Ciara Barry and Rosie Crerar were both “upstart” assistants and development support executives when they vowed to one day work together, agreeing there was room in cinemas for fresh, contemporary stories from Scotland. That was 15 years ago.

“We were frustrated with the version of Scotland on screen at the time, which didn’t represent the internationalism that we know and have benefited from by being based here,” says Edinburgh-born Crerar, who worked as a development and production executive at Creative Scotland from 2014 to 2016. Her experience also includes time as a programme manager at the BFI London Film Festival and as co-director of Glasgow Short Film Festival.

Belfast-born Barry worked as a commercials producer at Mallinson Television Productions from 2013 to 2016. She has also worked as a project manager at Engage, the film-school exchange programme run by Screen Academy Scotland, and as a development and production executive at new talent development initiative DigiCult.

The pair set up Glasgow-based production banner barry crerar in 2016 with the help of a BFI Vision award, which they say was crucial to the company’s inception. “Our idea was always that filmmakers get two‑for‑one producers on our projects,” says Barry.

“It’s been very intensive,” adds Crerar. “The conflation of having young children with the demands of being a producer, alongside [what] everybody is facing with the pandemic, has created challenges.”

Their ambition to portray Scotland’s internationalism on screen can be seen across the slate. Projects in development include comedy drama The Parrot, which Belgian filmmaker Matthieu de Braconier is co-producing and has co-written with Rupert Jones (Kaleidoscope), who will direct. Also in development is feature documentary Kenmure Street, from Scotland-based Chilean-Belgian filmmaker Felipe Bustos Sierra, about two Sikh men of Indian origin in Glasgow who were taken from their home and detained by the Home Office for alleged immigration violations.

Completed projects include Nobody Has To Know, starring and co-directed by Belgian filmmaker Bouli Lanners; animated feature-length documentary Irene’s Ghost, directed by Iain Cunningham; and Scott Graham’s feature Run, co-produced with Margaret Matheson, which won a Bafta Scotland best actress award in 2021 for Marli Siu’s performance.

Meanwhile, the coming-of-age drama Girl, written and directed by Adura Onashile, who boasts Nigerian heritage and has lived in Glasgow for 12 years, is currently in post-­production. The film marks Onashile’s feature debut following 2021 Bafta Scotland-nominated short Expensive Shit.

“We’re expanding and also slowly beginning to develop TV projects,” Crerar says.

Contact: Ciara Barry, Rosie Crerar