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Retail

The retirement of Abigail’s manager leaves her as the last human employee in one of the oldest branches in the country. Forresters is the largest chain of retail stores on the planet and it’s heavy push towards mechanisation has left most of its human employees hanging by a thread.

Alongside her fellow high tech machine employee ‘Bertie’, Abigail embarks on attempting to make her role relevant in an industry where humans are now becoming surplus to requirements whilst fighting to maintain her own sanity. That said, in a world where everything and everyone is easily replaced, who at Forresters really is safe?

  • Jonathan James
    Director
  • Jonathan James
    Writer
  • Jonathan James
    Producer
  • Gareth Moore
    Producer
  • Shelley-Ann Harrison
    Key Cast
    “Abigail”
  • Daniel Godward
    Key Cast
    “Will”
  • Stephan Rhodri
    Key Cast
    “Mason”
    Gavin and Stacy, Wonder Woman
  • Glyn Bateman
    Key Cast
    “Customer”
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Drama, Sci Fi
  • Runtime:
    15 minutes 15 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 1, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
  • London-X4 Short Film Festival AUTUMN 2018
    London
    United Kingdom
    Special Mention
  • International Independent Film Awards 2018
    Los Angeles, California
    United States
    International Independent Film Awards 2018 Silver Award
  • Filmmaker Day
    Torino
    Italy
    October 29, 2018
    Italian Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Marina del Rey Film Festival®
    Los Angeles, California
    United States
    October 17, 2018
    North American Premiere
    Best International Short Film
  • Berlin Flash Film Festival
    Berlin
    Germany
    October 31, 2018
    German Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Bengals International Film Festival 2018
    Bengaluru
    India
    October 28, 2018
    Indian Premiere
    Finalist
  • Eurasia International Monthly Film Festival
    Moscow
    Russian Federation
    January 7, 2019
    Russian Premiere
    Monthly Winner
  • Changing Face International Film Festival
    Sydney
    Australia
    November 23, 2018
    Australian Premiere
    Best Sci Fi
  • Hyperwave Film Awards
    Carson
    United States
    January 16, 2019
    Semi-Finalist
  • Global Shorts
    Los Angeles, California
    United States
    September 30, 2018
    Nominated
  • Lugano Independent Filmmakers Festival
    Lugano
    Switzerland
    October 1, 2018
    Swiss Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Short and Sweet Film Festival
    Utah
    United States
    January 18, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Rome Independant Prisma Awards
    Rome
    Italy
    January 5, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Summershort Festival
    Munich
    Germany
    November 9, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Culver City Film Festival
    Culver City
    United States
    December 4, 2018
    Official Selection
  • 5th International Motion Festival
    Nicosia
    Cyprus
    May 6, 2019
    Cypriot Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Chapter Moviemaker
    Cardiff, Wales
    United Kingdom
    February 4, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Eurasia International Film Festival
    Moscow
    Russian Federation
    January 26, 2019
    Finalist
  • Hollywood Film Competition
    Los Angeles, California
    United States
    February 16, 2019
    Best Sci Fi Short
  • Carmarthen Bay Film Festival
    Llanelli
    United Kingdom
    May 27, 2019
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Jonathan James

Born in Cardiff Wales, Jonathan Lloyd James had immersed himself in writing from a young age. With a passion for storytelling and a desire to entertain he initially trained as a pro-wrestler before turning his head to the world of film. He joined an amateur dramatic society to continue his creative outlook, making his incredibly ambitious first film Fairy Dust (2009). From there he went on to study an MA in Film Production and has ever since been collaborating on projects, with his own work prominently in the comedy genre.

Shortly after graduating from the University of Glamorgan he formed a comedy ensemble Clipbored (2010-12) who broke the barrier between the online world and the small screen with numerous sketches being aired weekly. They had a strong online presence and with their success lead them to perform at The Cardiff Comedy Festival in 2012 at Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff. In recent years he has collaborated with London Comedy Writers producing a number of sketches and the dark thriller short film, Mucky Pup (2017).

Throughout his career he has held many credits producing and editing music videos for artists such as Carw ‘Dragau’ for S4C and The Dirty Youth ‘Just Move On’ for Kerrang. He has produced, edited and starred in Mice of Men (2014) for the SCI-FI-LONDON 48 Hour Film Challenge, a locations manager for the feature film The Reverend (2011) and a second assistant director for IRIS Prize: Little Man (2012) for BBC Cymru.

In 2016 he graduated from The New York Film Academy and with this a new outlook inspired him to delve into the world of drama where a year later Retail was born. Mixing dark humour with a look at how technology will continue to develop in future years, he now seeks to inspire audiences with a moving look at the future of employment. In a Buzz Magazine interview (c. March, 2015) he explained, “never be afraid of writing about a subject just because it’s controversial”, advice he certainly took on board throughout his creative career and will endeavour to inspire on future projects.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

The idea for Retail came not only from my own personal experiences in the retail sector but also from general observations of the world around us. We’ve always been convinced that IT and machinery are a huge positive for mankind, enabling us to perform tasks in our working lives that our predecessors in the same roles could only dream of. I believe we are rapidly now reaching the point where computers are going way beyond being an aid to our work and are quickly making us, at best, a workplace luxury.

I know the idea of mankind no longer needing to work may seem like a dream to many but from my experience of being made redundant, it was only when I began working again did I fully appreciate the effect of not working on my mental wellbeing. There is a conversation that needs to be had and had soon regarding how far we want technology to take us and what the impact that is going to have on us and our children.

Retail is shot in a very unique style, mixing elements of drama and sci fi with a documentary element with large parts following the interview of Abigail, the last human staff member in the oldest store of the fictional shop called Forresters. Watch as Abigail attempts to put a positive spin on the direction of her company. Her eyes, however, tell a different story.

My hope for Retail, aside from as something to genuinely entertain the audience and to make you fall in love with the characters on show, is to open a long overdue discussion about technology and what we want our future to actually be.