My Projects JAYDEN MCGINLAY
Wait For Me centres around two young people who forge a deep connection and take us on a journey which explores the complexities of substance use disorder and the devastating impact it has on relationships.
An aspiring musician who has created a glass castle around himself due to the sudden loss of his parents. He faces the complex struggle of addiction and finds hope through his connection with Lauren.
Optimistic and grounded, Lauren is an art student with a strong sense of self whose warmth and compassion shine brightly through her unwavering support for Cole.
There's often trepidation around talking about addiction and yet so many people are affected by it in one way or another, whether they know someone who is going through it or they’re going through it themselves. Globally, fewer than 20 per cent of people with substance use disorders are in treatment and one of the barriers is social stigma which can reduce the willingness of individuals to seek treatment. My aim in telling this story is to raise awareness and shine a light on the struggle with compassion and humanity so we can move towards ending the stigma and discrimination that make it less likely that those suffering with addiction will seek or get the help they need.
Wait For Me explores themes of love, acceptance, and the importance of connection. The support of others has had a huge impact on my own life and the powerful human need for connection is something we can all resonate with. It’s through the relationship between Cole and Lauren that we are shown how much love and acceptance can mean for someone in need. Love alone is not enough to get us through our struggles, but faith in love is a source of hope that gives meaning to life. It is Cole’s faith in love that gives him the hope to battle through his addiction.
There have been many depictions of people suffering from addiction that perhaps are cliche, and then there are films like Heaven Knows What or Candy that really capture that raw state of using and don’t shy away from the harsh reality of the subject matter. My story is told through a series of juxtaposing moments in time that emphasise the protagonist’s struggles, highlight the devastating effects of addiction, and represent the confusion and chaos within him.
We’ll be filming across Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and hand-held photography will feature heavily in order to imbue the shots with intimacy and enhance the naturalistic feel of the film, as well to reflect the characters’ emotional states.
My original music will support the mood of every scene; from light piano pieces to dark, dramatic works, the score will play a major part in telling this story.
- Jayden McGinlay
Jayden grew up on stage and screen, making his professional theatre debut at age eight playing Jeremy Potts in the Australian National Tour of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, before joining the cast of Opera Australia and John Frost's The King and I and the London Palladium production of The Sound of Music. He began screen acting at nine years old, appearing in TV commercials, feature films and TV shows, including ABC’s Harrow.
In 2020, Jayden was cast as Cecil in the reimagining of Stephen King’s Children of the Corn, written and produced by Kurt Wimmer (Salt) and produced by Lucas Foster (Ford v Ferrari), Doug Barry (FML) and John Baldecchi (Happy Death Day), now available on DVD and streaming services worldwide. Jayden can also be seen on Disney+ as Teddy in The Curious Case of Dolphin Bay, directed by Christine Luby and produced by The Steve Jaggi Company and as Max in the Netflix Original horror, Sweet River, directed by Justin McMillan and produced by Ashley McLeod.
Merging the skills honed through his many years of training and industry experience with his passion for creating, Jayden brings his versatility as a performer to his own films, which he writes, directs and produces. With a knack for captivating audiences through his heartfelt storytelling, the first film he made at 12 years old was selected as a finalist in film festivals in Australia and overseas including Tropfest's Trop Jr. where it was screened at Event Cinemas in Sydney, and Hollyshorts Film Festival in Los Angeles with screenings at TCL Chinese Theatres in Hollywood.
Jayden also utilises over 13 years of vocal and piano training, creating his own music and scores for his films.
New Dream Productions
David Cook, a First Nations writer, director, producer, and actor from Meanjin/Brisbane, is more than just an emerging creative force in the industry—he's a storyteller with a heart deeply connected to his roots.
Passionate about empowering First Nations voices and stories, Cook's journey in the last 5 years has been nothing short of remarkable. From wearing multiple hats in projects like Darby and Joan, ABC’s 'Troppo', 'Joe VS Carol', 'Harrow', 'Strangeville', and 'Nexus', he has emerged as a versatile force. However, it's his debut feature film, 'Heart of the Man,' where he truly shines. Having not just written, but also produced and directed it, the film recently completed post-production at The Post Lounge, set for an early 2024 release with an ANZ Distributor already on board.
As the founder of New Dream Productions, Cook is on a mission to expand his creative horizons and enrich the broader screen industry. His latest venture, the short documentary 'Skate or Cry', directed by him and produced with the support of Screen Queensland, is making waves in the festival circuit, earning well-deserved accolades.
But for Cook, storytelling is not confined to a single medium. With a feature documentary, TV series, and another feature film in early development, he embraces the diversity of challenges that storytelling presents. Navigating the dynamic entertainment landscape, he remains committed to crafting narratives that not only captivate but also resonate with audiences, leaving an indelible mark on the world of storytelling.