Nice car. Bad neighbourhood. When Alan parks in the wrong part of town, two con men reckon they can get the better of him. But they’ve underestimated Alan…


The script for CARMA had circulated for several months when the opportunity came up to shoot it as part of a two-film co-production in August 2009 (the other film was LEFTOVERS).

This was Scale’s first major short film production of 2009. It was filmed on location in East London for an authentic gritty feel.

Preliminary casting was in May 2009 when we cast David Ross Elliott for the lead role of Alan. But production concerns pushed the shoot back two months to August 2nd 2009 and a second casting call in Camden found us Steven George (“Dave”) and Chris Mock (“Damian”) to play the two street scammers.


After recently working with the RED One camera on a studio-based production, I was intrigued to see how it would fare under more free-wheeling production conditions. Under the expert guidance of Dominik Rippl we found a “look” and handheld technique that gave us very mobile coverage of the car and the location, while also giving us the post-production flexibility to achieve a near-film like final delivery.

The situation suggested the lo-fi handheld aesthetic of films like Nicholas Winding-Refn’s Pusher and it seemed appropriate to take the same approach to video technology as he did by using the current indie camera of choice, the RED One, I was able to trial the technology that I had no doubt would be leading low- to medium-budget acquisition for the foreseeable future.

A location in Manor House was secured and the production was greenlit. However five days before the shoot, weather forecasts were distinctly unfavourable: 95% chance of rain and 100% cloud cover. A frantic search for new locations with the aid of Agitate Films led us to the perfect, secluded railway bridge in Bow, East London.

And of course the weather turned out beautiful.

Scale Productions presents

A Nick Swinglehurst Film


Director / Writer / Producer – Nicholas Swinglehurst

Production Manager – Derek Laviniere

Executive Producer – Parmjit Singh

Director of Photography – Dominik Rippl

Editor – Michael Oswald

Sound Design – Alastair Nicholls

Focus Puller – Mark Dempsey

Sound Recordist – Stephen Partington

1st Assistant Director – Derek Laviniere

Stills – Maria Lopes, Parmjit Singh

Car Provided by – Chris Cooper


Alan – David Ross Elliott

Damian – Christopher Mock

Dave – Steven George

Facilities provided by Agitate Films