Mother has launched an entertainment division, Mother Pictures, led by Mother co-founder, Mark Waites.
Can an ad agency make entertainment? Ad agencies understand what makes people tick, how to connect with them, and to make them feel something with a story. They make great branded stories or they die. Mother has been making great branded stories for the past twenty-four years. The agency feels that a next step is to make unbranded content created purely to entertain.
Mark Waites’ aim is simple – to shape great ideas into even better concepts for programming; ideas that result in shared cultural moments for the UK and beyond – with a centre of gravity in scripted stories that people want to get involved with and aren’t afraid to voice their opinions on.
Waites has started to build his team, hiring Andrew Gow as producer to help shape what a content development studio of the future will look like. Gow was formerly head of development at Raindog Films, Colin Firth’s production company (Eye In The Sky, Loving, Official Secrets, The Wife), and previously at Heyday Films (Testament Of Youth, Paddington, The Thirteenth Tale, Worricker Trilogy).
Waites commented, “We’ve seen many fantastic storytelling talents emerge from the ad world over the years, some of them having started at our company, so for a long time we have felt this itch to participate more meaningfully in the storytelling space. Covid or not, this is a very exciting time for British TV and film; the rise of streaming services and a desire for greater diversity and inclusion mean stories are being told now that would never have made it over the line in years past. So the time has come for us to build our own slate of projects, gathering distinctive, authored IP, and courting this generation’s most promising talent, across TV and film.”
Mother Pictures’ first work is a drama series called The Leak.
Its synopsis is: “As lockdown drags on, Sarah realises that her previously watertight friendship “boat” might have sprung a leak. Someone’s been informing her ex-boyfriend about what she’s been up to in her newly single, socially-isolated life. Amidst a painful breakup and a global pandemic, Sarah is determined to find the culprit using everything she has at her disposal… wine and video conferencing.”
Matt Hartley, writer of The Leak, commented, “While there may be some debate over whether Wagatha Christie was 2019’s biggest news story, there is no doubt that Covid has been 2020’s. The Leak’s starting point came from mashing these two stories together to explore friendship, family and the pressures that we have all been living through this year, whilst embracing a new form of telling dramas.”
Lisa Spirling, director of The Leak, added,“We’ve all been through the mill recently, this drama explores what that means for a socially distanced, yet still interconnected web of people – it’s experimenting with the tools we have at our disposal to help tell a relatable, human story.”
The Leak Credits:
Producers: Mark Waites, Andrew Gow & Sam Brain
Director: Lisa Spirling (Theatre 503)
Writer: Matt Hartley (Eyam, Deposit, Eastenders)
Editor: Suga Suppiah
Visual Consultant : Matt Vahey
Sound Design & Mix : Ines Adriana
Sarah: Natale Dew (Sandylands, The Great, Bodyguard)
Chris: Simon Harrison (Endeavour, Humans, Everest)
Belinda: Annette Badland (Dr Who, Outlander, Eastenders)
Jacob: Esh Alladi (Ordinary Love, A Confession, Eastenders)
Mary: Hannah James Scott (Finding Joy, Crumble, Empty)
The Leak is available exclusively via IGTV, with a five-day takeover of @motherlondon, marking the first content series from Mother Pictures.