One father has raised a campaign to fight bullying and world-famous Hollywood star Kate Winslet has given her support for this honourable and highly necessary endeavour. The British Winslet is the voice behind one of the main characters in the animation short film titled Daisy Chain. The anti-bullying film is written and directed by Australian Galvin Scott Davis.
Daisy Chain’s Plot
The video is only five minutes long but the people involved in its production are hoping it will create more awareness of the problem and stop bullying. Winslet narrates the tale and it’s illustrated by Anthony Ishinjerro. The story revolves around a boy who goes by the name Benjamin and a girl known as Buttercup Bree. Buttercup Bree employs her own brand of magic, which involves enchanted daisy chains, to fight bullying.
The Driving Force behind the Short Film
Writer-director Davis claimed Daisy Chain was inspired by his son’s experiences under the hands of bullies. Davis noticed his middle child was acting more quiet than usual and the father eventually discovered his son was suffering from bullying. While it wasn’t a horrible case of bullying, it was sufficient for Davis’ son to experience less self-confidence.
To help his son, Davis told the Guardian Australia that he sat down and told the boy a bedtime tale that ended with the quote “bullying is for people with no imagination”.
Davis is employed as the director of a digital agency and he developed the story he spontaneously created for his son. The story featured a boy called Benjamin and enchanted dandelions. Davis was then able to produce a successful interactive book app that allows its young users to “blow” things off an electronic screen like a smartphone or a tablet.
From Story to App to Film
The app became a big hit and it even won multiple awards, as well as turning into one of the best selling book apps in all of Australia back in 2012. It also beat the highly popular Peppa Pig.
The awards and a Random House picture book deal weren’t sufficient for the writer-director Davis. It was his goal to create a film which he wanted people to share for free online. To accomplish this, Davis contacted Screen Australia and pitched the idea for Daisy Chain.
According to Screen Australia’s multi-platform manager, Tim Phillips, creating the short film and making it accessible via YouTube was part of the plan so it would be “incredibly accessible for not only the kids, but their family and schools.”
When Screen Australia got a hold of Davis’ pitch, what highly stood out for them was how film, technology and storylines were all being employed to not only entertain the target audience but to also educate and promote critical thinking in the very young target market.
A Hollywood Star’s Bright Light
Daisy Chain was animated by Frederick Venet and its musical score involves the work of Hylton Mowday. It’s currently available on YouTube so that parents and children can watch view it completely free of charge. As of today, the short has over 20,000 views.
Another very pleasant surprise for Davis was the involvement of an A-list Hollywood actress in his project. He had once met the Academy Award winning Kate Winslet on a British film set when he was working as an aspiring actor. She once advised Davis to “never give up”.
The Titanic actress’ words motivated Davis so he went on to reach out to Winslet. She had recently been cast Lee Miller, a Second World War photographer for a fresh biopic project. The actress agreed to be involved in Daisy Chain and eventually provided the voiceover for the anti-bullying movie.
Davis claims he’s not a bullying expert. He calls himself a writer who noticed bullying has gotten worse with the advent of social media and electronic devices. These gadgets, according to the Davis, make it very easy for people to click a button and reach a huge audience. A photo that can harm children can be shared quickly.
In the film Daisy Chain, the character Buttercup’s bullies take a picture of her and place the image on every tree they could find. Buttercup couldn’t escape the photo and the ubiquitous trees in the film represent the Internet in real life.