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Just Kids

Short Film
Alisha (7) struggles to be accepted as a female football player among boys, but she soon discovers the other children are not where her problems are coming from

We raised $5,558 of our $18,886 goal

29%

Check out the rewards for donors

The Film

Synopsis

Seven-year-old Alisha is the only girl in her football team. Each new game comes with new boys who are not ready to lose against her, making her experience frustrating rather than enjoyable. But one day she plays against Ben, who even refuses to shake her hand before the match and spits on the ground. He is not a bad boy, but he feels the weight of living up his mother’s expectations and develops aggressive behaviour to cope with the pressure. Alisha and Ben end up physically fighting in the changing room when Alisha seeks revenge by slamming the doll she finds in Ben’s bag against the walls. It is Ben’s mother who eventually puts an end to the fight. She gifts the doll to Alisha — who in her words is ‘a better fit’ than Ben — and takes her crying son back to the football pitch. Ben glances back at the doll one last time, saying goodbye to that part of his character, now lost forever… Alisha is shaken from what she has just seen, but she understands: she tidies the doll up and tucks it back in Ben’s backpack. Perhaps not everything is lost yet…

Why this film

Gender stereotypes are the main cause of major social issues such as violence against women, high suicide rates among young men, and the gender pay gap. By the age of six, children already have a clear idea of what their role in society is and how they are supposed to behave based on their gender. Studies show that such young girls have serious self-esteem problems: they consider themselves less intelligent and capable than boys and believe certain tasks or positions of power are more suitable for boys. On the other hand, young boys struggle to express emotions and develop violent behaviour. “Just Kids” tries to show how parents and teachers could be inadvertently fuelling a negative loop that is preventing us from living in a fairer society for both women and men.

Director’s Statement

I’ve never been the stereotypical “macho” boy. In my teenage years, I have suffered the peer pressure of not being ‘man’ enough. Growing up I’ve understood there was nothing wrong with me. Instead, I was the victim of an old way of thinking that is still deeply rooted in the minds of many parents. Even if part of our society has moved on from certain stereotypes, many are still convinced that toys like cars for boys and dolls for girls are a child’s “natural instinct”, rather than the conditioning of a society that pigeonholes individuals based on their gender. I believe cultural change is necessary and I’d love to be part of it.

The Team

Writer / Director

Alessandro Riconda. His early amateur work was broadcasted by BBC, FOX, MTV and Comedy Central, but he is best known for the short film “Shame and glasses”, which was an official selection in over 200 festivals including the Academy qualifying TIFF Kids, Chicago Children’s Int Film Festival and Guanajuato Film Festival, and won the “Best Overall” award at Chicago Int. Film Festival’s Cineyouth section. The short was also acquired by HBO Europe and MoMA New York, and it is still being shown at festivals and on TV channels around the world. He works as a freelance script coordinator, script reader and director’s assistant for Film and HETV Drama while developing a slate of short film and TV projects. My credits include “The Peripheral”, “Master of None”, “Brave New World”, “Disobedience” (dir. Sebastian Lelio) and “Military Wives” (dir. Peter Cattaneo).

Producer

Siona Davis is a freelance creative. She has experience working for Lucasfilm, Universal and Marvel as a Visual Effects Coordinator. In 2020, she has coordinated on two features: The Northman (dir Robert Eggers) and Brahmastra (dir. Ayan Mukerji). In between her experience on feature films, she produces narrative content. Most recently, What’s in a Name? (dir. Runyararo Mapfumo) as part of The Uncertain Kingdom’s anthology, distributed by VERVE and playing on major streaming services including Amazon, BFI Player and iTunes. Siona’s commitment towards progressive social change drives her emphasis on story development and to enhance her experience she edits scripts and writes script reports, including having written reports for the Rocliffe New Writing Competitions this year. Siona is a Sustainability Rep for BECTU and has completed both Albert the Producer Training and Sustainable Production training as attained from BAFTA’s Albert program.

Music Composer

Andrea Vanzo – Music has always been a catalyst for Andrea: an expression of emotions and profound states of being especially in the fascinating world of cinema and theatre, where he finds his ideal artistic dimension. He wrote the music for several plays and award-winning short films, obtaining the “Best Soundtrack” award at the international short film festival CortoLovere for “Shame and Glasses” (directed by Alessandro Riconda). In 2016 he wrote “Take me home” with singer and actress Matilda De Angelis (“The Undoing”) and the song was featured in the TV drama “Tutto può succedere” – the Italian remake of “Parenthood”. In 2020, he won the 1st prize at an international contest promoted by “Central European String Quartet” with “Wires” and he published the EP “Frames”, which marks his debut as an artist in the contemporary classic music genre.

Social Impact

Our supporters will help us make an impact by using the film as part of their daily activities in schools and distributing it to an audience of parents and teachers.

You Be You
We inspire children to think beyond their race, class and gender
GEC
Delivering Diversity & Equality in homes, schools & businesses
Lifting Limits
Delivering gender equality through education
Sonshine Magazine
Raising boys for an equal world. Thought-provoking articles about how society restricts ALL our kids

Production Costs

Your donations will help cover the costs of making the film. The total budget for the film is £30,000.

Costs breakdown

Frequently Asked Questions

Rewards

DONOR CREDIT
$10 min donation

You will be credited as “Donor” in the credits at the end of the film.

MUSIC LOVER PACKAGE
$15 min donation

Receive the soundtrack and the music sheet written by composer Andrea Vanzo. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet

VIRTUAL PREMIERE PACKAGE
$20 minimum donation

Watch the film before anyone else during its private online premiere. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)

EARLY ACCESS PACKAGE
$25 minimum donation

Receive a private link to watch the film on demand as many times as you like before it is released online. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film

LUCKY FAN PACKAGE (only 10 available)
$50 minimum donation

Receive the screenplay and the film poster signed by the main cast and the director. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director

MEET THE MAKERS PACKAGE (only 2 available)
$100 minimum donation

You’ll be invited to the private cast & crew screening in London (UK) – an exclusive opportunity to watch the film before anyone else with the makers. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director
  • Invite to Cast & Crew Screening in London (UK)

SET EXPERIENCE PACKAGE (only 2 available)
$200 minimum donation

You will be invited to visit the set during the filming. Optionally, you can also be featured in the film as an extra if you meet certain requirements. Contact us for more info. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director
  • Invite to Cast & Crew Screening in London (UK)
  • Visit the set + be featured in the film as an extra (optional)

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER PACKAGE (only 2 available)
$1,500 minimum donation

You will be credited as “Associate Producer”. Contact us for more info. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director
  • Invite to Cast & Crew Screening in London (UK)
  • Visit the set + be featured in the film as an extra (optional)
  • Credit as Associate Producer

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER PACKAGE (only 1 available)
$5,000 minimum donation

You will be credited as “Executive Producer”. Contact us for more info. This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director
  • Invite to Cast & Crew Screening in London (UK)
  • Visit the set + be featured in the film as an extra (optional)
  • Credit as Executive Producer

DIGITAL COLLECTOR PACKAGE (only 1 available)
$8,000 minimum donation

You will receive the Non-Fungible Token (NFT) of the film. Only one NFT will be issued so you will be the only one to own it. It could come in handy when we’ll win an Oscar 😉 Contact us for more info.
This package includes:

  • End credit as donor
  • Film soundtrack mp3 file and PDF file of music sheet by composer Andrea Vanzo
  • Invite to the online premiere of the film (live event)
  • Private link to watch the film
  • Screenplay and film poster signed by the main cast and the director
  • Ownership of the only existing NFT of the film
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