In a dreary London council estate lives Hugh, widowed and alone in his daily patterned existence. A shell of who he used to be, he drags himself through life with lack of purpose, awaiting the inevitable in anticipation.
Being illegal in the UK, euthanasia is a controversial topic which is the premise of this film. It was made to show what life might be like for a poorer person when considering it; a wealthier person could easily afford to travel to a country where euthanasia is permitted, but for Hugh it isn’t that simple.
The story was created by Will O’Keeffe, a care giver from London, and given to long-time friend, director Will Masheter for him to adapt and develop for the screen. After a month or so of back & forth writing, finally the screen play was ready and that’s when Lucas A. Ferrara signed on to help produce the film. Hugh, who was played by Bill Best, an ex camera operator and veteran of the film industry, switched his role from being behind the camera and delivered a truly humbling performance in front of camera. With his portrayal of someone who has loved and lost, who has lived and died but still wanders aimlessly awaiting his physical death, Bill was able to surface all of the emotive expression required for this dialogue free production.
The crew began filming towards the end of spring 2021. The shoot was scheduled for three days and to be filmed in Peckham South East London. Shooting into the night on one the days, the crew were able to complete the majority of the film, bar the drone shots needed to open and close the film.
The film was edited and at the end of summer, DOP Hugo André and director Will Masheter worked on getting the final shots - setting the tone for ‘Community Service’. The film is in its final stages of editing and will be released on the film festival circuit in Autumn 2021.