Sunday Shorts: Flicking the Bean

Gretel Sharp in Flicking the Bean.

Directed by Jemma Cotter
Produced by Brett Tinning (Quiet Giant)
Written by Gretel Sharp and Jemma Cotter
Starring Gretel Sharp, Caitlin Duff, and Pearce Hessling

Prim little Beth has yet to discover the magic of ‘flicking the bean’ to the horror of her best friend Jo, so she embarks on a surreal journey of self-discovery and, most importantly, self-love. 

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Article by Jemma Cotter

Flicking the Bean is the brainchild of Gretel Sharp, the co-writer and lead actor, who wrote a short skit based on a funny interaction she had with friends. 

She approached me about turning the skit into a short film and we workshopped the idea together over several script drafts. 

I injected my particular brand of surrealist comedy and she brought all the character-driven motivations – it was a great combination. 

During this time she eventually asked if I would like to direct, and I thought why not?! 

She approached Matt Wilson and Brett Tinning from the production company Quiet Giant to produce the film, which really got the ball rolling. 

We started filming in July of 2016 on wineries around the Geelong region, including Leura Park Estate, Jack Rabbit Vineyard, and also a golf course location. 

It was fantastic fun – especially taking our giant bean mascot out for a ride in a golf buggy, weaving between confused golfers and giggling kids. 

At one point we filled an entire bathtub with about 50 litres of raspberry jelly! Turns out freezing cold jelly + actor in a swimsuit + winter weather = not fun. Gretel was a champ though and we filmed the scene as quickly as possible. 

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We wound up with some beautiful, candy-coloured imagery thanks to our incredibly hard-working crew. 

Post-production took place over six months and our composer Sheridan Black created a hilarious, bean-themed soundtrack that perfectly suit our silly film. 

We premiered in March of 2017 and some sneaky paparazzi snapped some pictures of our stars arriving at the event. 

Overall, we received very positive feedback from audiences at the premiere and subsequent film festival screenings. 

We were selected for the Australia’s Funniest Shorts line-up and had a massive screenings tour at festivals like CinefestOZ, Sydney Fringe, and Melbourne International Comedy Festival. We also attended For Film’s Sake Festival in Sydney and Setting Sun Film Festival here in Melbourne. 

After a year traveling around Australia, we are proud to finally release this short comedy online for all to see. 

We hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoyed making it. Oh – and share it with any bean-flickers you may know out there! 

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