For Your Sins is a satirical short film about the modern day ‘advertising industry’, written and produced as a passion project by four Australian industry full timers. Launching this Easter Friday to the public, it features an ensemble of Australia’s favourite comedy performers who reenact the lead up to Jesus’ crucifixion.
The film stars Dave Lawson, Ryan Shelton, Michala Banas, Tegan Higginbotham and Sam Watkins and has already swept up numerous awards including: Best Comedy at the London International Film Awards, Best Screenplay at Canberra Short Film Festival, Best Off-Screen Talent at ReelGood Film Festival and official selections for St Kilda Festival 2018 Opening Night, New York Short Film Festival and Austin Comedy Festival. St Kilda Film Festival Director Paul Harris includes For Your Sins in his favourite five films of last years’ program.
The short takes the universally known story of Jesus Christ’s crucifixion, and places it in today’s world: a 30 something, tradie who wants to raise awareness for a cause (Sins) via a bold public challenge (Crucifixion). But to spread the message and gather followers, ‘Jay’ must engage an ad agency. A resulting clash of worlds reveals the comedic lengths that ad agencies will go to when the prospect of industry awards are on the cards.
The story takes place in real time, showcasing the tricks and talents of adland’s finest (or fakest) in a single boardroom meeting. Managing director Matt (Ryan Shelton) covers up his shortcomings with charisma and jargon, PR Manager Jonnie (Michala Banas) is quick to find an in for paid brand promotions, and outspoken millennial Lucy (Tegan Higginbotham) has her fast-texting fingers firmly on the social media pulse.
Says Terry Mann, co-creator: “The goal was to simultaneously derive comedy from the absurdity of Jesus Christ’s story when placed in a modern-day context, and from the true to life processes of advertising agency thinkers, when tasked with solving the unsolvable.”
Written and produced by a small team whose ad experience spans many roles, agencies and years of unpaid overtime, the satire draws on real-life experience to reveal the true dynamics at play behind the campaigns that find their way into all aspects of our lives.
Says Jack White, co-creator: “I feel like we’ve created a teaser for a bigger story. I want to see how the relationship between Mary and Joseph unfolds, what Jay’s relationship is like with his birth father, and what transpires between him and the agency. It’s a great concept that has a lot of legs”
The team behind it are currently in development on a series-length production of the concept which they hope to sell into the likes of Netflix.
Production Company: Gen C
Writers: Terry Mann and Jack White
Executive Producers: Jack White, Nic Cox & Terry Mann
Director: Julian Lucas
Producer: Nic Cox
DOP: Samuel Broeren
Editor: Chris Axiaq