jolly griffin

Source: Screen International/Peter Searle / Rich McIver

Anna Griffin, Jolyon Rubinstein

Producer Anna Griffin, a 2018 Screen Star of Tomorrow, has founded UK production company Jolly Griffin alongside actor-filmmaker Jolyon Rubinstein.

The company is based in the East Midlands, and will produce projects created by Rubinstein, while also working with regional talent.

Named after its founders, Jolly Griffin aims to work 50/50 across film and TV; the company is looking to collaborate with established TV partners while in its early stages. 

The company’s initial film projects include an ‘eco-anxiety inspired’ comedy-drama, currently in development with ecological-focused streaming platform WaterBear, set within the Scottish Isles. The as-yet-untitled film is written by Rubinstein and Alistair Griggs, who previously wrote satirical BBC Three series The Revolution Will Be Televised, which Rubinstein co-created with Heydon Prowse and Joe Wade.

Conceived during the lockdown in 2021, Jolly Griffin has received support from the BBC’s Small Indie Fund, which ring-fences £1m a year for independent production companies with turnovers of less than £10m.

It has two series projects in development with BBC Drama, both created by Rubinstein with one co-created and co-written by filmmaker, activist and author Hassan Akkad.

Griffin, who produced 2018 Bafta Scotland-winning and Bifa-nominated thriller Calibre, will continue to run her own sister outfit Griffin Pictures. Hester Bloom, development executive at Griffin Pictures, will work across the slate of both companies.

“At Jolly Griffin we approach our stories through the lens of satire and truth which, by default, blends the boundaries between drama and comedy,” said Griffin and Rubinstein. “There is so much tragic comedy to be found in everyday life and in our political and cultural climate, but the drama and the intensity of our characters’ lived experiences elevates our narratives beyond laughs. We are here to make projects of impact, and if we make our audiences smile while they think, then we’ve done our job.”