When 2010 came to an end, so did the brilliant series of twelve, once-a-month comedy shorts we were promised by Jackal Films last January. Jackal is the company set up by creative partners, director Jacqueline Wright and actor/writer Alice Lowe (Jaq/Al, geddit?). Alice is becoming a well-known face on British television from roles on Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace, The Mighty Boosh, The IT Crowd, Little Britain, Angelo’s and in the cult film, Hot Fuzz. She also memorably portrayed David Bowie in Snuff Box. These short films are a marvelous showcase for what she (and Wright) can do.
The twelve Jackal shorts also feature some notable emerging UK comedic talent, including Simon Farnaby, James Bachman, Sharon Horgan, Robert Popper and Rich Fulcher and have TV level production values. I don’t think this was an easy—or quick—thing to pull off, twelve short films in one year, and that the quality was consistently very, very high is a testament to the talents of these two hard-working women. Obviously the reason to take on a workload like this is to be noticed professionally, and if there is any justice in the world, let’s hope the industrious Jackal partners are suitably rewarded with a BBC3 series commission in 2011 as well as an HBO or Showtime pilot over here.
You can see all twelve short films at the Jackal Films website (and at special theatrical screenings if you live in the right place). The final, December film, “This Christmastime” (Rock stars do their bit for a good cause with this festive single from 1983) has a rap in the middle of it by Rich Fulcher that saw me with tears rolling down my cheeks I was laughing so hard. Alice (as a Cyndi Lauper-type) delivers a befuddled plea about being a sister herself, that’s equally loopy.
Previousy on Dangerous Minds:
Alice Lowe: Kitty Porn