Toucan’s First Start-up: The Chase Films

by Ines Marques De Sa

Long, long ago, before Toucan was known for its royal blue colour and focused on start- ups in the F&B, retail, and lifestyle sectors, Toucan supported a small film start-up called The Chase Films, founded by Mark Gill and Alex Roberts. They have seen tremendous success since moving on from Toucan, even being nominated for an Oscar and BAFTA award, and more recently winning a Silver Award at the London Brand Film Festival run by Campaign for their video “From Sheep to Shop”. We asked Mark Gill a few questions on the success of The Chase Films and his experience with Toucan.


Tell us a bit about the work that The Chase Films does.

The Chase Films are first and foremost film makers, recognised at the highest level by the Oscars and Baftas. We use our film making experience to bring brands and companies to life. We work with our clients to ensure the story or message they want to tell is both compelling and authentic.


What have been some of your most successful projects?

We are very proud of our Oscar nomination for our short film The Voorman Problem. This recognition has helped us both with our creative work and reassuring our commercial clients that they are in the best hands when it comes to getting their own message out there.


As an entrepreneur, what were the biggest obstacles you faced when growing your business?

The biggest challenge is how to differentiate in a hugely competitive market. There are many companies and agencies out there, all offering to tell your ’story’, without necessarily having any narrative storytelling experience. Where we differ is that we operate and have been successful in both the commercial and cinematic sectors (Our debut feature ENGLAND IS MINE is released in cinemas in the UK and USA in September 2017) and it’s all delivered with a simple elegance.


How has your experience with Toucan benefitted your company?

Working with Toucan has been a great experience. The support we have had has enabled us to connect with investors, agencies and other entrepreneurs. Because of Toucan’s recommendation it makes the process a lot easier and certainly gives you some serious validation.


You have recently won a Silver Award at the London Brand Film Festival, run by Campaign. What does it mean to you to win an award like this?

I think its great to have your worked recognised, especially by your peers. It also really helps to show potential clients that you’re producing work of a high calibre. I also think its great that Campaign are running this competition as it gives us a chance to get your work seen.


You co-wrote and directed ‘England is Mine’, based on Morrissey, lead singer of The Smiths. What was the inspiration behind this film?

My love of The Smiths is well documented and I grew up on the same streets as Morrissey. I was always fascinated by that voice coming out of the speakers that seemed to talk directly to me about my life. That he touched millions of other people as well is Morrissey’s genius.


What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

 Always remember that the party is on set.


What is the best piece of advice you have ever given?

Go and talk to Toucan!!



You can watch From Sheep to Shop here: