Pushing for Positive Change
The Marriage Equality short film Australia needs!
Samantha Heather Photography
Bianca & Madeleine
Marriage Equality still hasn't passed in Australia, it seems so strange that of all things they follow and support other countries on... equal rights is not one of them. This short film endeavors to create the positive change that has been a long time coming.
Curve recently caught up with a few very important people from the latest short film by Laura Nagy, 'We Will'. Let's work together to make this beautiful film go viral - world wide - and create and even bigger back bone for the Australian public pushing for Marriage Equality.
'We Will' is a short film written by Laura Nagy, Nirrimi Firebrace, and Samuel Leighton-Dore, and directed by Laura Nagy. It follows the journey of the relationship of a lesbian couple, from their first date, all the way to the day of their wedding. The film aims to highlight the normality of same-sex relationships - Claire (Bianca Bradey) and Rachel (Madeleine Withington) are just like any other couple. Their love is the same as anyone else's, and they deserve their special day to proclaim their love. Not only amongst their friends and family, but equally under the eyes of the law.
(Bianca, Laura, Madeleine)
What is your goal for this film?
Laura: We Will is a celebration of love, but it is also a call to arms. It is a declaration that, no matter what the challenges, we will continue fighting for marriage equality. It feels especially poignant after the disappointing result of the Coalition’s vote earlier this week. It’s a reminder that we may have lost this battle, but we will not lose the war. In the end, love will win.
Bianca: I’m hoping that we will raise awareness for Marriage Equality. It actually shocks and appalls me that we are still not allowed to have same-sex marriage here in Australia. It just seems so ridiculous and archaic. The goal is to change this. Something needs to be done. Now.
Where will people be able to view this short film?
Laura: The film will be available on our YouTube Channel within the next couple of weeks. It has been created for an online life, and can be shared through social media and various other platforms. We’re hoping this message of love and positivity and determination is something people will be excited to share far and wide.
Bianca, you have starred in a lesbian series before, is this something you are passionate about?
Bianca: I’m definitely passionate about equal human rights. I do seem to be cast in these types of roles quite a lot. I hope that my online profile with the Aussie lesbian web-series 'Starting From Now', and my other upcoming short film 'A Private Matter' will help spread the word for this great cause. I love being involved in the LGBT community, and love to help out in any way I can.
Madeleine, how did you feel about this experience?
Madeleine: I'm really passionate about this. I feel really lucky to have been included in this project, a chance to do what I love, and speak out about social injustice. Marriage equality is by no means the final frontier in the fight for LGBTQIA+ rights, but it's a step in the right direction, and a step Australia has to take now. It makes me furious when people start talking about the definition of "marriage". How dare you? No really, how DARE YOU?! This is absolutely not about the definition of a word, it's about human rights. I hope this film helps advance the fight for those rights.
You both look so natural and comfortable with each other, there is definitely some chemistry... am I right?
Madeleine: Ha ha! It's funny actually, just before I found out I'd be doing this film, I sat down and watched “Wyrmwood” (a great Aussie movie, see it if you haven't already), and developed a total crush on Bianca. Then Laura got it touch with me, and said "Hey, do you want to do a film to promote marriage equality? By the way, Bianca Bradey's playing your wife."
Bianca: Love love looooved working with Maddy. How could you not? I think in acting it’s just about being open and trusting. It’s about creating a safe environment to play and be free. With no barriers and judgments. So maybe that is the chemistry that you saw…
Laura: The first thing we shot was a kissing scene in bed and they were perfect together from the very first ‘action’. We shot all of the relationship stuff first – scenes and scenes and scenes from first dates to fights, running all over Sydney like mad women – so by the time we got to the wedding scene Bianca and Madeleine were like glue, even though they’d only known each other for less than a week.
Laura can you tell us a little bit more about your ideas and inspiration behind the film?
Laura: I was just feeling so frustrated by our government’s current stance on marriage equality. It makes me feel like I’m banging my head against a big homophobic brick wall all day… I was desperate to go out and help the cause; and filmmaking is my skill. I really believe we can grow and evolve so much through our storytelling. I wanted to show the beautiful normality of a same-sex relationship; to illustrate that they are just the same as any other relationship.
(Bianca & Madeleine)
This film had a unique writing process; can you tell me a little more about that?
Laura: We had three writers on this film – myself, Nirrimi Firebrace, and Samuel Leighton-Dore. In our story, the girls write their wedding vows in secret and don’t reveal them to each other until they’re standing face-to-face at their wedding ceremony. I thought it would be interesting to have the character’s vows written by two different wordsmiths, so each character had a really distinctive voice.
My mind immediately went to Nirrimi and Samuel – their audiences adore them for their abilities to articulate the whispers in their hearts. Samuel and Nirrimi wrote the vows in a blind collaboration - without ever sharing their words with each other - and then I stitched it all together.
It was a really interesting experiment with a beautiful result, which I think proves just how much love transcends sex or gender. Samuel is a homosexual man, Nirrimi is a heterosexual woman, they are writing vows for lesbian characters, but none of that matters. The vows could have been written by anyone – love is the same no matter who you are, no matter who your partner is.
Laura, why is this film personal to you?
Laura: Love is personal. It’s not up to anyone else to define your love. It’s not up to anyone else to say your love is more or less valid. So of course I take it personally, I’m a human being like any other and my heart will love whomever it loves, I have no control over it, just like anybody else. It’s as personal to me as it should be to anyone. It just comes down to basic empathy.
Can you tell us about the music that will accompany the film?
Laura: Bec Sandridge is an incredible Australian singer-songwriter whose music has always really stirred something in me. Marriage equality is an issue close to Bec’s heart and I was so delighted that she would want to be involved. We were lucky enough to film her performing her song ‘Stones’ live in our wedding reception scene.
Do you think sexuality is something you can control?
Madeleine: No. No. No. No. I really don't. I don't understand why some people think that. I try really hard to live with empathy and understanding, but that one's beyond me. It takes about two seconds of not very hard thinking to figure that out. Love is love.
Bianca: No. I think sexuality doesn’t need to be defined. Why do we have to have labels? Gay, Straight, Lesbian, Bi… they are all just words put on us to pigeonhole us into a category so society isn’t confused. I believe we just fall in love with souls. And if we are open and honest we could fall in love with whomever our heart connects with. Whatever sex they are.
Laura: Absolutely not. That’s nonsense. You should never try to control your sexuality. It will not lead to anything but heartache. You will never be happy until you are true to yourself.
(Bianca & Madeleine)
Why do you think Australia is so behind the times with Marriage Equality?
Madeleine: At the moment, Australia is being run by unchecked privilege. Privilege, when you break the word down, means "private law". I think that says a lot. One law for us, one law for you, because we can. It's sad and terrifying. Australia has a huge problem with equality, and not just with regards to the LGBTQIA+ community. I think it's a cultural thing, it runs deep, and it's time for change
Laura: Yes, exactly. Our government is on the wrong side of history. Future generations will look back at this time - when same-sex marriage was illegal - with the same shame as we look back to the illegality of inter-racial marriage. The great thing is that there is now overwhelming support for marriage equality in the Australian community. Statistics show that the majority of Australians are now pro-marriage equality. Support will only grow and as it does our parliamentarians will be forced to adapt… especially as the election looms.
This looks like a really fun, happy film, how did you feel making it?
Bianca: I loved making this film. It was beautiful and free and playful. And such a joy to work with such amazing and talented filmmakers. I can’t wait for people to see it. I’m so very proud to have been a part of it.
Madeleine: I had the best time! Laura and Bianca were just terrific to work with, as well as our cinematographer Emma (Paine), and our photographer Samantha (Heather). It was very special to work with so many talented, driven women, who are so passionate about equality. I feel pretty lucky to have been a part of this. The film is really uplifting, which is great. It has a real sense of inevitability about it, a kind of "This is happening. It's not optional. You can try and fight it, but love will win. Deal with it."
Laura: We had a ball making this film! And those feelings really translate to what you’ll see on screen. At the end of the day, what we’re fighting for is love. Love and weddings! The most joyous celebrations imaginable! So the film really had to be a heart-warming affair.
Were there any awkward moments?
Bianca: No it was all sunshine and rainbows and unicorns if I’m honest!!!
Madeleine: Nope! Which is a bit surprising for me, I get quite nervous meeting new people, and tend to pick the most inappropriate things to talk about. I'm usually more normal on the second day. But both Bianca and I remarked upon how easy it was, and how comfortable we felt with each other. It just felt really natural.
Laura: There was one moment when Madeleine got a bit excited kissing Bianca, tried to pick her up I think, but ended up banging her head into a cement wall, pretty hard I must say… but they just used the moment and turned the scene into something even sweeter and funnier. It was a joy to watch unfold.
Watch the teaser trailer here:
Be sure to check out the stunning film stills below!