Short Film Of The Week: Unfinished London
Young film-makers Jay and Paul have made two episodes of their series Unfinished London – exploring the intricacies, foibles and bizarre history of the roads of old London town. With great production values, sharp humour and a genuinely unique premise, there’s just no way you won’t fall in love with it. We’re posting episode two below (you can never accuse BFF of not being all over that pulse), but episode one can be found here.
We managed to track down the writer and presenter Jay Foreman, to ask him how this strange and wonderful creation came into being…
What got you boys interested in the history of London’s transportation systems – and what came first, the idea for a comedic documentary of some description, or the love of roads roads bloody well roads?
In 2009 my friend Paul and I were both looking for jobs in TV, and we needed a big project we could brag about in interviews. So we decided to make a documentary about the Northern Heights, and gave it the title “Unfinished London” to make it look like a potential series. We already knew quite a lot about the history because we live round there and we wanted to make it as funny as possible so people would actually watch it.
How did the balance of creative responsibility work between the two of you?
There’s a fair bit of time between episodes one and two – any reason for the gap?
The gap is so long because we never expected to do a sequel. But a year after the first one we still didn’t have careers, so we made another episode. It was partly to make us more employable and partly cos people liked the first one and were asking to see more.
Can we expect an episode three, and if so, what do you reckon you’ll focus on next?
I don’t think there’ll be an Unfinished London 3 because we’ve run out of money and ideas. But we are very keen to make more stuff, ideally for proper telly. Whether it’s similar to Unfinished London or not depends on who (if anyone) wants to give us a job.
What on earth do you to fill your time generally (in between researching ghostly ring roads and drawing on computer screens, obviously)
I’m a musical comedian by night, and do odd jobs like voiceovers and guitar teaching by day. Paul works freelance doing bits and pieces for proper TV and film. He’s currently part of the team that makes The Only Way Is Essex .
Seeing as you’re a live performer by trade, how much love do you have for film-based comedy in comparison to the live buzz you get from your musical stuff?
I love the instant feedback you get from an audience, but playing live every night can get a bit repetitive. With a video, it’s the opposite. You spend months on a project, and it changes every day: drafting, writing, filming then editing, but there’s no response until it finally goes online, which is a great feeling after such a long time.
What do we have to look forward to from you?
I’m going back to the Edinburgh Festival in August with a new show called “We’re Living In The Future”. In the meantime I’m still doing plenty of gigs in London. All my dates are listed on www.jayforeman.co.uk/gigs