wig, revealing her true vulnerabilities, if only to him.
It is a non-romantic comedy about the moments, and people, that inadvertently change our lives.
Claire Ferris is at a low point. Having just finished treatment for Cancer she finds herself mid thirties and single. Having always been “the pretty one” she has, for better or worse, been defined by her appearance and in particular, her hair. Hair gone and confidence dented – she is trying to move on with her life.
Her close friend Sandra has finally persuaded her to get off the sofa and back into the dating scene by setting her up with a friend from work, Andrew Banks who met Claire briefly at a mutual friends wedding. Tonight is date night.
When she arrives at the bar with Sandra, Claire realises that both she and her date are as nervous as each other. Despite this, his nerves seem to run away with him and he catches her off guard by asking if she is bald all over and then letting her know he would sleep with her anyway.
The date lumbers from bad to worse when a well meaning waitress complements Claire on her eyebrows regrowing. Claire escapes to the ladies room, where friend Sandra puts her friends fragile ego back together and tells her Andrew’s mother died of Cancer, which is why she set them up.
Claire agrees to go back to the date, if for nothing else than a good war story. She returns to Andrew a little bolshier, a little stronger and a little more confident.
When she walks back to her table, contrite Andrew apologies for his behaviour and they agree to have a drink. As the night goes on, with no expectations on either of them, Claire and Andrew begin to enjoy themselves.
When she asks about his mother, he is full of admiration of how she coped with being ill. Even down to how she’d walk around with her wig deliberately askew to see if anyone would notice.
As Andrew walks her home, it is clear that despite it all, there is an attraction between the two. It is however, an attraction that will never be realised. Andrew steps up to become a proper gentleman, not capitalising on either the attraction or Claire’s vulnerability. Claire in turn rewards this firstly by pulling her wig to the side making it look comically off kilter, before slowly, deliberately peeling off her wig, revealing her hair and thus herself to him, before he blows her a kiss and walks away.
Cancer Hair aims to be a hopeful and thought provoking piece, combining moments of high comedy with drama, tension and that all too human feeling that we are not enough. It shows that overcoming first impressions, coupled with the terribly British habit of carrying on regardless of how awful something becomes, can lead to a special, if unexpected, moment. That moment is not about true love or finding that forever person, it is about is finding yourself.
Concept Art Competition
In May 2013, we ran a concept art competition with Talenthouse to try to get some amazing artists from around the world involved in our project. Amazingly, Nokia sponsored our competition - you can find out more about this HERE - and helped us find the art that summed up the film and the themes demonstrated within them visually. Below are the art and artists we picked.
- Our Winners
David Vidal – David’s work can be seen HERE
What we liked about this image was that it captures some of what the film is about. A young couple on a first date get off to a bad start, partly because she is self conscious that she has lost her hair while undergoing chemo and partly because he says some things he shouldn’t. Although our couple don’t kiss in the script, this image provides a hopeful what if moment that our audience can follow.
David, as well as being an illustrator and fine artist, is also a music producer and can be found at https://www.facebook.com/jakoboofficial
Diane Gibson – Diane’s work can be seen HERE
What we liked about this image is that it really convays the emotions that the characters are going through. Again, the scene doesn’t necessary appear in the script but we love the rawness of it. This young woman is trying to get her life back after cancer has devastated it. She is going to be scared of what comes next. Will she be rejected? Will he like her? Will she want to run away?
Diane is a mother and a grandmother and has her hands full. As well as being kept busy by the family, she is also a talented artist, drawing out the emotion from the situation and laying it bare for all to see. Diane’s portfolio can be found at http://www.talenthouse.com/shamrockedlady
Thanks Diane, we love this piece.
- Peoples Choice Winner
Diego Valdez – Diego’s work can be found HERE
What we liked about Diego’s illustration was that it showed a haunting portrayal of a woman without hair staring proudly at the viewer. It was a very powerful and arresting image and we can certainly see why this won the people’s choice. There is even a touch of angelic wings coming our the back of his image which gives the piece an ethereal feel.
Diego is a formal fashion model who is now an artist, author and illustrator. He has a number of projects on the go and more can be found out about Diego at his website http://www.diegovaldez.com/ . We also recommend you follow him on twitter at @realdiegovaldez
Thanks Diego and Well Done!