Here.Us.Now. is the fruit of a year-long investigation to hear the voices of people living on three London housing estates. Directed by Dorothy Allen-Pickard and made with Cardboard Citizens, the film series looks at the role social housing now plays in modern-day London. Actors with experience of homelessness listen to the real voices of social housing residents, and speak their words out loud — on occasion watched over by the residents themselves. The films are often funny, sometimes uncanny, and reveal the joys, the challenges, and the importance of social housing to a thriving capital city.
Pickard “When listening to the hundreds of interviews Cardboard Citizens members had carried out on the three estates, what struck me was how each estate has its own particular character. This in part came from surrounding myths and geography, but a huge factor seemed to be which stage they were at in the unstoppable process of gentrification. The social housing estate where we filmed in Hackney was by far the most divided, which is not unrelated to the fact that this estate is the furthest down the line of "regeneration". Much of it has been knocked down, rebuilt and sold off as privately-owned flats, so there was talk of "us and them" and a latent tension in the air that isn't helped by the intense policing in the area. More than anything though, I learnt that there's an infinite number of stories held in these estates that are continuously surprising, and demonstrate that extraordinary insight and articulacy are to be found in the most ordinary of places.”
See the full series on YouTube
2 Cam @jhaldon
1 AC @jeromejamesking
Prod @ems2dunstan @joshlikesfilm