Lights, Cameras, Child Care: On-Set Nurseries Aim to Transform the Film Industry

After spending time with her son, actor Charlotte Riley was delighted to return to work in 2016 to play the BBC’s Kate Middleton. King Charles III. “I could only do it,” she says, “if I bring my child with me. It was great, he was there with me.” Paying Aya to go with him on the set, he reasoned, got him to the door “It simply came to our notice then.

While working on the set, he realized how lucky he was. It was clear how colleagues struggled to balance family life. “Big bad cameramen show all the wrong things about the idea of ​​being able to use their kids,” he said.

Many young women in the profession do not see how they can combine their jobs with their motherhood, Riley said: “If you take a break you will lose your connection. If you are not ready to do this job for this amount of money then save – Because someone will. ”

Then Diseased blind The star did something about it. Last November, when The Wonder Works opened its doors, Riley set up a nursery with his business partner, Radcliffe, whose wife also works in the industry. Warner Bros. Studios provided space in Livesden – where the Harry Potter series was filmed – and many of the toys and furniture were donated by Warner Bros. (Its Hollywood studio already has an on-site child care facility).

Tomorrow, Riley and Radcliffe will launch a social media campaign, Putting the family in the film, Supported by an open letter, urging studios and production companies to take care of the children of television and film workers to prevent parents from leaving the industry. The ambition is to include child care in the budget by 2024 for each product.

Naya pays to accompany Kate Middleton to a relay service in ‘King Charles’, pays to go with her ‘keep her foot in the door’ a BBC / Drama Republic / Robert Viglas

The pair are also launching a mobile nursery on a double-decker bus to hire film companies for remote shoots. It will tour the set of the first film in May.

For filming in the nursery studio, the producers write down the expenses for buying the spaces facing the nursery, and the parents return them. There is also a holiday club for school-age children.

Prior to the epidemic, women were under-represented in senior film jobs Report A year ago, 31 percent of the women who worked in behind-the-scenes positions were women.

Natasha Moore, head of promotions at Directors UK – who found that UK films are six times more likely to be directed by a man – said: “Like many other under-represented directors, many women face many challenges in pursuing a successful career. Unexpected time, including care responsibilities and pay-inequality.

Hope Dixon Leach, an Edinburgh-based film director and co-founder of Rising Films, which advocates for parents and carers in the UK film and TV industry, says such work patterns mean “it’s not very suitable for childcare. Not childcare.” Is set up to five [workers]” The image of art clashes with reality for most who work in it. “People who do very well are visible and make a lot of money,” he says. However, “most do not have stable jobs – many have risky jobs. Covid has made it increasingly clear how uncertain our industry is. ”

There are also problems with hiring practices, he says: Women are asked if they are pregnant and how to care for their children. “It always happens. I don’t think anyone can talk about it because they are freelancers.”

Charlotte Riley and Mark Radcliffe founded The Wonder Works to help co-workers struggle to balance family life.

Charlotte Riley and Mark Radcliffe founded The Wonder Works to help co-workers struggle to balance family life.

During the nursery installation, Riley faced a lot of pushbacks from Philly executives. “We knocked on the door for two years, and people heard, ‘Why would anyone pay for anything? [not] I had to pay for it [in] 100 years? ‘”

Meeting Emily Stillman, Warner Bros.’s senior vice president of operations, changed their fortunes. “He was, ‘We need it, we want it, how can I help raise it?’ “This encounter came at a time when his company was looking for ways to diversify its workforce,” Riley said. . “

Riley, who has two children with her husband, actor Tom Hardy, said: “When you were a parent, it was the most traumatic experience ever. So, who am I? How do I work now? And how do I do that? If you don’t support people at the most difficult times in people’s lives, we will never do stories written by women, written by women, directed by women, told by women. “

After the nursery’s official opening in November, Riley said the productions offered parents support childcare at the recruitment stage. Nursery spaces are flexible, with offers of emergency child care back-up or for a short period of time when parents receive a freelance jig. A Survey By raising the film, 68 percent of respondents find access to cost and flexible child care find

June O’Sullivan is the chief executive of the London Early Years Foundation, which operates 39 nurseries, including one in the House of Commons (open twice a week until 10:30 pm for late sitting sessions). Speaking about setting up workplace nurseries, he said organizers need the support of managers. “In most cases, decisions about nursery development are made by men. There were many objections [the House of Commons one]”

“It’s a difficult issue because women are concerned about raising it. Small organizations can’t afford it. Child care is not something that should be kept separate, we should take care of them. It’s not just about enabling women to work,” she said. , Because we value children.

Riley hopes his initiative will be the start of a larger conversation in the film and television industry. “So people think they can go to their producer and say,‘ Are you giving child care? Are you giving flexible work time, are you sharing work? ‘I want it to be the first step in making the industry more family-friendly. Because real life is messy and chaotic.

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