Over the last few years we have been gradually researching this new feature documentary project. We have filmed at different cat shows and worked with many interesting pedigree cat breeders, as well as Dr Leslie Lyons (School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California) who is the internationally-respected authority on feline genetics. We are now looking for funding to support the production stage of this exciting project.
"Everything you need to know about genetics you can learn
from your cat"
(Associate professor Leslie Lyons PhD of the UC Davis Genetics Laboratory at the University of California)
Cats are now the UK's most popular pet and in addition to the thousands of moggies we own are the increasingly diverse pedigree breeds. This film will follow breeders into their homes and the show-ring exploring their complex, creative and often scientific world. We will show genetics at work in the home and the laboratory and question whether 'community' science can have a meaningful connection to 'professional' science.
The film will follow several characters who are key to the development of specific breeds in the UK. We will also work with US geneticist Dr Leslie Lyons who ratified the world's first cloned kitten ("Cc") and the first GFP ("glow-in-the-dark") transgenic kitten. A charismatic advocate for genetic research she maintains close contact with breeders worldwide to fuel her research through their observations and experimentation.
As artists/directors we have a track record of working with hobby or 'pro-am' groups and we're particularly interested in ways that knowledge can be generated by actual 'making and doing' combined with close observation. Pedigree cat breeders show a fascinating mix of scientific knowledge and creativity, their acute sense of the correct look for the cats, underpinned by the genetic knowledge required to breed for 'refining a look'.
We'd very much like to thank all the breeders and show organisers we have worked with to date, especially Anthony Nichols of the UK LaPerm cat club.