The making of ‘Bear Hunt’
This year we decided to do something different to raise awareness of Brighton Festival, and with a Guest Director like Michael Rosen what better way to kick things off by making a film based on one of his most iconic poems?
Brave Brighton-based filmmakers Fat Sand Productions took on the challenge of helping us in our mission and tracked down Michael Rosen himself, friends of the Festival, members of the public and even some of our own team to each read a line of We’re Going On A Bear Hunt each in an iconic setting in across the city.
One of the filmmakers, Sarita Tam, commented, "I remember being in primary school, sitting on the floor watching my Year 3 teacher read this poem aloud to us, actions and all. But what I didn’t remember was quite how long the poem is: 99 lines to be precise! From the onset, we knew it was a rather large mountain to climb for a sleepy January, but we wanted to burn off the Christmas calories!"
Over a 16 day period and working through some very snowy conditions and late into the nights, the Fat Sand team managed to film a varied bunch of people including Michael Rosen, the Mayor of Brighton & Hove, our local BBC news crew, lawyers, engineers, journalists, artists, surfers, students, builders, councilors, ice-cream men, artists, choirs, chefs and even a dog named Archie; who all valiantly read a line of ‘Bear Hunt’ to camera.
Fat Sand ventured into the depths of Brighton Dome and then onto the roof, into the sea, onto the pier, up to Preston Manor and even over to visit some school children in the Book Nook in Hove during the filming.
Each of our brave participants read one or two lines from the poem, which Fat Sand cleverly edited together for a full, and rather interesting, recital of the poem. We were proud to show the film at our launch events on Wed 27 Feb, but you can watch it online here.